Tag Archives: Cotswolds seasons

Nodding Heads 首を振りながら

The end of January and early February see the arrival of snowdrops in the Cotswolds. These delicate, pure white flowers have their own enthusiasts, not least because they mark the passing of winter and the coming of Spring.


Snowdrops are mysterious little plants – the botanical name is Galanthus (Greek gala “milk”/ anthos “flower”) and they come with various rural suspicions, for example it’s said to be unlucky to bring them into the house.

スノードロップは神秘的な小さな植物だ - その学名は‘ガランサス’で(ギリシャ語でガラとはミルク、アンソスとは花の意)、田舎には花に関してのさまざまな迷信がいまだに残る。例えばスノードロップを家の中に持ち込むことは縁起が悪いと言われている。DSC01680This year we went to Colesbourne Park to see one of the largest collections in Britain. The private garden opens for a just few days a year, at this time, to allow people to walk around the gardens and church to see spectacular banks of snowdrops, their heads nodding in the breeze. Enthusiasm for snowdrops is high here – they’re even on the alter cloth in the church.

我々は今年、イギリス内でも最大のスノードロップのコレクションを有するガーデンのひとつであるコールズボーン.パークに行ってきた。このプライベートガーデンはガーデンや教会の周りに咲く見事なスノードロップを楽しむ人たちのために、一年のうちこの時期のみ数日一般公開される。それらのスノードロップは微風に翻っている。ここではスノードロップに関する人々の興味が一層深い。 - 教会の祭壇に掛けられる布にさえスノードロップの模様が見られるくらいだ。

There is quite a lot of variety amongst snowdrops. Some are ‘giants’, some have heart shaped marks, some long stems.

ここにはとても多くの種類のスノードロップがある。 巨大なものもあればハート型の印をつけたもの、特に茎の長いものもある。

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Anyway, an afternoon at Colesbourne is a good excuse for a winter walk and, as usual in England, wherever flowers are on display – tea, cake and a plant shop are never far away.



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A busy Saturday in the Cotswolds コッツウォルズでのある忙しい土曜日


On Saturday, we went to Stroud Farmer’s Market. It’s a good way to shop on a warm summer’s day, not a supermarket in sight.  Stroud is a slightly down-at-heel Cotswold town brought to life every Saturday by one of the best Farmer’s Markets in the country. Stroud may not be as affluent as some Cotswold villages, but the people are great and there’s more of a community atmosphere here than elsewhere.  Five valleys lead to Stroud, we approached along the ‘Slad’ valley and, on a sunny day, there’s not really a better view to be had in the Cotswolds.



Park the car in this small town on a Saturday and step straight into a busy market. Usually there are few familiar market stallholders and maybe some new ones too. You can buy most of the food you need for the week. Not especially cheap, but the quality can be very high and that’s important too. I think we’re realising that supermarket food can be too cheap. Better to eat less eat, for example, and make it the best quality, I think.

There are stalls selling different flavour of sausages (usually pork)…



…stalls selling local cheeses: these are Godsells Cheeses, double Gloucester and single Gloucester types…

....地元産のチーズもある : ゴッドセルズチーズ、ダブルグロスター、そしてシングルグロスターのタイプ...


… Day’s Cottage apple juice, from unsprayed apple trees.



…flower, vegetable and herb stalls…


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Windsurf Valley goat’s cheese, mild and yoghurt. You can buy this in London, where is costs a lot more!


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Eggs that were laid that morning.


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And there are also stalls where you can buy snacks as you look around. This stallholder sells vegan food.



A great way to spend a Saturday morning – and you feel closer to Cotswold life.

こうやって素敵な土曜の朝を過ごす - きっとコッツウォルズでの暮らしがより身近に感じられることだろう。


After the market we went home and did some gardening.



To finish a busy day, we went to a beer and cider festival, where we sat outside in a pub garden and then moved inside when it became too cold. We drank a little too much cider and finished with a beer called ‘Headsplitter’.  Hmmm. I feel OK today though.

忙しい日の締めくくりとして我々はビールとサイダー(リンゴ酒)祭りに出かけ、寒くなって中に入るまでの時間をパブのガーデンで過ごした。少しサイダーを飲み過ぎたようだが、最後に‘ヘッドスプリッタ―(頭粉砕)’というビールを飲んだ。  ウーン。しかし今日はもう大丈夫だ。

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We walked home through quiet villages under a clear, cold sky.



全てが緑に。 Everything’s Gone Green


The Cotswolds has gone green. Yesterday I stopped the car to pick up some twigs to support some pea plants. Walking on a little further I stumbled across some woods that I’d never seen before and the last of the Spring bluebells just fading fading out. Quite beautiful.



Back at home I used the twigs in a trough. 家に帰ってから、私は小枝をトラフ(図)に立てた。


It’s amazing how the pea plants bid themselves around the twigs within a few hours. Plant instinct.



クリスマスの伝統 その 2 : ヤドリギ


It’s a tradition to bring Mistletoe into the house at Christmas.


Mistletoe is a common sight in the Cotswolds, high in the trees that line the country lanes. It’s a mysterious, parasitic plant that feeds on trees and looks like a loose ball of leaves suspended from bare winter branches.


In my case, I took two boughs from my father’s apple tree this afternoon. Cutting your own mistletoe is very satisfying… it’s good for the host tree and the vivid green brightens up the house in December.


This winter, all the local mistletoe seems to be especially bright and perfect, with plenty of the usual milky white berries. Tradition says that if you stand under the mistletoe you can ask for a kiss. And there is said to be a kiss for every berry…



Slow Travel スロートラベ

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I had a visit from Japanese friends this week, Mrs Yuka Shimoda and her husband Koishi. They are very busy people (Yuka is Editor in Chief of Modern Living Magazine and Koishi is a magician, part of The Napoleons, a comedy magic act in Japan) and so a holiday is a very rare thing for them. I was really pleased that they decided to spend most of their time in one place rather than the more usual type of holiday that involves dashing all over Britain to see as much as possible. This is the idea behind ‘slow travel,’ an idea that emphasises allowing time for experiences rather then having a long list of things to ‘tick off’ a list when on holiday.


The other thing that reminded me of ‘slow travel’ recently was seeing some pictures from the much appreciated translator of this blog, Mrs Yumiko Kijima-Tivers.  Many of her clients now choose to travel more meaningfully by exploring a particular theme or idea.  Yumiko, who is a London-based Blue Badge Guide, has recently been exploring the world of William Morris for some clients and provided the pictures on this page. You can see her blog here.

最近、‘スロートラベル’に関して気が付いた別の例は、このブログの翻訳をしている木島タイヴァース由美子さんから送られた写真を見た時だった。今や彼女のクライエントの多くは特別なテーマやアイディアを追及して、より意義のある旅行をしている。由美子はロンドンをベースとするブルーバッジ.観光ガイドで、最近ウィリアム.モリスの世界を周るツアーで仕事をした際の写真が送られてきた。See her blog too!

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It’s always interesting to see what other people photograph when they visit the Cotswolds and I love the fact that her pictures are often details of real cottages rather than castles; local people’s gardens rather then large public gardens and so on. Travel slowly, meet local people and take time to enjoy local food and traditions – that’s the real way to travel!

コッツウォルズを訪れる人が撮影した写真にはいつも興味があるが、彼女の写真は、例えばお城よりは普通のコテージ、一般公開されている大きなガーデンよりは地元の人々のガーデンを撮影したものが多く、とても気に入っている。 ゆっくり旅をしよう。そして地元の人たちとの触れあい、地元の食事や伝統をゆっくり味わう ー これこそが旅行の本当の楽しみ方だ!

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Shopping – Cotswolds Style

Now that it’s Spring (and even beginning to feel like Summer), it’s good to sometimes ignore boring supermarkets and try a more unusual style of shopping.



On Saturday, a very warm day, we started by driving past nearby Winchcombe to buy some apple juice from Hayles Fruit Farm. Nextwe passed typical roadside Cotswold hedges, covered with spectacular white hawthorne blossom and what the local people call ‘cow parsley’. We headed for Farmcote Herbs, which is run by Tim and Jane. Here we bought parsley, thyme, basil, coriander and 3 different types of chilli plant.  Tim grows everything himself and has a menu of unusual types of chilli plants for sale – the British love spicy food.

私たちはヘイルズ果樹園で作られるリンゴジュースを買うために、近くのウィンチカム方面のドライブに出かけた。それはとても暖かい土曜日であった。コッツウォルズの道端でよく見かける白いサンザシの生垣や、地元の人が‘カウパセリ’と呼んでいる白い花が咲いている。果樹園の次の目的地はティムとジェイン夫妻が経営するファームコート.ハーブズだ。ここではパセリ、タイム、バジル、コリアンダー、そして3種類のチリの苗を買った。ティムは珍しい種類のチリを含む全ての苗を自分で栽培、販売している。- 英国人はスパイシーな食べ物が大好きなのだ。


We drove on past the Lavender fields at Snowshill, which are just beginning to show their colour.  We visited Old Farm, a farm shop near Moreton-in-Marsh, to buy some cheese,  bread, pork sausages, new potatoes and onions.  We tried a taster of ‘Righton’s Ruin’, a new cider named after the owners. Sarah and Simon Righton.


By now we were hungry, so we stopped  at my favourite Pub in the Cotswolds, which is the Plough Inn at Kingham. Emily Watkins, the Chef proprietor, is very skilled at finding local producers and takes the trouble to make almost everything in the kitchen ‘from scratch’ (that means ‘from the start’), from beautiful ingredients. As it was a hot day, I had a classic, deceptively simple ‘Ploughman’s lunch’. You see ‘Ploughman’s lunch’ on many English pub menus – it usually includes bread, cheese, pickles, butter and tomato or salad. Emily’s was perfect. Homemade bread, ham and a delicious Double Gloucester cheese came with salad – delicate leaves that you knew had been picked nearby and very recently.

さて、そろそろお腹もすいてきたのでコッツウォルズで私が気に入っているパブに行くことにした。キンガムにあるプラウ.インだ。オーナーシェフであるエミリー.ワトキンズは地元の生産者を見つけるのが得意だ。そして彼女は彼らの素晴らしい材料を使って、ほとんど全てのものを彼女のキッチンで作るように努力している。その日は暑い日だったので私は迷わずにシンプルでクラシックな‘プラウマンズ.ランチ’をオーダーした。‘プラウマンズ.ランチ’は多くのイングリッシュパブのメニューに載っている。- パン、チーズ、ピクルス、バター、そしてトマト、またはサラダがついてくる。しかし、エミリーのものは完璧だ。ホームメードのパン、ハムと美味しいダブルグロスター.チーズにサラダが皿を飾る。サラダのデリケートな葉を見れば、それは直前に、そしてすぐ近くで摘まれたものということがすぐにわかる。

On the way home we stopped at another farm to buy a chicken and some eggs.


Just as we got back we noticed that the local junk shop had a garden table and chairs for sale. These are things that our garden has needed for a long time, so I bought them at 1/4 of the price of the garden shop versions.  And very nice they look too…



It was a great day for shopping and it beat going to the High Street…  it’s also a nice feeling to support growers and farmers who make high-quality food in the Cotswolds.