Swimming at Starbeck Baths and Sunday Stroganoff

Last day of the holidays, (boo hiss!) but it has been a really nice one. Drinking wine in the afternoon generally makes any day a nice one!

I actually woke up early (ish) for once and nipped into Harrogate to go to Blacks, the outdoors shop near the station. I’m taking a Bronze Duke of Edinburgh group out on expedition in a few weeks, and doing my own Gold Award over summer, so thought I should take advantage of their half term sale. I got a good quality (and very girly matching purple) waterproof coat and rucksack for a really good price and the sales guy was absolutely lovely and really helpful. He gave loads of good advice on what brands to go for and even helped measure me and adjust the straps on the rucksack. So dark haired guy in the glasses who works in Blacks, thank you very much!

Coming home to check on the boyfriend’s promised tidy of the spare room, I was informed that I wasn’t needed so I headed out again to try out the swimming pool in Starbeck. It is situated in what looks like a dodgy, run down area off the main street, but actually was a lovely old baths. A little over-priced to get in (£4.40) but it was the warmest swimming pool I’ve every been in and so it gets massive brownie points from me!

The pool itself was old and needed some TLC and was quite narrow which meant you had to be very careful of collision, but I had a good swim; 40 lengths in 30 minutes isn’t bad! I think I will be visiting regularly as I forgot how much I love swimming and it’s an actually enjoyable form of exercise, unlike the dreaded gym. The only issue was that they charged for the hairdryers and I didn’t have a 20p coin that was needed, so I had to walk home with wet hair. But it was pouring with rain, so it didn’t really matter in the end!

Just as I got home, with perfect timing, two of our friends arrived for a late Sunday lunch. I was very impressed with the veggie boyfriend’s cooking of Beef Stroganoff with minimal culinary disasters and mess, and it was so nice just to have a catch up, even if the boys did end up talking about dinosaurs and Star Wars. We did start on the wine quite early and had a couple of glasses each, so I’m feeling pleasantly cheerful at the moment. If you’re looking for a good recipe for stroganoff that allows you to set things on fire, I recommend this even just for the spectator value! http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/beefstroganoffwithsa_89439

Overall, a lovely time was had and it’s summed up this holiday nicely, but I do have to face up to the fact that I have lessons to plan and books to mark. I feel like I’ve actually had a break this half term, tried some new things and had a bit of fun, so it’s all good. There is plenty more planned for the next few weekends which I’m looking forwards to, and it’s only 5 weeks until the Easter holidays!

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