We stopped for coffee in a gorgeous old building - a Tudor Tavern - with wonderfully textured beams dating back to 1578 now leased by Caffe Nero!
It was dark inside and it was so cosy. We sat and talked about lots of changes going on in our home - the job change (started 2 weeks ago) my medication adjustments/ condition, family, money... It felt good to reconnect and reassure each other that despite all the ongoing changes there are still some comforting constants in our little world.
We only walked a short distance through the main streets as I wasn't on good form physically but as we walked I found it most interesting to look towards the tops of the buildings. It struck me that here the building facades literally demonstrate the architectural trends passing over time.
We were walking down the main high street lined with modern shopping fronts with different building facades of varying architectural styles above. One street literally ended with a beautiful church with such intricate stone work.
"The sandstone church of St Mary Magdalene in Taunton was completed in 1508. The 163 feet (50 m) tall tower is considered the finest example of a Somerset tower and one of the 'noblest' parish towers in England.
During construction of the tower a pulley was used to lift the stone with a donkey pulling the rope. It is said that on completion the donkey was hoisted to the top to admire the view it had helped create!"
...with its very own portcullis?!
Again, on our return home I looked it up and wikipedia states:
"It has origins in the Anglo Saxon period and was later the site of a priory. The Normans then built a stone structured castle, which belonged to the Bishops of Winchester."
Neither of us grew up in this area and our original homes / family live over 2 hours away in separate directions. Whilst we know our home counties well we are still exploring Somerset. We made a pledge at the beginning of the year to spend more time exploring the county and finding our new favourite places rather than spending most of our time visiting our 'old' homes. Whilst Cornwall will always feel like home to me, I'm enjoying the process of making this county feel like home for our family; developing a fondness for the surrounding landscapes and exploring more widely this beautiful part of the world.