My best friend Nic and I ventured to Padiham for a mini break together. We hadn’t seen each other since Bali in February. Our time together was short, we only had 3 days and 2 nights but we crammed so much into what time we had, that it felt special and meaningful. Every night we were going to sleep at 3am in the morning because we had so much to discuss and on the last night we gave each other a healing session, Nic gave me an Ayurvedic massage and I gave her a Reiki treatment. Both of us brought crystals, our altars, our oracle cards, essential oils and our current favourite witchy books.
Jon and I ultimately planned to go to Wales or Bristol for a few days as a belated Birthday mini break for me. However due to his work schedule he was asked to be in London this Sunday to photograph Kobe Bryant, not wanting to miss this opportunity he asked if I wanted to come along and we’d stay an extra day just to enjoy some of the sites of London. I agreed because it had been a while since we’d had a city break and it would be a nice change of scenery, considering most of our destinations have been in nature and I really fancied seeing some art!
We were up at 5:45am to be on the road by 6:30am. Arriving in London at 11:30am, Jon rushed off to the venue where the event was being held and I spent 3 hours walking around Oxford street and leisurely lounging in a cafe over hot chocolate and reading a short story collection. Jon met up with me at 3pm in the Lululemon store and we had a bit of fun with their photo booth! The rest of the day involved locating our hotel, having an evening stroll around China town and the river front watching street performers and nosing in late night open book shops.
As stated in a previous post, we’ve been in Cornwall for a few days. We ventured to Looe which is not that far away from Par Sands where we were staying. It’s one of those places we kept meaning to visit, perhaps as a pit-stop on the way back to Plymouth but never got around to it until now.
Looe is a pretty coastal town with cute gift shops, plentiful boats and even an arcade. The weather wasn’t the best but as long as it wasn’t torrential rain and we were wrapped up warm then all was fine. In fact I do enjoy the rain and don’t mind being outdoors in less picturesque circumstances because life isn’t always sunshine and pretty flowers. Sometimes its cloudy and a bit brisk, you know?
We didn’t stay too long in Looe because it wasn’t the right time of year to be there, I am sure in the summer months this place is thriving and there is more to do and see but then would we like to be there when swarms of tourists are crammed in every street corner? probably not. Sometimes the best time to visit a place is during the off season, the weather may not be perfect but it means you have the location mostly to yourself, prices are cheaper and you can really soak in the environment as oppose to battling for a parking space or queuing for a burger whilst seagulls rob you of your candy floss.
A couple of weeks back we ventured on a day trip to Salcombe and Start Point Lighthouse for the day. The weather here in the UK has been glorious and Jon had a very days free so we wanted to enjoy the sunshine! Salcombe is a lovely little coastal village in Devon, a tourist hot spot and a perfect place to have a stroll whilst tucking into traditional Devonian fudge. This sweet little village is home to some lovely quaint boutique shops, galleries and you can hire a paddle boat to sail to the opposite side of the estuary to relax on a small beach.
We only stopped here for an hour to have some lunch before heading out to Start Point Lighthouse.
At Start Point Lighthouse we took in the breath-taking views, we climbed rocks, laughed, enjoyed being in nature, soaked up the sun’s rays and did some yoga. What is not to love? On a warm day like this it is easy to enjoy this location but I am guessing this place is not such a lovely experience during the winter months, there is a constant, strong sea breeze and very little cover from the elements so I’d suggest to wrap up in your thermals. On a day like this however I didn’t need a light jacket and loved the warm breeze brushing my face and flowing through my hair. Start Point lighthouse was built in 1836 to protect shipping off Start Point in south Devon, England. Open to the public in summer months and it is a grade II listed building. I highly recommend visiting this place, it’s so pretty and peaceful and it is an excellent location to watch the sunset.
Jon & I decided at the last minute to go away for a few days to Cornwall just to relax and clear our minds from the daily grind. We both realized we had been super busy we had forgotten to just be in the moment. Jon is travelling here, there and everywhere with work and I am writing articles, organzing my workshop, studying and arranging numerous projects. Things needed to come to a mini hault, so we did just that. This is kind of like a mini break inbetween the big breaks (Nepal in March and Bulgaria this September). I suggested we go somewhere botanical based because I am currently gathering research for my latest art project that has been buzzing around the back of my mind for ages. As this winter sets in I wish to work on a set of Botanical illustrations which will also be incorporated into an illustrated poetry book. But also this mini break allowed my body to be a little at peace because I recently fell down the stairs and bruised my Coccyx bone, it has been suggested I take it easy so very little or no Yoga (and Dance) for a short while…However as you will see in my photos this didn’t stop me from doing some Yoga poses and in all fairness it took only seconds to take a Yoga photograph so there is no harm in that, my Butt bone was achy a little later though!
Our mini break lasted 3 days and we ventured to The Lost Gardens of Heligan, the Eden Project, Truro and a Cicrus (Truro and the Circus are not shown in this post).
Soon after our couple of days in Cornwall we ventured to the South of Wales and spent four days in and around Swansea. We stayed with his delightful Aunt & Uncle who are also keen adventurers themselves, telling us stories of their motor bike adventure around Europe and their most recent adventure on a huge sail boat around the Atlantic Ocean on their own! Jon’s Aunt & Uncle have been to so many places around the world and it was just so inspiring hearing their tales. It was just so lovely to be out all day and know we could come back to an environment that was very cozy and welcoming.
Well I am back from a lovely mini break in Bristol with my close friend. I feel so much more refreshed & in tune with myself. For those few days we ventured around quirky boutiques, Art Galleries & Museums, bohemian cafes, played with my Tarot Cards, made loads of tea and brought our Sasquatches along with us for the fun of it.
Nic & I hadn’t seen each other properly for almost 2 years because now I am based in Plymouth, Devon and she lives & works all over the UK, as busy artists it is hard to find time to see each other. It seemed logical to meet half way in Bristol which is full of art & culture. Nic encourages me to be playful all the time, she really taps into my inner child even out in public. On Sunday evening we literally just chilled in our room over tea, had a catch up and ventured out for Pizza at a gorgeous Italian restaurant named Sergios. On Monday we visited the Bristol Museum & Art Gallery, had a peak inside some quirky boutiques and in the evening we were invited to a wonderful one-woman-performance at the Wardrobe Theatre by Joanne Tremarco who is a professional Fool alongside many other amazing talents. Tuesday involved going to a Mad Dog casting agency in the morning for Nic to sign up for and soon after we ventured into the city centre, exploring the market place, canals, a lovely bohemian cafe called cafe revival and viewed an exhibition at the Arnalfini Contemporary Arts Centre. Wednesday morning we marvelled at some of Bristol’s beautiful architecture and enjoyed a hot chocolate with a Bree & Vegetable toasty before boarding onto our coaches to travel back home.
It was a short but sweet adventure and I can not wait for the next one.
This is where we stayed, it’s cheap & cheerful: Home Stay Bristol
This is where our Sasquatches came from: SukiSuki
This is Bristol’s Museum & Art Gallery: The Bristol Museum
This is where we saw Joanne Tremarco’s Performance: The Wardrobe Theatre
This is the lovely Cafe we discovered: Cafe Revival
These are my Tarot Cards, you can buy them here: The Wild Unknown
This is the Contemporary Arts Centre: The Arnalfini
And if you like my Fox bag that Jon gave me for Christmas, you can get a similar one here: Vintage Fox Side Bag
Our Dinosaur, Swan and Alien Finger Puppets came from: The Puppet Company
Now I am looking forward to a holiday abroad with Jon for 2 weeks in March, where shall we go I wonder? Stay Tuned!
Snowdonia (North Wales)
This is definitely a place where mythological creatures could live. From the awe-inspiring mountains to the majestic lakes, this is a magical place and I can see why the Welsh are so proud of their land. Absolutely Breath-taking. Jon and I will visit again and perhaps stay a bit longer next time. We also plan to trek up Mount Snowdon!
That week of mini adventures up to North West England & North Wales was a fruitful one. We discovered so many beautiful places nature has to offer. Before we spent a few days in Snowdonia we did stay in Blackpool with my relatives & enjoyed some wondrous day trips to Ingelton falls, White Scar Caves, The Yorkshire Dales as well a visiting Blackpool Zoo & enjoyed an evening watching “The Last Waltz” at the Winter Gardens, (you can check out the blog post to these places here). Snowdonia was the last place on our list of places towards the end of the week, we stayed for 2 days and we stopped over at Conway/Conway Castle, Betws-y-Coed, Swallow Falls, Llanberis Pass, Beddgelert, Caernarfon/Castle, Portmeirion, Ffestiniog & Bala.
As a couple Jon & I enjoy making most of a holiday, you will never find us wasting a day lounging about the hotel or pool. We usually get up early and already have the day planned with a small list of places we’d like to visit within the area. To save on money we make packed lunches (because we all know that beautiful holiday hot spots tend to have tourist areas that are over priced.) We try to find places out of reach from tourists, preferring to seek out wild terrains & soak up the culture by visiting where the locals live.
Seriously if you fancy a mini retreat please do visit the rolling wilderness of North Wales, the locals are lovely, the landscape is out of this world & you’ll feel so refreshed from all the stillness & quiet.
This place is where I was born and brought up. Parts of Lancashire and Yorkshire have some of the most beautiful and wild terrains in England. Living away from home and even watching
‘Game of Thrones’ and listening to the Northern accent makes me proud to be Northern.
And even some of the buildings in Blackpool town centre are seeped in history and architecture of the Roaring Twenties (1920), the golden age of Jazz, flapper girls and when my Romany
ancestors settled here as street performers, Gypsy dancers and fortune tellers.