I write today to share with you my magical adventure to…. Chester. Having never been to this historical city before I was excited, but dubious that it could ever be as beautiful & historic as York, where I currently reside. I still think York wins, but Chester came pretty close.
The train journey there was filled with woollen delight, as you would expect. I made good progress on the Hitch-hiker shawlette currently on the needles (my first ever knitted garment!) and I even managed to start a crocheted C2C blanket for myself. I had bought some James C Brett Woodlander yarn from The York Makery on the way to the train station as I just couldn’t resist another ball of yarn for the collection! Even though I had trawled the internet for hours trying to find a yarn shop in Chester it appeared that there were none that currently trading in the city centre. As a yarn addict, this did disappoint me greatly – I was so excited to buy yarn and justify it by playing the ‘souvenir yarn’ card! However, this small disappointment couldn’t tarnish what an amazing weekend I had.
Saturday was Chester Zoo and by gum did it deliver! We arrived for opening, they had to practically push us out the gates at closing, and although I took my knitting with me, I didn’t have a spare moment to even think about taking it out. As we arrived I was as excited as a crafter in a wool shop, darting all over the place trying to decide what to look at first and it didn’t let up for most of the day. Each new animal brought on another wave of excitement and I would turn into a child all over again. We were so lucky with the animals, as you can see from the pictures – practically all of them came out to see us, with some of them coming right up to the bars/glass. I felt like a Disney princess!
The work that Chester Zoo does is phenomenal and as a charity, all the money we spent there that day went to the upkeep of the animals and the conservation of endangered species all over the world. If you haven’t done so already I would highly recommend a trip there, and we will definitely be going again. Channel 4 recently did a series called ‘The Secret Life of the Zoo’ which I would also recommend, all about the work they do at Chester. Series 2 was being filmed whilst we were there, so who knows – maybe I’ll be on it!
That evening we ate at a BBQ joint called Hickory’s Smoke-house. We had booked in advance but they couldn’t fit us in until 9 – 1st clue about how good it was! Upon arrival we received a complimentary bag of popcorn (2nd clue) and were shown to our tables. Now most places will give you one napkin with your knife and fork, here, you get a whole kitchen role! This was the 3rd clue about how good it was. If I am going to get so mucky that I need an entire role of kitchen roll, I’m in the right place! My partner and I both ordered ribs, me the half rack, and him the full. We were expecting the ribs to be the same size as any other place but what arrived at our table was something else!
The full rack was nearly a foot long, and mine just over 6 inches. They were absolutely wonderful, you would go to pick them up and the meat would just fall off it. It’s safe to say that we were both stuffed by the time we had finished, so we retired for the evening to digest – ready for breakfast in the morning!
Our final day was Sunday and we started it with a wonderful breakfast at The Hanky Panky Pancake House *Stifles immature giggles*. Hidden away down a side street you wouldn’t know about it unless you did your research first, but if you are ever in the area, it is well worth a visit. It was absolutely packed in there – so again we knew it would be great! We had 3 fluffy American pancakes each; mine were slathered in Nutella & Maple Syrup with a sprinkling of crumbled Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups on top. YUM. It really was the cherry onto of a perfect weekend! After this we walked the walls of Chester, the Roman Gardens and the Amphitheatre were the most impressive parts. I must say that the walls didn’t impress me as much as those in York – but I’m definitely a little bias!
Hope you liked hearing about my wonderful trip, I would encourage you to go to Chester for the weekend if you haven’t done so already! Watch this space for more of my adventures, crafty, business related, and otherwise.