Monday, 31 October 2011

It's grim up north?

Having the luxury of TWO weeks for October half-term where 'other' schools have just one, I decided to take some time off and give myself a bit of a break. To the sea, I decided. I always end up in Brighton when I decide to see the sea, but this time I thought 'no' dammit, I will go oop north to windswept Yorkshire, to Whitby. Now this is a right old faff for a non-driver like me. Getting the train(s) to Whitby is something of a pain in the posterior. It takes hours and several 'skin of your teeth' changes and is not a lot of fun, but on a crisp and clear autumn day the benefits outweigh the, erm, whatever the opposite of benefits are, once you get there.

I arrived intact but dusty and stiff from rail travel. Checked in to Discovery Accommodation and my little Cockleshell Cabin, which I liked so much that I started to read up on squatter's rights while I was there. Excited by a pink sky I dashed off out with my camera despite my hunger and fatigue, and took lots of crap, shaky photographs which I later deleted - and the point was? I later scoffed my first fish 'n' chips washed down with a bottle of lager before plodding about rather wearily watching the crashing waves before crashing out in my wonderful bedroom back at the ranch.

Anyway, all in all my few days in Whitby were a delight. Everybody who had the misfortune to serve me was really, REALLY pleasant, polite and friendly in that particular northern way. I don't think I saw ANY chavs at all - gasp. And the place itself is rather magical, though perhaps I may not have said that had it been pissing it down. It WAS freezing and very windy, but that made the sea and the sky all the more spectacular and photogenic. My hands nearly froze off and I was rather glad I grabbed my hat at the last minute before leaving home - all sense of vanity goes out the window in the cold; I looked a fright. Whitby Abbey in a howling gale and sub-zero temperatures is a sight to behold. I was a bit creeped out to be honest as there was hardly a (living) soul about - I didn't stay up there long on my own and soon descended in search of nourishment. Spent a day at Robin Hood's Bay too - also beautiful, though on this occasion crawling with schoolkids doing some survey on sea defences. Is there no escape? From schoolkids I mean, not sea defences.

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