Hola! Hope you're smiling :)
No Windermere, no Hawkshead, no Hadrian’s Wall, no Edinburgh, no Glasgow – I went nowhere and stayed only in Longtown though all those places are no more than an hour or two away from Carlisle. I abandoned all travel plans and stayed on the farm in Longtown for I felt at home there. The caravan on The Fauld was my home, I felt like a local.
One of the things that endeared me to this lovely town of Longtown is the road between The Fauld and the Longtown bus-top/towncentre. Stretching to upto 2 miles, I felt a great sense of comfort and joy walking up and down. It didn’t begin like that. Considering how little I walk, I dreaded the distance when I first reached The Fauld in a taxi – I couldn’t help but exclaim in disbelief, much to the wonder of the taxi driver “This far away from any pub, any shop, any bus-stop!!” I was almost certain of moving to Carlisle, check into a B&B the next day and go about my travels. But my host Artur’s kindness and the warmth of this town changed my mind.
On this road between the farm and Longtown centre are lovely views – a large farm, Charlie’s neighbours, the Arthuret, the Arturet Home, two horses on a patch of land away from the street, a bridge from where I once had a conversation with Charlie on his quad, driving his cows under the bridge, a cricket ground, and beautiful homes.
I walked this road at least twice everyday.
Five minutes from The Fauld is the Arthuret – Arthuret Church, which is on the outskirts of Longtown, dates from 1150. It was originally served by the monks of Jedbergh. The present Church, dedicated to St Michael and All Angels was built in 1609 in a late Gothic style. The building was financed by a collection taken throughout the realm in the reign of King James I, because the people were considered to be without faith.
Archie Armstrong, favourite Court Jester to James I, and later Charles I, is buried in the Churchyard. In the Churchyard is also an unusual stone cross, consisting of two parts of an early medieval wheel-head cross clamped together on a tapering shaft with 19th Century decorations. The Arthuret was one of only eight places marked on the first printed map of Scotland made in 1570, produced by Abraham Ortelius.
The church tower stones are unusual in that many of them have masons marks which are clearly visible. This church was built as a result of a national fundraising to benefit the parishioners who were mainly rejecting Christ’s teachings. Part of the sum was stolen and this delayed the construction of the new church.
Near the church on the west side and situated half way down the escarpment is a spring known as St Michael’s Well. The water from this well is sometimes used for baptism.
Here I spent an afternoon in silent company. Peace looks a little bit like this…
On this road is a cricket ground which I was very excited to see the first day and on day three there was some action. The players didn’t seem to expect any attention for when I stopped to watch their game, I heard someone say ‘we seem to have ladies come to the play today’ LOL. I couldn’t stay long enough to get their autographs 😦
I watched the game from this lovely, lovely bridge. As I stood there, I heard someone’s ‘hoy-hoy!’ – music to my ear. I wondered if it was Artur but it didn’t quite seem like Artur’s voice. The voice seemed to approach where I stood so I waited and soon saw cows. They seemed like ‘our cows’ cows from The Fauld. And soon Charlie emerged on his quad, driving the cows from his neighbour’s farm into his, from under the bridge. I stood there and tried to have a conversation with him. He stopped his quad and spoke but sweet Charlie’s accent is mighty Irish and I didn’t get a thing, we decided to speak on the farm but to speak with him from over the bridge while he stood under was awesome 🙂
The next day when Artur and I decided to go to Carlisle, this poor, lost kitten followed us and meowed us to stop. Artur was happy to meet her and had half a mind to take her with him – we decided we would take her to the caravan if she was still there on our way back from Carlisle, she wasn’t. We hope someone kind has taken her in.
My only wish while in Longtown was that these horses are closer to the road so I could watch them for hours.
I wasn’t always the only one on the road, sometimes there were men walking their dogs, some with their babies in prams, cyclists, some in cars, some on tractors, some cats, some dogs.