I’ll admit to being a dragon fan. One of my favourite things to craft. I can’t resist a dragon legend. The fact that these legends seem to pop up in all corners of the world, is fascinating in its own right. So when we heard of a legend, practically on our doorstep, we had to investigate.
The Bishops’s Palace in Wells has opened a play area based around a dragon legend. Tucked between the allotments and the towering walls. It is so well planned. A place to explore and inspire imaginative play.
There is a tunnel that leads to a story telling area. We missed that day’s story, but something tells me that tall tales were still told and heard, as they hung out in the tunnel.
Seeing as this is Wells, with myriads of natural springs, it was only right that there would also be a water pump for the children to try.
Sending water down a zig-zagging route to a bucket that would never hold much.
There were bridges to cross,
mazes to escape,
trees to climb and
dragons to stroke and dream of keeping as a pet.
Not forgetting battlements to conquor.
I loved the natural materials and the open ended play that it provided. Plenty of room for imagination to fill in any gaps in the stories. To tempt all ages, me thinks.
I listened to a mother helping her young son to tell a story, as he rushed around acting it out. I smiled. My own children are older and don’t need my story telling encouragement so much now. They have their own stories to tell. Delightful and fun. Spurred on by each other. Very much their stories, not mine. Their stories are part of a game that they play together. It is fascinating to see them grow. In imagination too.
This is a play area to encourage imagination, rather than daring deeds. Especially as the dragon will never be forgotten now, so no need to worry about the 50 years curse….hey!
Or is there…? I mean, have you seen those teeth? I’m not sure. It could be a trick of the light, but I’m certain I saw the eyes move, a minute ago. Did anyone else? Just me. Ah. Well. I’ll leave you to it then. All the same, I wouldn’t get too close, if I was you. Up to you, of course. Oh look. That time already. Might just head home while it’s still light. Fare you well. See you soon….. I hope.
We’ve almost reached the half way mark of the summer holidays. Our holiday rhythm is established. Mainly based on the weather. If the sun is out, then the doors are flung open (and quickly shut behind us, because of the hornets) and the great outdoors beckons. If it rains, then mountains of books are read or sewing completed, in my case.
This week the books seem to be winning the race.
On one bright, sunny day this week, we popped into Bath. A visit to Toppings, the book shop, and the second hand book stall in the Guild Hall market resulted in a few more books for the children and their father.
We also went to see the Dragon exhibition at the Victoria Art Gallery. If you have children, have an hour to kill and are near Bath this summer, I can recommend it. My book loving children were thrilled to see illustrations from their favourite dragon books, hung on the walls. There are activities which would appeal to the 10 and under group. Children can go in free, while it’s £4 for adults.
(lego version of the front cover of “How to train your dragon”)
Once home, the exhibition inspired a bit of drawing and dragon origami, which I hoped it would, but the books soon took over. I don’t mind. I love to hear them discussing their books with each other. Analysing the stories.
It is all about balance. Over the weekend, their cousin came to visit. We managed one walk, a Park run, plus an evening in the garden, playing cards and toasting marshmallows over the fire, to make smores.
Then back to books… and rain.
(dragon at Bishop’s Palace)
Yesterday, we escaped and spent the afternoon in Wells at the Bishop’s Palace. We’ve been before, but they’ve opened a natural play area, based on a dragon legend, this year. I’m impressed and the children loved it. Dragons and imagination. What more could you ask for? It deserves its own post.
(they “re-jigged” my chalk board message about eating cucumbers)
In other news:
– We’re learning to live with the hornets and no traps have been deployed.
– I’m sewing a blouse. Pushing myself out of my comfort zone by using silky fabric. So slippy and liable to fray.
– We’re in cucumber season (spaghetti squash, apple and cabbage too). It’s always a problem that the abundance of one food can soon generate groans and eye rolling. I keep reminding the children of the taste of supermarket cucumbers in the winter.
(wings at Bishop’s Palace)
Looking back at the week, books and dragons seemed to be a theme, but I’m going with dragons for my word of the week. After all books happen every week. I don’t often get to indulge my passion for dragons.