The weather was so beautiful this morning that Jim and I decided to play hooky and take a trip to the coast, just the two of us. Since living in Yorkshire (for the last 10 years) we've hardly visited the sea at all. It's not that far, at an hour and a half away, but we just rarely get around to going.
I spent a lot of my childhood by the sea. My grandparents home was just along the road from Dungeness, and was the place we visited almost every Christmas, Easter and Summer holiday of my childhood. And my happiest time growing up was when we lived in Mudeford and I spent my time visiting Hengistbury Head and playing on the beach. But it's not until I go back to the beach now as an adult that I remember how it makes me feel as though I'm back where I should be.
A few weeks ago I read Jen's blog post about Flamborough and decided that the next time we had the chance we would head up there for a visit. I had originally intended to take the girls, but we haven't been able to combine a free day with good weather, so we hadn't managed it.
Today was just too lovely to spend in the studio, plus the weather report for this weekend once again isn't looking great, so Jim and I decided to take advantage of the sunshine and go. I have to admit that although I would have loved the girls to have been with us, it really was lovely going on our own and being able to slow down completely.
When we got to Flamborough we parked at South Landings and walked down to the beach from there. The beach is covered in the most incredibly smooth white stones that are full of perfectly round holes and we spent a couple of hours paddling in the rock pools and collecting the beautiful stones. Then we walked the path and sculpture trail that ambles along the cliff top, spotting gannets and fulmars (and hoping to spot a puffin).
We had to get back to Leeds in time to get the girls, so we didn't get to stay at the beach for as long as we would have liked, but on the way home we still managed to squeeze in a late lunch of fish & chips while sitting on the promanade at Bridlington. And after that stopped briefly at Sledemere House for a coffee.
The whole day was stunning, not least of all because of the incredibly picturesque drive through the Yorkshire countryside to get to Flamborough and back again. But I have to say that it would seem that Jim and I have turned in to old folks, because we're now slumped on the sofa absolutely exhausted from our day out, hoping that the girls will put themselves to bed.