Monday, 1 April 2013

The contrasts of an Easter Weekend.

Well, I am now drawing breath after battling the snow last weekend, where we were snowed in. We also had abandoned vehicles blocking us. help arrived on the Sunday to dig us out.
We have also had a busy time this weekend; one in which our Wedding Anniversary fell. After 49 of them I am still in a state of wonderment that we are still forging ahead together at life's trials, tribulations and joys. Visits from daughters and grandsons sealed the day.

Daughter: 'Tell me Dad, How do you reach 49 years?'
Dad: (Tongue-in-cheek) 'Just keep saying "Yes"!

Actually it is more than that and a compliant partner would not be any fun. Team work is the answer, together with sharing  basic beliefs in things while - and this is important - keeping your own identity and interests.
We had a lovely meal at the Grosvenor Pulford Hotel at Pulford, between Wrexham and Chester. One of our favourite
celebratory places.  As it was a special treat, OH tucked into a pudding. Mine was decorated with a special message.

Sunday dawned cold but I was determined to wear my new dress and Antique Mist (cream) shoes with a small (for me) black stiletto heel. We arrived at church - St Mary's Cathedral, Wrexham, a little early to make sure that we got a good parking place. The car park was full as the Polish Mass hadn't finished. Round the block we went. Twice. Then parked in a side street. We had lunch booked in one of our favourite eateries so in the end we were glad as we got out quickly after a prolonged service which included two baptisms.
After a lazy afternoon, OH brought out my 'Easter Egg' - a box of Cadbury's Roses - which we proceeded to devour.He does like to help me out!
We had a ride out today to the wonderful Betws-y-Coed and stopped for a snack  lunch at the Waterloo Hotel.  
(A5). They have continued with their refurbishments and have a new reception area in what was a small lounge facing the door.. The old reception area is now a spacious reception lounge. Doors are now  automatic.
Heading back branched off at Pentrefoelas to over the Denbigh Moors. The landscape was like something out of Siberia with huge walls of snow bordering the roadside in places. The snow still lying on the hills, gave definition to the contours and shape of the mountains making them stand out starkly against the skyline. Here and there huge swathes of pines cast black shadows on the snow. At Bylchau , we headed towards Denbigh from where we took the road through Ruthin. Thankfully, the Nant-y-Garth Pass was open; the roads were dry, albeit quite dirty; everywhere many broken branches of trees and shrubs were hanging broken over hedges.
Taking the turning from Ruthin for Llangollen, we headed over the Llandegla Moors to the Horseshoe Pass and our favourite stopping off place there - the Ponderosa Cafe. When it was built, the slate building to the right was a very smart restaurant where we enjoyed special meals. Over the years it has changed and expanded into what today has become a complex.It is a Mecca for bikers as well as tourists in general. Today the car park had been cleared, the gift shop was doing a good trade in sledges for youngsters to trek up the hills across the road, and there were clear roadways from the car park to the cafe - thankfully.
Last week, the news had shown how the snow was up to the roof tiles so it was good to see them open for business.

Snow piled at the roadside on the Horseshoe Pass

We really do live in a wonderful part of the country. 

This week, it is onwards and upwards preparing for the Print launch of ORANGES : A Journey. This is my first fiction work which draws on real experiences and settings with a heavy dollop of travel in Estremadura,Portugal and Andalucia, Spain.