Hello there. E and I have just returned from a post A2 treat in 'sunny' Devon. We were only there for 4 days, and 4 rainy days at that, but we had a brilliant time. I do love spending time alone with E; she is such lovely company and very funny. It was also made extra special by the fact that if she gets her grades (and it's a big if!), she will be off to uni in September and life will never be the same again.
We stayed in Riverside Cottage Guesthouse, just outside Bideford on the North Devon coast and I can't recommend it highly enough. Donna and Simon were fantastic hosts, the place was spotless and the breakfasts amazing. I usually only have a breakfast smoothie at home, so took it easy with cereal, toast and fruit but E went for the full veggie English and can heartily recommend it. The gardens are beautifully kept and the chickens, ducklings, goats and miniature Mediterranean donkey (Toyster) were adorable.
Here are a few photos:
Views from our room:
The one overlooking the estuary:
The dining room:
Some of the animals:
The guesthouse was on the Tarka Trail, a series of footpaths and cycle routes in North Devon that follow the route taken by the fictional Tarka the otter in the book of the same name. It was lovely to walk and cycle along - relatively flat and no traffic other than the odd cyclist and dog walker. On our first evening, we used the trail to walk into Bideford for a potter round and supper by the quay.
Wednesday found us in nearby Barnstaple where we sheltered from the rain in the cinema (Independence Day 2!) and had an incredible Caribbean meal: vegetable rundown with rice and peas, callalloo, corn dumplings and Ital carrot juice. It was delicious and incredibly cheap. E and I tried to recreate the rundown for dinner yesterday - it wasn't bad but not up to Monty's standards! Sorry about the photos - we had tucked in before I remembered my camera!
E kept stopping to rescue caterpillars from the path:
We picnicked on the beach, which was where I remembered that I had forgotten to buy a parking ticket! Luckily when we got back we didn't have a fine.
On returning to the guesthouse, we caught our breath in the summer house. The guesthouse also doubles as a vintage tea room and the cakes were yummy. Games were played, E read her book and I cast on my second Owl sock.
Friday saw us donning damp wet suits and spending half a day learning to surf at Westward Ho!
We treated ourselves to some well earned chips and then went for a walk along the beach.
Finally, we shared a cream tea overlooking the sea before setting off for home.
Note we ate it the local way with cream first!
All in all, 2 had a fine time in beautiful Devon and I shall think of our holiday and that lovely summer house every time I wear my Owl socks!
Toodle Pip for now. x