Last Sunday as the weather was so nice, we finally got to Castle Combe in Wiltshire. Seeing as it was on the sad llama list it was about time too. My parents are regular visitors to the nearby Castle Combe circuit and auctions and have always said how beautiful the area was, but I had never ventured there. It is known as the prettiest village in England and is in the Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. It is easy to see why, even on a cold November Sunday. The chimney pots billowing smoke made the narrow, windy rows of cream stone cottages look even more adorable. The village is extremely popular with visitors all year round, so patience is definitely needed if you desire photos with no one else in them.
There are two tea rooms and two pubs in the village as well as probably the best thing I have ever seen… a cake stand with an honesty box. I started to feel like this was my destined home and then we stumbled upon a house called Unicorn Cottage which sealed the deal!
It was also a great excuse to wear my latest wardrobe addition… another jumper. This time a vibrant red one with an adorable Dalmatian on it. I seem to have an obsession with dog jumpers at the moment. I guess you can never have enough! This beauty was £14 from George at Asda! I love it, its unbelievably soft and has sleeves long enough to accommodated my orang-utan style arms!
On Monday, the Queen of Darkness and I celebrated getting through the day by going to our local pub in the village for drinks. And chips and chocolate cake. Usually this time of year I feel throughly depressed about the weather, the cold, the dark, being away from home… the list goes on. But at the moment I’m actually doing ok, I think living in the countryside is helping quite a bit. It’s not home but it feels closer to it and its so peaceful. Although probably the biggest bonus of all is I can actually park outside the front door. Last year it took 7 laps of the block, several u-turns and a prayer to find a parking spot anywhere near out flat in Cotham. I’m also making an effort to be more social this year, which I think is helping quite a bit. Friendships are so good for the soul.
Tuesday evening, my llama supporter and I went to Las Iguanas for dinner. They had an offer on Monday-Thursday ( I love an offer) for buy one get one free on all mains. Las Iguanas is one of my favourite places to eat, I love Latin American food. I made an error on Tuesday night though. I started with the make your own guacamole, which was so tasty! It comes with gluten free tortilla chips, chopped tomatoes, onion and parsley. I left the onions as per the instructions of the FODMAP diet. Then it was onto mains. I always, and I mean always have the chilli con carne with the mild butter. Except this time, this time I opted for their revised (menu says new but its just been slightly altered) sea bass, crab and prawn gluten free dish. I had high expectations for this as I am a sea food fiend. But I found myself quite a disappointed llama. I didn’t even eat half of it, it was so bland. I felt quite sad about it. Even my llama supporter who could be described as a gannet when it comes to food, didn’t finish it for me. Luckily dessert made up for it. I had churros with caramel sauce and a side order of buscopan and llama supporter had the Aztec chocolate cake, his all time favourite. I think it’ll be back to the gluten free chilli again next time.
It’s been a quiet week as uni work has ramped up another gear and the return of group projects has begun! So a lot of this week has been spent on research, catching up on notes and trying to make sure I have a vague idea of what’s going on. There’s a lot to do before now and the end of term and not that much time to do it in!
I’m feeling slightly more positive about the FODMAP diet now than I was this time last week. It’s very daunting and quite depressing, seeing a huge list of foods that you have to avoid entirely or reduce as much as possible. I already feel quite restricted when I eat out and this change made me feel even worse about it all. But I have already noticed a difference, in just a week, which is a huge positive. Especially as I have been feeling absolutely horrendous lately. I felt like I was in an endless circle of pain and stress. I’m still in pain, but no where near as bad as the last few weeks. And I can get my jeans on! Long may it continue!
Tomorrow we’re grabbing brunch with llama supporter’s friends and then I’m going shopping in the German Christmas market! I’ve already started sporting my Christmas jumpers! So excited! Right now I’m off to watch a film in bed if we can eventually decide on one.
As always, thank you for taking the time to read my post.