Friday, December 24, 2010

Photo op

By way of this weird news story about children being subjected to the disturbing image of the remains of 8 deer that fell through a frozen lake (see 1st image, lower left), I learned of the picturesque beauty of Whitworth Hall Country Park in County Durham, England. Fortunately, the easily distracted children - like John Thomas' preschoolers Jack and Kaitlyn - were not scarred for life: "We came especially to see the deer because the kids think this is where Santa's reindeer live during the year before he comes to collect them for Christmas Eve. It was a bit of a shock to arrive and see so many of them trapped in the lake. Fortunately, my kids didn't notice because the bodies are quite far out and there are plenty that are still alive that they can look at." The park is known for its deer - which may be handfed, its ornamental lake - which may be fished, and its Victorian walled garden and vineyard - which may be walked. Whitworth Hall was the home of M.P. Bobby Shaftoe (c. 1732-1797), who is buried beneath the floor of the adjacent church, and is now an inn.

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