Nearly two weeks have pasted since we’ve arrived in Wales, and it feels like we have finally settled in. No more waking up in the morning and thinking we’d dreamt the whole visit. Since the last time I’ve posted, we’ve done quite a bit of sightseeing and exploring along the outskirts of Penarth and Cardiff.
We visited Brecon, which is a small town just north of Penarth, tucked between reservoirs and rolling hills. The views were just beautiful, plenty of sheep and sunshine to see outside of the town. On our way home, we stopped at a small canal, where the locks are maintained by a local family, who lives just beside the canal in a cottage. After we saw the locks, we stopped in the mountains outside of the outskirt villages to stop and have a look around. Sheep and wild horses ran freely along the hillside, and it was a lovely sight to see.
We’ve also been down the Cardiff Bay, to see two warships that were in the bay for the NATO Conference.
The lines were nearly two hours long to go aboard, so we decided the check out more of the pier, and try to avoid some of the crowds. Not a long walk from Penarth, we crossed a barrage (foot and bike path bridge that opens for incoming boats) to get across the bay. We passed the Dr. Who Experience, which is closed for updates until October (dang it!), and saw the restaurants, pubs, and bakeries lining the pier. We tried our first Welsh cakes, which are like a thinner, lighter cinnamon shortcake and once you take the first bite, it’s hard to stop! These pics are from Jackie’s camera.
Biking is a relatively foreign idea for Jackie, who is usually on her rollerblades, so I wasn’t sure how much we would be traveling on them. But, it’s turned out to be a very biking friendly area, and a great way to explore the area on our own. We wandered down the coastline, past Penarth and toward the next major town, Sully. We didn’t quite know what direction we were headed until we were there, but no matter! Just before Sully is a tiny, tiny town called Swanbridge (after the farm there) that is located right on the coast. We stopped for a quick lunch at a local restaurant and then decided to take our chances and cross to the small island just a few hundred feet away. There were several warning signs (see below) as the tide comes in and out very quickly and strongly, so it’s not uncommon to be stranded on the island, or swept away to sea with the strong current. We waited until we knew the tide was on the way out, and saw a Grandfather and his grandson on the other side (if it’s safe enough for a child, it’s good enough for us!). Needless to say, we didn’t die.
In sports news, Jackie had her first practice (scrimmage) with a the local hockey team and had a blast. Maybe not up to Norwich standards, but she seems to be enjoying the people and being back on the ice. We caught the local men’s team, the Cardiff Devils game on Sunday- what a rowdy bunch! More fights than I’ve seen in a while, but towards the end turning into a close game. The crowd was incredibly supportive of their team, and we were pretty impressed (considering we’d only met one hockey fan since arriving)! I’ve chosen to play with the Bristol Ladies Rugby Club, which is across the bay in England. I’ve had two weeks of practice, and hope to be cleared to play this Sunday against the Saracens.
That’s all we’ve been up to for the most part! Comment below if you’d like to hear about any particular experience, or just have something great to say. Until next week!