The United Kingdom was never a part of my original unplanned plan. Before I left to Europe, I’ve been telling everyone at home that the U.K. was out of the picture. The U.S. dollar sucks there! But all it took was one little message from my old traveling partner, Lucy, to get me across the pond from Dublin over into Sheffield. She saw on Facebook that I was in Ireland, just a short flight away from England and commented saying “Get your tail to Sheffield boy”! I didn’t need too much convincing. It’d be a nice detour before I make way over to Germany.
If you recall, I met Lucy two years ago in Muizenberg, South Africa and then reunited with her last year in Vietnam. We traveled through Vietnam, Laos, and parts of Thailand together. The last we saw of each other was at the jungle party on Koh Phangnan in Thailand.
The flight from Dublin to Manchester, England was seamless. From there, I took a train into Sheffield. I walked along with my giant backpack and little backpack in tow and there she was waiting for me. Boy, it was nice to see her again, even more so because it was completely unplanned!
As Lucy was giving me a tour around her city, we caught up on what we’ve been up to the past year since we last saw each other. Lucy has been working ever since and has also decided to further her education. She still has very intent plans to travel some more of the world in the near future, which was great to hear!
Upon walking around the city, I met Lucy’s hilarious older sister E.J. while she was working. Once she was off, she gave us a ride to their home, which was in a village in a place called Woodsetts. It was a legit village, with horses, crops, and farmland as her backyard. Lucy always mentioned she lived in a village in the countryside before and she wasn’t exaggerating one bit. Her home was also village-like in terms of esthetics. I liked to describe it as a labyrinth of coziness because I often found myself confused as to where I was going. Lucy was so great that she had a spare room all set and ready for me in such short notice.
Just shortly after getting settled in, I met Lucy’s older brother Dave and their mother Linda Wright. I have a pretty good sense of telling when people are really genuine or not and Linda was nothing but. She was glad to have me and her actions spoke of it! She was in the midst of preparing me my first Sunday roast, a typical English dinner, and even bought me cereal to make me feel at home.
That was Lucy’s prime suggestion! From the onset, Lucy and her siblings were nothing alike. They didn’t even look a little similar. But they were nothing but nice from the get-go.
The next day, Lucy planned for us to walk over to a nearby Butterfly House just beyond the acres of farmland behind her house. It was actually a really neat walk in the countryside and was a nice change of pace from all the walks I’ve endured recently in big cities like Dublin, Paris, and Amsterdam.
The Butterfly house wasn’t an ordinary butterfly house, it was actually that alongside a small-scale zoo. The place was perfect to spend an afternoon just mozying along.
We spent a good chunk of the afternoon there before we made our way back home. It was then that I finally met Lucy’s dad Richard Wright. He planned for all of us to go out for nice dinner in the city, with my choice of restaurant. How nice are they! I asked what kind of restaurants were around and from the choices I decided to go with Indian food. I love Indian food, especially the curry and I think it was a great choice. Curry always does the trick.
Yeah, so far my stay with the Wright family has been pleasant and relaxing. They still wanted me to have a proper English visit outside of what I saw in London a couple Christmas’ ago. That same night. Richard Wright decided we will visit Chatsworth the next day. What the heck is Chatsworth? You shall see 🙂