So for one final escape for the year, my boyfriend and I took a long weekend and headed down to York for the weekend. York was the choice because he actually lived there until he was 15, and hadn’t been back in ages. My Dad went to university there, and took us back for frequent visits, so it’s somewhere we both associate with our childhoods and happy times.
We drove down on Thursday in a hire car smelling oddly of smoke and lemons, stopping off about 100 times for tea and diet coke (and seeing the world’s cutest roadworks sign…)
Before finally arriving as the sun set at a gorgeous country hotel, the Fairfield Manor.
It’s a really nice hotel which comes with use of the local health club. I'd just settled down (in my latest festive jumper...)
But my boyfriend is basically Mr Motivator so immediately dragged me to the gym! We had to sit in traffic to get there, but it is a really good health club, and I felt quite pleased with myself for going. We got back and changed for dinner.
Then went down to the hotel bar for drinks. I love hotel bars – I just think they’re so cosy, with big sofas you can sink into and just that nice feeling that all you have to do for the rest of the day is eat dinner and have a few drinks! They’re always a bit expensive, but it’s worth it.
First night dinner was my choice, and I picked the Olive Tree, a Mediterranean restaurant in York town centre – right opposite Clifford’s Tower, which looks really nice at night.
I was really happy as we bundled into a taxi and drove through the familiar streets, lit up with Christmas decorations which made them look even prettier. It made me think about how much I love England, with its seasonal weather and the ability to wake up in central London and eight hours later be sitting down to dinner in a completely different environment.
The Olive Tree was a really lovely, middle budget type restaurant, with a set menu available on week days which I took advantage of. I went for the asparagus soup to start with, while Ian picked the very impress garlic bread (essentially a pizza!)
My main was incredible – duck in plum sauce with sweet potato mash.
The duck was perfectly cooked and I adore plum sauce, so this was a great combination for me.
Ian had pasta, which was nice, but was pretty much just pasta, and I didn’t feel it was worth a photograph! We spent the rest of the night in a bar, which happily for me already had their Christmas decorations up – the Christmas Scrooge was not impressed!
We felt a little worse for wear the next morning, but after some coffee (me)/a sandwich (him) we headed over to see my boyfriend’s old house, and spent a happy morning wandering around his old neighbourhood.
We then headed into York…but I’ll save that for tomorrow! I’m back in dreary, wet London now craving hot chocolate in little cafes and windy walks and stone castles…