Wednesday, 11 September 2013

The Orchard Tea Gardens

I only know that you may lie 
Day-long and watch the Cambridge sky, 
And, flower-lulled in sleepy grass, 
Hear the cool lapse of hours pass, 
Until the centuries blend and blur 
In Grantchester, in Grantchester 
-Rupert Brooke

On a beautifully sunny day this summer, my grandparents whisked my sister and I away for a day. A day out with the grandparents is one of those little treats I've always enjoyed, and this one was no exception. 

We headed towards Grantchester, Cambridge, to a little but very famous tea garden. The Orchard prides itself on being the place 'where more people have taken tea than anywhere else in the world'. The list of famous poets, writers and philosophers who have lunched here is very impressive, and as literature lovers we all revelled in the fact that Woolf, Brooke and Forster had sat where we were about to sit! 

The Orchard is over 115 years old, and apparently not a lot has changed the whole time it has been here. The quaint wooden shack is covered in black boards with all the specials of the day, and the simple but delicious looking foods all jumped out at once! 

Grandma & I went for the same thing, roast chicken breast coated in red pesto and served on a bed of lettuce with home made bread. Grandpa and Molly went for baguettes. My tipple of choice was Belvoir presse's raspberry lemonade, which I highly recommend to all those liking a refreshing drink. 

We munched and mingled, talking all about the history of the Orchard and about all the fascinating conversations which must have been had there. After finishing our lunch, we decided a walk along the river was a must. 
We wondered along the river, watching punters go by and listening to the countryside sounds. After a laze on the river bank, we headed back towards the Orchard.

 After walking off lunch, we decided a little sweet was in order. Molly, Grandma and I went for little ice cream tubs just like in the theatre. 

Grandpa had a cream tea, of course! 

Last stop was a snoop around the Rupert Brooke museum, where the history of his time in Cambridge was laid out. Of course, Molly and I had to have a touristy picture outside!

I cannot wait to return, and to paraphrase Brooke himself, this is a corner of a field which is, and should always stay, forever England.

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