Thursday, 2 February 2012

A weekend by the sea...

We like to go away somewhere around the time of our wedding anniversary...which is also Paul's birthday. Alice has to come too...or it wouldn't be a celebration, would it?! Last January we were in beautiful West Wittering, Sussex...with it's miles of sandy beach. This year was a bit more pebbly...but equally lovely. We chose Aldeburgh on the Suffolk coast. I've been a few times before as my Mum is from that county and many holidays were spent near here when I was a child. We rented a tiny 1-bedroomed cottage almost on the beach so that we could just get up and get out there in the morning. But first...a spooky little video of part of our journey there!
video
If you live in the UK, or even know it quite well, you'll know the nightmare that is the M25! If not, then I should tell you that it's a notorious motorway that runs in a ring around the whole of London. We have been stuck for 3 hours on this road...going absolutely nowhere...and most people who've driven on it have a horror story of some kind - so you can see why this was such a bizarre experience! It was a bit like being in one of those movies where everyone else is dead & the main characters only slowly realise that something's wrong....!
So, a good start.

Aldeburgh beach is almost completely shingle, which didn't go down terribly well with Alice (hard on the paws!) She managed ok though...

This is her & Paul early on Saturday morning...ooh it was chilly! A good excuse for lots of stops for hot tea & toasted crumpets! Award winning fish & chips went down very well later on too!
Aldeburgh is very famous for being the home of the late composer Benjamin Britten and his partner, the singer Peter Pears. On the beach stands a (to me) gorgeous sculptural tribute to Britten by the renowned artist Maggie Hambling. I'm surprised that this artwork is so controversial...it's often vandalised & covered in graffiti and has aroused strong passions in many of the locals...

this is the view looking towards the sea....

and the other way...We thought it was beautiful!
Loved our stay. I really feel drawn to this part of Britain - perhaps it's in my genes?!
On the way home we took a detour to another place I remember well, Orford...Paul had never been...

Bleak day, but a wonderful East Anglian church...

Famous restaurant...all fish, freshly caught on the two boats they own...( we were there in the morning, so didn't eat!)

and we took a walk down to the working quay, where Paul bought his favourite freshly smoked kippers (& one for my Dad, who loves them too) from Pinney's Smokehouse

before coming back and taking a stroll in the grounds of what is left of Orford Castle. The village was completely deserted - like the M25, it felt like it was ours for the day! One of the joys of travelling out of season...
Thank you so much for your sweet thoughts and comments after my last post. My voice came back the next day, but the cough remains...it's taking ages to disappear! Still, I feel much better and ready to face the new month...which is set to get better & better for me. Next week, I'm off to spend the rest of February in the summery heat of Australia when I visit my beloved Esther and her children! Paul & Alice will be staying here in the cold...how I will miss them! But I'm SO excited too!! It's impossible to imagine on this minus temperature night that in a few days I will be warmer than I can dream of!
I'll share it all with you.
xo

15 comments:

  1. got a shiver down my back reading this! Love Aldeburgh.
    I'm sorry we didn't get to meet up this time. In all honesty I wouldn't have been happy having a jolly time, even though he's home (and doing really well!) I have been a bit of a misery worrying about my dad.

    I'm so glad you had a lovely time, it is a gorgeous part of the world but I am ever so slightly totally biased!

    Happy bd to Paul,and congrats to you both.

    Glad you are feeling better

    xx

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  2. What a beautiful part of your country I have never seen. I'm wishing you much joy on your upcoming trip!
    xx
    julie

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  3. I know the M25 and that is amazing! Where was everybody?
    Like you, I LOVE that sculpture! What is wrong with people these days?
    Happy that you are better now!
    Love,
    Kay

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  4. I love the sea. And have learned to love rocky beaches. So glad everyone had a lovely celebration--and so nice you and Paul mark the event with time just for each other. Happy packing! xo

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  5. Dear Rachel,
    I have sent you an award! Check out my post for Feb. 2nd, Groundhog Day!

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  6. "It was a bit like being in one of those movies where everyone else is dead & the main characters only slowly realise that something's wrong....!" made me snicker. :) So funny.

    I love the photo of the ruin of the castle.

    And I'm glad you're feeling better. I had the flu all last week and am finally starting to feel better now. It does wear one out!

    Enjoy your trip! ♥

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  7. I love the area around Aldeburgh and often visit it. I have always been drawn to it too! And Pinney's smoked salmon is deeelicious too!!!!
    Loved your pics. Wish we could find the M25 like that! :)
    Enjoy Australia!

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  8. Greetings from Southern California! This is my first visit to your wonderful blog and I came over from Kay's blog, who has given us both an award. I'm so glad she included you or look what I would have missed. I've seen Aldeburg before, thought not in person, on Barbara's blog (Ramblings from an English Garden)....I love that seashell sculpture! Enjoy your stay in warm, sunny Australia. I'll be back for frequent visits now that I've found you.

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  9. Hi Rachel, Greetings from Canada and congratulations on your award from Kay! I so enjoyed reading about your trip, and looking at your pics - especially the seashell sculpture, which is lovely - how sad that it's often vandalized - people are crazy. Enjoy your trip to Australia!!

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  10. I think that sculpture is beautiful. I don't understand why people deface things - Florence is covered in grafitti...defies belief.

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  11. Dearest Rachel....

    How wonderful to celebrate Paul's birthday and your anniversary in such a delightful tradition....how fun!!!! It all sounds so relaxing and peaceful. I'm sorry your cough lingers; they have an awful way of hanging on and being quite annoying....hopefully, sunshine and warmer weather in Australia will remove any last remnants of it all....oh what fun you'll have with Esther....I know you will!!! Lovely post Rachel; thank you, as always, for taking us along with you...
    xo
    Joann

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  12. Oh Rachel, what a lovely place to spend your anniversary get-away! I just love the pebbly beach! Thanks for sharing it with us. It's always such a pleasure going along with you on your outings! I am so excited for you and your upcoming trip to visit Esther!! I imagine that you are "over-the-moon". It seems like just the other day when Esther was with you in London, and soon you will be reunited again! Lovely to think of it! BTW, I had an "English" fish n' chips lunch this week at an English Pub in downtown Barrie. It was our first time there. It was lovely. It reminded me of the fish n' chips we shared together. There were peas too (except not mushy). I know you don't like those. Ahh, such fond memories! Love you, sweetie! xoxo

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  13. Happy Anniversary, Rachel! It looks like you and Paul had a lovely anniversary/birthday. I hope you've recovered from your cough and I KNOW you must be so excited to be going to Australia to see your sweeties. Have a wonderful trip! xoxo

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  14. That seems like such an idyllic place. I want to go to that fish restaurant.

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  15. Oh and I love the castle. We have a Mount Orford in Quebec.

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