Derbyshire, England

Andy and I had planned a day in York to places he had mentioned in our first conversation together: places to see viking history, castles, and cathedrals, along with stops in tea rooms.  In the end though, I had stayed up all night after feeling ill so we slept in and missed our train.  I felt guilty about this but it turned out nice to have a carefree and slower-paced day, which began with a gorgeous drive to a restaurant in the Peak District, an area known for its breathtaking landscape.
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There, I stuffed myself on some of the quintessential English food that I had craved to try: roast dinner with Yorkshire pudding.
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Following lunch (or ‘dinner,’ as he calls it), we drove by rolling moor after rolling moor . . .
img_0298I felt as if life here was in a beautiful painting and I told Andy this often, though I don’t know how seriously he took me.  However, if I went back to England what I would want to do most would simply be a passenger in his car and slip down the moors, stop to take pictures and walk around, see as much of the land as possible.
img_0295img_0297As we swept by, so did the brown, which Andy told me it was heather.  I had found the pink and purple plant outside of a London apartment earlier and found myself envisioning what the splash of color would look like when it was in bloom.
IMG_0194.JPGimg_0193Imagining the already stunning landscape covered in blushing pinks and purples — My heart felt ready to burst from happiness as we continued to weave down the roads.
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Soon, our drive took us to well-known Chatsworth, a stately home passed down through many generations.  Chatsworth has become a top destination in England so cars could be seen lining the front of it as people toured the grounds and house practically every day.
img_0324In fact, Chatsworth was made more popular too due to its many shots found in Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice film.

The drive alone into Chatsworth was worth it for me — There were deer covering the land . . .img_0314img_0315along with gorgeous pheasant, which I had never seen in person . . . img_0317img_0322and to make it event more exciting, there was a Christmas market on Chatsworth’s grounds, which we explored before touring the house.
img_0325The home was gorgeous but there was limited access to most of it, which is understandable as the family still lives there.  I wish though I could have seen those rooms used daily — the kitchen, dining room, others — to get a sneak peek at what life is like for them.  Still, the marble statues, impressive paintings, and rooms in general were remarkable.  We didn’t have a chance to tour the back gardens because it got dark due to the sun setting early during the winter season.  Even without it though, walking hand-in-hand with Andy through the Christmas market and Chatsworth home — It felt romantic and like a different type of get-away.
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That night, we ventured out with a couple Andy is close to, one I’ve become friends with online.  While I was excited to explore England, I confess I was also eager to put faces with the names of his friends so meeting this couple was at the top of my list.  Also a note for elation: Some English pubs allow allow dogs!  Yep, mainly when the pub owner has a dog and their dog is inside!  I was about to pack my bags and move my sweet fur-monster and me to England in that moment.  No bants.

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