England Vacation 2009 -- August 20

For the last few days the forecast has been for heavy rain today however this morning it was for light rain between 10 and 1 so we went hiking. Helen Anne took just the little camera in its waterproof container. All the walks were circular walks from Godshill (SZ528816). We did the alternative easier walk – Godshill, the Worsley Obelisk and the Donkey Sanctuary. It was 9.7km (6mi) and 210m (675ft) of ascent.

It was raining as the bus drove into Godshill so everyone was busy pulling on wet gear (jackets mostly). Before we were 10 minutes up the road, we stopped to put the jackets away. It did rain again for a minute or two after lunch but not enough to bother with jackets again although the pack covers did stay on. From Godshill, we headed out via the Sunshine path to a Donkey Sanctuary where we had our morning break. The donkey sanctuary takes in donkey’s that are in need of care. They really didn't want anyone to feed the donkeys -- we counted at least six “Don’t feed the donkey” signs in a very small area.

From there we headed to Wroxall along an old railway bed -- nice level walking. We stopped there at the Worsley pub for lunch. Their kitchens are still under renovation so they didn't mind us eating our lunches at their picnic tables. Helen Anne was going to have tea with her lunch but their coffee machine was broken so no hot drinks. She got an Orange and Mango J2O fruit drink instead. Karen had diet coke. We then all took advantage of the facilities.

After lunch we headed to Appuldurcombe House. Most of the house was destroyed during the war. At one point it had 52 rooms, 365 windows and 7 stairways. (HA: I think that’s right but I thought there was a 12 as well) We went out through Freemantle Gate and headed up and up and up to the Worsley Obelisek (the ugliest monument going -- looked like stacks of cement bricks). It was really windy up there -- tried to blow us off our feet -- we expected one of us to do a Mary Poppins imitation.

From there we climbed down 205 steep steps to Godshill. A short visit to All Saints Church then a cup of tea before getting the bus back to the house. In All Saints church, there is a painting of a Lily Cross (the crucifix is made of lilies). The church is on top of a hill and difficult to get up to. Legend has it that the original building site was lower down and much more accessible. But three mornings in a row the workers found the building had been moved to the top of the hill. So they gave up and decided that the top of the hill must be where God wanted the church (therefore Godshill). One of the monuments in the church is has two beaders praying on the bottom of the man’s feet.

After dinner, Karen went disappeared for a while. When she reappeared it turned out she’d been down to the bay with her camera and gorilla pod to play with taking photos of water at sunset. She had a lot of fun.



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