Welsh Visit

Last Tuesday Nan, Sue and I drove up to North Wales. On the Monday it snowed and there was around half an inch lying on the ground, with a promise from the weather man of more to come.

As the weather forecast for the week was not good, we set off with some trepidation, but as things turned out we needn’t have worried. We picked Nan up from her Flat just after 9am and after an uneventful journey we arrived at Aunt Josie’s just before midday. She had  lunch ready for us and after salmon, mashed potato and mushy peas we drove on to our hotel, the De Vere Village in Saint David’s. After checking in then travelled on to Upton to see Ray and Jan Bengree (Sue’s relatives). They were looking after one of their daughters children and later on Ray went and fetched another  older child from school. We left soon after as it was tea-time and we gauged that we would be delaying them from eating if we stayed any longer.  Back at the hotel we watched some TV until it was time for the evening meal which we took in the Hotel restaurant, afterwards we resisted the temptation to  go out and find dome entertainment and returned to our room for a fairly early night.

The following morning, after a rather large English breakfast we decided to visit Flint Castle. We had planned to visit Noel and Gay but they had rung on Monday night letting us know that Noel was going to be in South Wales on a job interview (we re-scheduled for Thursday morning). The day was bitterly cold and quite misty but we had an excellent time. The castle was surprisingly picturesque on a such a bleak day.  After exploring the  castle ruins we decided to take the coastal walk down to the old harbour. It’s funny how age seems to let appreciate the things in life that you once passed by without a second glance or thought. We found the waders (birds) and their unique call quite fascinating and stood and watched them for quite a while. Of course we read all the information boards along the way, something I never used to do and not too many years ago would have considered an extremely boring thing to do.

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After reaching the harbour, standing ogling the view,  reading the information board, ogling the view once again, we decided that we were having such a great time that we would walk on even further down the coast. Passing more waders and considering whether they were oyster catchers or Dippers, not coming to any satisfactory conclusion, we regretted that we had not brought the binoculars. By the time we got back to the castle a couple of hours had flown by. We found a cafe and to warm us up I had hot chocolate and Sue had soup.

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We then drove over to Brymbo, picked up Nan and Josie and took them to Hope Cemetery to see the new headstone on their mother’s grave. We laid some flowers before travelling on to see Doreen. She has been quite ill recently and didn’t look well at all. We stayed for about half an hour before driving back to Brymbo to drop of Nan and Josie and returning to the hotel. That night we went out for a carvery to a nearby pub. On our return we watched some TV and again had a fairly early night.

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After yet another very large breakfast we checked out and drove to Mold to see Noel and Gay. Light snow began to fall. They live halfway up a mountain (Moel Ffamua) along a long, narrow and rough lane. We spent around three hours their catching up on family news etc. As we left, the snow began to fall a little heavier and it made the route back to Brymbo over the mountains quite spectacular and glad that I was doing it then and not a in a few hours time

When we arrived at Josie’s, we discovered that the previous night they had attempted to go to a local concert but Nan had fallen over on the pavement outside and made a mess of her eye and hand so they didn’t go. She didn’t look too bad, but was quite sheepish about the whole affair.  The snow started to come down quite heavily so we left for our journey back to Harborough. Despite the heavy traffic and the falling snow we were home by 7pm. It was 3 degrees in the house (should have left the heating on).

BREAKING NEWS:  The heavy snow that has been forecast arrived.  I completed my morning bike ride (for the first time in many months, all off-road across very hard and frozen fields) the snow really started to come down.  I read on Sarah’s face book that she had been accepted to Hallam for next year and that the fees rise to £9000. At lunchtime we got a phone call from Jamie. He was on a delivery run to Birmingham and the van had broken down, he was stuck in a snowdrift and the motorways were closed.A later phone call informed us that the company had got to him in 4X4 and they were transporting the meat from the van to where it was supposed to be going but when they got there the place was shut, they were not impresseed . The  next phone call declared that the 4X4 was now like the rest of the Midlands stuck! They were making plans to stay the night. However they managed to get the van going and ghot as far as Leicesetr before they got stuck in traffic again. After several moere hours they managed to make it back to Harborough late in the evening.


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