16.04.2011 18 °C
Well, hello again and here we are on day 2 of this Euro extravaganza!
Some of you may have noticed that our communication is a bit sparse-
Well, fairly none existent really with no end to issues of mobile phone UK sim cards
and internet non-connection. Message here to anyone travelling….getting a UK
sim looks like a cheaper solution…but for the 5 of us…Global sim cards have been
a real pain in the bum! Overcharging heaps for what we thought was a 15c call
rate….ha! what a joke! Heidi and Tony beware
Anyway, enough of that…..
Seriously this is an amazing experience for all of us and for all you disbelievers
out there, we are all getting on famously….having heaps of laughs and seeing
some absolutely incredible things.
So Day 2 took us for a leisurely drive through
North Wales(Tim Knott territory) where we visited Holywell and the well of St Winifred-
It’s the ‘Lourdes of Wales’ and has been the place of pilgrimage for about 1200 years…and some graffiti we noticed dated 1610…quite an incredible place and most peaceful.From there we drove around the coast through various little towns with huge names with no vowels…(the welsh language is indeed a strange beast)
We got to Conwy , a beautiful little seaside town with an enormously imposing castle ruin..and we got our first castle experience! Bloody high they are…and would’ve been soooo cold! But fantastic all the same.
Coming from Australia with such a baby history of 200 or so years….here in the UK 200 years is considered positively modern!
We grabbed a quick lunch of fish and chips…and a pie floater(!pity about the close quarters!) and got on the road.
After our castle walk we moved onto Bodnant Gardens where Robyn was in 7th heaven. As its springtime here at the moment and we are treated with roadside daffodils and bluebells everywhere..the likes I’ve never seen before.
Bodnant gardens is a National Trust Gardens
and hosts a plethora of beautiful plantlife. We had a lovely afternoon strolling the grounds with Robyn relishing every minute plant detail…and the rest of us taking some interesting photographic angles to challenge our photographic skills!
After a fairly hefty 2 hour drive home Viv baked us a beautiful salmon with all the trimmings and a Strawberry Elizabeth…very yummy and very spoilt we’ve been.
That night Lisa arranged to meet a few of her local friends and cousins around at the Royal Oak…their local and very homely little pub where all the locals were packed in watching football on the TV…?mon night and all.
On Tues morning lisa had very kindly arranged with Anne ( Tim Knotts mum ) to meet us at Llangollen ( a typical Welsh village on the River Dee ) where stands an enormous hill overlooking the valley. Absolutely, picture perfect it is…and an ancient Castelle Dinas Bran (a castle ruin) stands right on top of this enormously high hill. Being a little Welsh mountain pony herself..Anne led us up the hill ..God, how fit is she? very steep with a few bemused Welsh sheep laughing at the 5 of us trudge up this very steep incline..but worth every step with magnificent views and incredible history of this amazing place.
It was equally as hairy coming down and we were all very proud of our efforts that day!
Sadly, I was walking back to the car and fell over some gravel on the road and rolling my ankle and my whole self arse over the proverbial!….shheeshhh, go figure! Mahony fell about laughing and such is the sympathy one gets from friends!
Anne also showed us around the area to a few other sites…an old aquaduct still functioning canal boats around the area..so pretty.
We visited the horseshoe pass up at the highest point in the area- slate is quarried there and has been for 100s of years. Morning tea at the Ponderosa(!) and back down to Llangollen…try pronouncing that with a guttural ‘ch’sound and glottal sounds…still
Cant do it..
After a bit of local shopping in the village we had a lovely dinner at the Corn Mill restaurant with Anne, Viv and Anne( try and work that one out!..well, Tims mum and Lisas parents!)
So lovely of Anne to spend the day with us…we had a ball!
Wednesday was out last day in Chester so thought we’d do a quiet one and wander around shopping and checking out more of the local sights.
Gotta love Marks and Spencers…don’t worry boys…we cant get too much! Our luggage is already borderline weighted@!
Mahony and I did a river Dee cruise…very quaint and saw some incredible homes along the way!
Roast duck with orange sauce was on the menu for tea..thanks to Ann( boy, she really knows how to spoil us!) We had such a lovely time with them, we are a bit sad to say goodbye to Hamilton Court Hotel!....and to Alex, our favourite breakfast waitress/cook!
Thursday morning we picked up our hire car( Vauxhall Zafira) and packed our gear like sardines….and off we headed south to Bath.