• Cara Goulding

Weekend in Wales

On Easter Friday we travelled in to the deepest darkest Wales (Pembrokeshire) to stay with some old friends and their 2 year old and dog. This is only the second time we have been to see them in two years, the last being when she was pregnant with said two year old, as the journey is a long 6 hours and train fares aren’t exactly cheap. We booked the train a couple of months in advance and waited patiently for the day to arrive.

With a 5.30am wakeup, we hopped on the first leg of our journey at 7.30am armed with chai tea/coffee and chocolate and orange hot cross buns because, Easter. We changed in Newport and boarded our second train where we sought the train conductor as the next stop was a request stop, which shows just how deep into Wales we were going. The journey passed without incident and we jumped off the train and into a waiting car and a very friendly hug.

After the grand tour of their new (to us) home we sat down for soup and bread before heading out for a walk to clear London from our lungs. Our hosts took us to Newport Parrog beach where we skipped stones, and took in the views and scenery. We stopped at a pub on the walk back to the car for a refreshing drink before heading back to the house where we carried on with more drink and a delicious home cooked meal.

Saturday saw an early start, for Leigh and I at least, and we were bundled out of the house at 10am for a day of adventures. We started the day by heading to Abereiddy which boasts a blue lagoon, formed in the ruins of a small slate quarry, which became flooded by the sea. There are also ruins of slate houses known as The Street which remain near the beach and were used by the quarry workers. We watched some divers jumping from the cliff edge, which seemed to be especially enjoyed by their little girl, although she also enjoyed the rocks on the beach so it turns out it doesn’t take much to make a toodler happy!

For lunch we headed into Porthgain, a small village known for its industrial harbour in the early 1900's. We ate lunch in a pub called The Sloop, which used to be called the ‘Step In’ when boats were able to dock beside the pub and the crews could step in. I had some very good fish and chips and a pint of proper flat cider. We had a walk around the harbour and stopped in at an art gallery before piling back into the car for the final stop on our adventure day, St. David’s. I have never been before but Leigh had when he was younger so was excited to see it again. We had a walk around the Cathedral, whose presence allows St. David’s to be known as Britain’s smallest city, took in the ruins of the 13th-century Bishop's Palace and scoffed ice-cream from the local shop. With tired feet and yawning like mad due to all of the fresh air we headed home.

As the sun rose on Easter Sunday we packed into the car and drove to Scolton Manor, just outside Haverfordwest, for an Easter egg hunt and a chance to meet some baby animals. We walked around the grounds, the adults competing more to find the eggs than the child, and after getting a little lost we were back on track and completed the hunt just in time to go and meet a rabbit, guinea pig, tortoise and chick. The latter of which I really wasn’t happy about and shrank back into my chair to avoid. We partook in some arts and crafts before grabbing a quick bite to eat and heading outside for playground time! Is there anything nicer than the sound of pure joy and laughter as their little girl took to the swings and had a great time with it. It was getting quite cold by the time we travelled back to the house and so we sat on the sofa eating chocolate and watching Oliver, and singing along. The day ended with another home cooked meal, oreo cheesecake and a rowdy game of Cranium. A perfect end to an Easter Sunday!

Sadly we had to head home on Monday and so we were dropped off at the station, flagged down our train (request stop remember!) and headed back to London with clear lungs, sticky hands – I blame the chocolate and the child!, and big smiles.

Cara x

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