I love Chester Zoo, its one of my favorite places to go and i try to go each summer. We, as a family, visit the zoo where ever we are on holiday and we have been to quite a few over the past few years. We have enjoyed Longleat, Twycross, Knowsley safari park, south lakes wildlife park, New forest wildlife park to name a few. But you cant help compare them all to Chester zoo. We introduced a friends husband who came all the way from Tenerife, unfortunatley we went on one of the worst days of the summer and he renamed the zoo Chester Loo as we seemed to stop off at every toilet in the zoo 🙂 and hardly saw any of the animals as they were sheltering from the rain. Any way i digress, THIS time we had a gorgeous sunny day, the zoo has had a good breading year and we managed to see the tiger cubs, baby elephants and rhino, we didn’t see the cheetah cubs unfortunately but there were plenty of other animals to see.
Summer. You think of warm/hot sunny days, warm BBQ evenings and balmy nights. Well maybe in other countries but not in England this year. This year has been a bit wet to say the least. It has been confirmed that summer 2012 in England and Wales has been the biggest washout for a century, with the Met Office saying that it has been the one of the dullest, coolest and the soggiest since 1912.
We had been scheduled to go to Cumbria last week but received a call the day before leaving to ask if we still wished to go as they were giving out boards and tarps to all campers as it was a bit muddy. We decided to go to Derbyshire instead! While we were there we read in the paper that Cumbria was hit by heavy rain and flash flooding on Thursday forcing people to leave their homes and causing a train to derail. A landslide is thought to have caused the derailment of the train, which was travelling towards Sellafield nuclear plant. Summer this year has had just 399 hours of sunshine, it has also been cool, oh really, with a mean temperature of 14C (57F), 0.4C below average. We have experienced, some more than others, 366.8mm of rain, not quite the 384.4mm seen in the summer of 1912 but give it time.
But. Our Summer has not been all about bad weather. We have had three great weeks camping. Two weeks in Bath and Dorset and a week in Derbyshire. We have visited some fantastic places like Longleat, The Tank Museum in Bovington, Dorset, The National Brewery Centre, Burton upon Trent, Donington Park Race Track, Derby, Twycross Zoo, oh lots of lovely places and visited with a cousin and his family not seen for many years. One of the high lites of my summer holidays was the visit to Brownsea Island off the coast of Dorset. I have been a Scout leader for over eight years and i have always said i would visit the home of Scouting and i have, we had a lovely day, it was sunny, walking around the Island and visiting the Stone which marks the site of the first Scout camp in 1907. There were several Scout and Guide groups camping on the Island and we were waved to and offered tea whenever we met a group, one leader even gave my daughter a rather long peacock tail feather which is sitting in a vase on my sideboard. We had a great day and enjoyed the boat ride back to the mainland. I dont think the children got bored all holiday but i know they wont want to go back to school this week, shame. Unfortunately we missed the Olympics but we will get to see the second week of the Paralympics and will be able to cheer on our favorite athletes.
My holidays have been about reconnecting with my children, relaxing with my husband and taking lots of photographs, i think i have managed all three! It will be a wrench when everyone is back at work or school and life is back to normal but on the other hand it will give me SOME peaceful days in which to work on my photos and put them up on my blog, flickr, viewbug etc. I have put a few photos below which are my particular favorites from this summer, i hope you enjoy them. Oh and here is looking forward to October half term!