Saturday, 26 December 2009

Boxing Day swim

The sausage and sprout sandwiches were packed, the parsnip soup was safely in the flask, and we were ready to set off for Mothecombe for a festive swim. The sun was shining and it felt great to be out. There were hugs and kisses as we rendez-voused in the car park; we then headed down to Coastguards Beach. We'd been hoping it might be calm in the estuary, for a contemplative high tide swim, but no such luck. Large waves pushed us around all the time and then a big black cloud came along and rained all over us. Coming out we noticed some new graffiti on the wartime pillbox; at first I thought it was exhorting us to "Meditate" but closer inspection this turned out not to be the case. The only disappointment of the day? The sausage and sprout sandwiches. We won't be making those again.

Monday, 21 December 2009

Historic bathing

Despite the cold, I felt in strong need of immersion, so set off for Anstey's Cove in Torquay, where the water is usually flat calm and where, it is said, Agatha Christie used to swim. The afternoon sun glowed over the fairytale pinnacles at Long Quarry Point; this promontary is home to Devonian limestone which is around 400 million years old. I slipped off the rocks into the water and was immediately drawn out of the humdrum and into the seascape.

Saturday, 19 December 2009

Father Christmas is here

Every year Santa brings his sleigh to Ashburton, with generous sponsorship from the local Rotary Club. On Saturday mornings he brings Christmas cheer to the shoppers, and in the evenings he travels round the town broadcasting carols.

Pants come to Ashburton

The latest addition to Ashburton's retail offering is a lingerie shop, in an enviable position next to the public toilets and the bus stop. It comes hot on the heels of the tattoo parlour which opened a few months ago. Are we moving away from the antiques and chintz?

Sunday, 13 December 2009

Bountiful Bellever

Not much swimming to report recently due to lurgy. At the least the rain has now stopped and it feels properly like winter. We went to Bellever Forest, in the middle of Dartmoor, to gather greenery for festive festooning. It was cold up there but the sun, gleaming through the trees, was glorious.