A few weeks ago we decided to go to my homelands and have lunch in Llanberis. It was such a beautiful day, the sun was out, the sky was blue and we had lakes and mountains to look at, and to round the evening off we had fish, chips and mushy peas which were delicious.
Llyn Padarn is a glacial formed lake and the largest natural lake in Cymru, 105 meters above sea level and surrounded by the slate mountains, so it is quite spectacular. It is however quite cold in the water as both the dogs found out. Mazikeen was first in after seeing something in the water that she thought she could fish out and fell straight into it. When her little head bobbed up out of the water she looked a little shocked. I had to help her out as it was a little too high for her to get out, but she shook herself and carried on as if nothing happened. We were laughing at her doing it when both of them decided to go down one of the boat jetties which stops about 2 feet into the water and there is a drop. Harper was the first to look down at the edge whilst she was paddling about, then decided she could keep waking and went head first in. She was under the water for about 5 seconds and I thought I would have to jump in to get her out and then her head popped up and I pulled her out as she still had her harness on. Mazikeen, completely unperturbed by falling in and also seeing Harper fall in kept walking further out and then she vanished under the surface. I stepped forward ready to wake in and her little head popped up and she was swimming further out then realised and started going to the right to get back to the shore. Second dunking and she was not put off, and in and out the water for most of the day, but she was a little more careful from that point onwards.
M and I decided to go out for the day since the weather was going to be good. Originally we were going to go to Hebden Bridge, but after seeing the forecast of rain, we drove south-west and over the border into Wales. We first went to Betws-y-coed and had a short walk there before driving through Snowdonia National Park through the mountains and then on to Bala Lake. There is a cafe on the lake where we had coffee and bara brith, and I chatted to an old guy called Dave, who was doing the rounds chatting to everyone there, he was nice, although a little potty and latched on to us after he asked if we were local, and I told him that my family come from Rhuthun. I let the dogs go for a paddle in the lake which is always a big thing for Mazikeen as she heads for ay body of water to swim in.
After that, we headed for the Great Orme where St Tudno’s church is. Saint Tudno is said to have been one of the seven sons of King Seithenyn, whose legendary kingdom Cantref y Gwaelod in Cardigan Bay was submerged by tidal activity. According to the theory, Tudno studied at St. Dunawd’s college in the monastery of Bangor Iscoed, in order to make recompense for the drunken incompetence of his father, which had led to the loss of the kingdom under the waves.
Seeking a place to live out the religious life, Tudno went to the great ancient limestone outcrop of the Great Orme (Cyngreawdr), jutting from the Creuddyn Peninsula, to bring the message of Christianity to its people. He lived initially as a hermit in a small coastal cave with difficult access known as Ogof Llech, which provided protection from the elements, and a source of fresh water from a spring well Fynnon Llech. From this base, he constructed a church. Nothing remains of this 6th-century church building, although the present 12th-century church, dedicated to St Tudno, stands on the same site, and has a continuous history.
It was a lovely day out covering over 250 miles (I love to drive about), nice vistas, food and people.
I have been looking at booking a holiday cottage for M and me to go on, taking the dogs of course with us. However, I am just not sure where to go!
So far I have been looking at Devon, Cornwall and the Cotswold. I have been to Devon and Cornwall many times when I was a kid on family holidays, and I used to love going on the Lynton and Lynmouth Funicular Railway, and the long walk up and down the cliffs. M has never been to that part of the UK, so I thought it may be nice for him to experience it.
Part of me thinks we should go to the Highlands of Scotland or the Brecons in South Wales as they are places I have not been to. I have been all over North Wales, but never the South, and I have only ever been skiing in Scotland, so being up a mountain in winter with the sole purpose of skiing I never got to see any other part of the country. Devon and Cornwall call to me as it will be a lot warmer, but then again with the British weather, one can never tell what it will be like.
I was also considering going back to Rome at the end of September, beginning of October as we both love the place, and would move there in a heartbeat if we had the chance. But with any foreign break, we would have to leave the dogs in the kennels which is about £160 for the week, which is money that we could save by staying in the UK and taking the girls with us, and it saves them being stressed too, so a bit of a win-win if we stay here.