A few days on Anglesey, now back to reality

Just as in June circumstances beyond my control decided to wreck my recently planned 10-day holiday away so instead of going to Norfolk as I normally do at this time of year, a change of destination and departure day saw me heading off on Thursday morning last week for another few days on Anglesey. I stopped off en route to visit my blogging friend Eileen and just as I was leaving there it started to rain – and that set the tone for the next couple of days. It was still raining when I finally reached the camp site, it was windy too, and with no chance of putting the tent up I spent the rest of that day and all the following day living in the van. It did turn out really nice later on Friday afternoon though so I took advantage of it and took the dogs down on the beach, and with not many people around it was vastly different to when I’d been there in June.
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Day 2 – Benllech beach
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I woke early on Saturday morning and found that the wind had gone, there wasn’t even the whisper of a breeze, so I took advantage of it and got the tent up while the going was good – I was really only using it to store most of my stuff as I’d already decided to continue sleeping in the van. The day was really grey and cloudy but after spending most of the previous two days cooped up in the van I was still determined to go out somewhere, and after having the van cleaned as part of a charity car wash at the local fire station I went over to Llanberis on the mainland to explore round an old castle which I’d found out about in June. The only part of it still standing was the tower and it was possible to climb the steps inside it but being extremely steep and narrow they are definitely not for anyone with claustrophobia or vertigo.
Also while in Llanberis I looked round a lovely old church and the Snowdon Mountain Railway station – and with the high prices charged for a ride to the top of the mountain I certainly won’t bother going up there. On the way back from Llanberis I called to see my cousin Dave in Llanrug then with the weather improving I stopped off at Port Dinorwic, where I was lucky enough to see a heron ‘posing’ on the end of a seaweed-covered breakwater.
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Day 3 – Steps in Dolbadarn Castle tower, Llanberis
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Port Dinorwic marina
Sunday started off cloudy but came nicer as the morning went on and by lunch time it was lovely so I took myself off to explore a part of Parys mountain I hadn’t previously seen. From there I went to Llanbadrig church, which I’d missed while on my quest to find Porth Wen brick works in June and where I learned some interesting history, and my final stop – via a cheeseburger from Pete’s Burger Bar at Penrhos – was Soldier’s Point and the marina at Holyhead.
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Day 4 – View from the slopes of Parys Mountain
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The Sanctuary in Llanbadrig church
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Holyhead marina
Monday was just like the previous day, starting off cloudy but coming nicer as the morning went on, and this time I went to explore a corner of the island I’ve never really been to – a stretch of the coast towards the south side of the island alongside part of the Menai Strait. From there I went to the outskirts of Newborough to find the Giant’s Stepping Stones then into Newborough itself and through the forest to Llanddwyn Island – by then the weather was getting better and better and the views across to Snowdonia and the Llyn peninsula were beautifully clear. There was a BBC film crew making a documentary about life on the island at the beginning of the last century and though I couldn’t go near the old cottages I was able to wander round the rest of the island and I got some beautiful photos.
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Day 5 – Along the Menai Strait
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A strange ‘sculpture’ in a car park
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Phoebe, an adorable little dog I met along the way
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Newborough beach, looking across to Snowdonia
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A beach on Lladdwyn Island
Tuesday was coming home day and the morning was partly sunny/partly cloudy and also very windy – taking the tent down wasn’t too much of a hassle but I had to fight with the groundsheet before I finally bundled it up and got it into the van. I left the site at 10.45 am, much earlier than I would normally leave but with it being so windy there was no point staying any longer, however over on the mainland the weather got better and it turned into a gloriously sunny day so I stopped off for an hour or so in Conwy. As a long-time follower of the Quest tv programme Salvage Hunters, just for curiosity I went to look in Drew Pritchard’s shop, and though there were a couple of things I liked most of the items were grossly overpriced and horrible – it beats me why anyone would want some of the things that were on display.
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Day 6 – Conwy Castle
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Conwy quayside
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Lancaster Square and the Prince Llewelyn statue
On the way from Conwy I called to see Eileen again but unfortunately missed her this time as she was out somewhere, so I continued homeward and arrived back at 3.30pm – and since then I’ve really known that the holiday was over. Less than a couple of hours after getting home I had a call from the PA at my evening job, she had mistakenly thought I was back at work that day so wondered why I hadn’t turned up. At my morning job yesterday no-one had done anything in my absence so I had lots to catch up on, then later on I went out to the animal hospital to collect Aphra’s ashes for my friend Janet, though she’s asked me to keep them until she feels more able to deal with things.
We also have workmen in the empty house next door, yesterday they were rewiring the whole place and the drilling and banging were horrendous – Michael is currently working 12-hour night shifts but couldn’t get any proper rest because of the noise, and it was so loud at one point that we couldn’t hear each other speaking even though we were only three feet away from each other. After the previous few days peace and quiet on a relatively empty camp site that sort of noise is the last thing I want to hear – fortunately they seem to have been fairly quiet today but any more noise like yesterday will have me wishing I could go straight back to Anglesey!
*Larger versions of these photos and more will eventually be part of a full update on my camping blog, including some interesting history and facts about a few places I’ve seen while away – now all I have to do is get round to writing everything up!

8 thoughts on “A few days on Anglesey, now back to reality

  1. Anglesey on the whole is a beautiful place but on a sunny day Llanddwyn Island is truly stunning – I took 48 photos there within just a couple of hours. The odd weather this time made for some strange but lovely cloud formations and when it did come nice it was glorious so in spite of the very wet and windy start it wasn’t all bad πŸ™‚


  2. I met little Phoebe in the car park with the strange sculptures, she was 13, smaller than my two and absolutely adorable. Going down the lane to the car park I’d almost run over a chicken which jumped out of the hedge then a bit later on I came across some very feisty pigs, so it was definitely a day for meeting animals πŸ™‚


  3. It was lovely to see you on Thursday morning and those few spots of rain as you were leaving our house were the start of some heavy rain and stormy weather. I felt sorry for you and worried at the same time and it couldn’t have been pleasant being stuck in your van for the whole of Friday. So relieved the weather improved and you certainly did get out and about over the remaining three days of your holiday and took some lovely photos.

    I’m so sorry we missed you on your journey home. We were expecting you to call later in the day and we hadn’t planned on being out for long. If we hadn’t stayed for a bite to eat we’d have been back in time. As it’s turned out the weather has been glorious this week and my purchases cold have waited. Seems like you chose the wrong week for your holiday, such a shame. We’ll both have to improve on our timings.

    Your return home wasn’t pleasant with that dreadful noise to contend with, good to hear it’s quieter now. Having to return to work isn’t great at the best of times but seems you’ve landed in the deep end with that too 😦


  4. I’ve got the delights of another evening job to come today as other than emptying the kitchen bin they never do anything while I’m away so I’ve always got to play catch-up – sometimes I wonder why I bother going away but luckily this one isn’t a big place and it’s a fairly easy job anyway so it shouldn’t take long to get it sorted.

    I should actually have been away from the 8th but yet again delayed it due to issues with the garden (the front one this time, long story) – maybe if I’d gone when I’d intended I would have had better weather but then I would have been packing up again when the storm hit. It wasn’t all bad though and I did manage to make the most of it once the rain stopped. I don’t mind living in the van if I’ve packed it to do that but with the intention being to live in the tent I had more stuff so things were a bit cramped, however once I did get the tent up and could put most of my stuff in it the van was fine.

    It’s been glorious here since I got home though but I’ve been too busy and tired to enjoy it properly. I was sorry to have missed you the other day – I would normally have called later on but I left the site much earlier than I usually do so for once I was ahead of myself. At least I got home before the rush hour traffic started so I was happy with that πŸ™‚


  5. I’m sure the Tourist Board must have their own photographers with much better cameras than mine but it’s a nice thought. I reckon I’d be a good ambassador for Anglesey as I’ve been there so many times it’s like a second home πŸ™‚ I’d really love a good digital SLR but (a) I couldn’t justify the expense and (b) I don’t want to be carrying different lenses around when I’ve also got two dogs with me – the less I have with me the easier it is so my fairly decent bridge camera suits just fine.

    In spite of the wet and windy start it was still a good break and I managed to pack quite a lot into the few days so I can’t complain too much – and 286 photos in just five days can’t be bad! πŸ™‚


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