October half term…too chilly and wet in the UK for a camping break but a week away in a lodge in the middle of nowhere was just what the doctor ordered for myself and Guy Rope #1. As soon as work ended on the Friday, we filled the car (much easier this time around without us having to pack the tent and everything but the kitchen sink) and off we set for dreamy Dorset. I say dreamy Dorset, the torrential rain we experienced en route meant it seemed anything but dreamy…dull, dreary, damp and dismal seemed more fitting. Nonetheless, we were excited and couldn’t wait to arrive!
Motorways quickly turned into A roads and A roads quickly turned into narrow, winding country lanes…we really were driving out into the sticks, perfect for a week of relaxation, rest and recuperation. Upon arrival, the torrential rain decided to become even more torrential and we had to leg it from the car into the lodge…the bags could wait! As soon as we entered our home for the week, I could feel a weight being lifted off my shoulders. The lodge was simply idyllic; rustic, wooden and designed for luxurious comfort. As we arrived in the evening and as our lodge was located in an area of outstanding natural beauty, there was complete and utter darkness outside meaning we were going to have to wait to explore our lodge from the outside. I suddenly turned into an impatient child waiting for Christmas day to arrive… “Should we have an early night? I want to wake up already!”. Luckily, I had a roaring log burner and bubble bath to keep me preoccupied.
When we awoke the next morning, it really did feel like Christmas day morning. I jumped up out of bed and rushed to the window. I gasped in awe as I realised we were surrounded by hundreds of fir trees! We also had a hot tub! I felt like I was in Lapland without the snow and reindeer. It really did feel like we were in the middle of nowhere. Whilst there were no reindeer in sight, we did enjoy watching rabbits and different types of bird from our lodge whilst we were snuggled up inside. However, I have to say that there were a couple of occasions when we weren’t so thrilled to be surrounded by so much nature. The first occasion, Guy Rope #1 was preparing his infamous eggs benedict on our first morning whilst I was ‘helping’…I say helping, I was staring out of the windows admiring our views. I had someone cooking me breakfast whilst I was taking in breath taking scenery, nothing was going to spoil this moment until….SPLAT! No, it wasn’t bird poo this time…it was A BIRD! A wood pigeon had flown into our window, splatted against it, rolled down the hill and died… “Breakfast is ready! Come and tuck in” …my moment had died… along with the pigeon. The second occasion involved a fox knocking over our outside bin and tearing open the bin bag so it could sift through the contents… picking up rubbish from the floor in the pitch black whilst it’s chucking it down is also quite the romance killer.
When we weren’t soaking up the atmosphere and the bubbles in our hot tub or snuggled up in front of the fire eating chocolate, drinking wine and putting the world to rights, we were out enjoying local grub! Whilst on holiday, we tend to eat our entire bodyweight in food but oh my, it is worth it! We were lucky to have The Fox Inn a stone’s throw away from our lodge where we enjoyed really friendly service and great pub grub! But in particular, we LOVED Georgie Porgie Pie & Burger Co. in Dorchester. I’m a pretty poor Northerner really as I’m not overly keen on pies but this place completely changed my mind! They offer a whole range of pies and they are all made from scratch there and then with fresh ingredients. I wholeheartedly recommend that you visit if you’re ever in the area! They even offer meals for those with stomachs that resemble bottomless pits…on our second visit there (I did tell you that we loved it!), Guy Rope #1 ordered the pie and burger combo and it was MASSIVE! We still managed to find room for dessert though, of course. We certainly left with very full but very happy bellies.
In our week away in the middle of nowhere, we did experience a day polar opposite to the rest as we caught the train to London. Prior to booking our week away, we had booked tickets to see Les Misérables: The Staged Concert with the parents and Jellybean and Guy Rope #2 so we left our tranquillity and headed to The Big Smoke for the day to enjoy the hustle and bustle. A spot of sightseeing and a meal out followed by enjoying the company of West End legends including Alfie Boe and Michael Ball. A wonderful fun-packed family day out was enjoyed by all which made leaving our lodge of luxury behind for the day completely worthwhile.
Upon returning from busy London life, we had one more day to enjoy our haven so we were sure to make the most of our hot tub and log burner in particular. All in all, we had the perfect week and whilst we were gutted to leave, we drove away knowing that we had relished every second of our idyllic week away. To drag out our holiday for as long as possible, we stopped at ‘sculpture by the lakes’ for a spot of brunch and a walk…food, fresh air and no kids allowed – the ideal finish to a brilliant half term.