Sunday 7th July 2019
I am super late with my July Blog because my husband Roy, our border terrier Abbey, and I have been to Wales for the past week. This was a completely spontaneous event in direct response to my husband lamenting that we had not made any holiday plans for this summer. My idea of 'going away for a holiday' is to anyplace outside the British Isles. But when I heard Roy say yet again he would like to go to Wales I knew I had to get in gear and make a booking (I am the 'booking person' when it comes to places to stay; Roy does the airplane/car bits). I found a self-catering cottage that accepts dogs, was out in the country, and was on the opposite coast from us in St. David's, a small village with a cathedral.
I must admit I was NOT looking forward to this trip. I was especially not looking forward to the drive, but a 5:00AM start and incredibly good luck on the motorways got us to our cottage by late afternoon. Even then I wasn't excited. Not until we went out the next morning and headed for our first beach. We were in Pembrokeshire, in southeast Wales. I wasn't prepared for the spectacular wide-open, unspoiled, uncrowded, clean beaches we visited. I wasn't prepared to be amazed--but I was!
By the second day I was actually beginning to feel relaxed. By the third day I just wanted to spend the rest of the week re-visiting the perfect beach we'd discovered—a wide stretch of spotless sand on a bay of calm water edged with huge rocks. Dogs were allowed off leashes, and after chasing each other or jumping in the water, they settled down to watch all the activities—small children playing with sand or exploring tidal pools with buckets and spades, paddle-boarders, kayakers, swimmers (although the water was pretty cold), snorkelers, fishermen, hikers, beach-combers, guys gathering winkles and cockles...all out enjoying the lovely sun and water. A small café at the parking lot served seafood, beer, and wine and where we enjoyed spirited conversation with other dog owners! Fields of sheep above us provided us with a lively chorus!
I brought my Kindle (currently reading Sapiens) and my camera, and alternated between beach walks, reading, indulging in a favorite hobby of mine—photography—and just people and dog watching. We spent three days in a row at the beach from mid-morning to late afternoon, only leaving long enough for lunch at a great little beach-side café with outdoor seating, water bowls for dogs, and Welsh mussels on the menu.
I never realized how much I needed a holiday until we were on the beaches. I didn't look at my messages, emails, Facebook, or even logon to the laptop I'd brought thinking I'd have time to work on my book. I had time to think, dream, imagine, and even empty my mind (I think this is called 'mindlessness'). It was a much-needed time out—thanks in no small part to my husband.