Christmas festivities are not top of our agenda as often commercialism is too evident with the inevitable push and shove of the crowd. We have had to cancel a few of the special Christmas craft fairs due to inclement weather but this weekend there was a yuletide market closer to home in Rowallane National Trust gardens. We could leave our plans to the last minute and took a slight risk with the weather as the morning proved a better day for ducks! We left home in the rain, with doubts and feeling weary thinking we might end up coming home but we are pleased to report the weather was good to us (ok I was cold but better than being soaked and cold) Rowallane’s event was well organised and added a touch of wonder to the atmosphere with reindeers, goats and off course Santa Claus, immaculately dressed.
Children watched with open eyes as Santa walked about, no charges for photographs or plastic toys, just a few sweets in Santa’s sack although he didn’t offer any to us! The smoke from braziers dotted about lent a warmth to the experience although my hair wasn’t keen on the ‘smokey’ perfume I came home with. We were free to wander without being pushed about and stop to take photos to share our experience with you. The courtyard had craft stalls around with some crafts in the old stone buildings. Hot hog roast was served outside with home baking and coffee which dad could only look at an long for as it really was home made and one of his old time favourites of hot apple pie. People were enjoying the treats they had bought. We stopped to chat to the man who had painted notecards with some of our favourite birds.
The main draw in the courtyard was a lively choir. They brought happiness to all who stopped to listen as they sang Christmas songs with joy. We were actually pleased when they took a break or we wouldn’t have moved from the spot as the singing was refreshing and far apart from the loud booms and screeches which seems to resound when trying to shop in the city. Congratulations to the choir for their contribution to the atmosphere. They were a jolly happy bunch!
It is a pleasure to publish this blog as I didn’t think I would enjoy any festive festivities this year yet Rowallane had one of the smaller events but with a big heart to welcome all who visited over the weekend. I haven’t been feeling in top form and didn’t want to be out but yesterday my heart was touched. I was very nervous even being out but came home feeling there was care in this world. We have to say the animals were extremely well cared for which is not always the case. An afternoon we will remember and if this is the only festive event we attend this year then we will treasure our memory and photographs.