When we awoke on Sunday, we sat around the breakfast table feeling rather exicited; you see, an adventure beckoned. The sun was shining in a bright blue sky and we felt the call of the sea in our souls. So we headed off to Hull.
Yes! To the home of The Deep! One of the most amazing aquariums I've been to this side of Barcelona (although I'm sure there are many marvellous ones in your corners of the world too).
The Deep is the world's only Submarium and is home to all manner of species including sharks and saw fish. There's a whole heap of interesting stuff to be learnt as you wind your way around this fabulous place, discovering tanks full of exotic specimens and lagoons teaming with brightly coloured fish.
And jelly fish.
I find these creatures strangely balletic as they unulate their way around their silent, underwater world. I'm fascinated by their delicacy and their form.
I was also rather taken with the building...
I love an interesting bit of architecture ~ my love affair with it began when I was travelling with my friend around Spain after we'd left University. I'll never forget the first time I clapped eyes on the Sagrada Familia in Barcelona and on the Guggenheim in Bilbao back in 1999!!
Anyway, I digress somewhat!!
All things considered, The Deep is a pretty cool place to go, and Small adored it, although she probably adored the small glittery pink plastic bracelet printed with dolphins from the gift shop more. It was only early afternoon by the time we'd finished our aquatic meanderings but it didn't take long to come up with a Plan that would lay to rest that Need that had been sitting in my belly for the last week or two.
We could drive out to the coast.
Just a short hop, skip and a jump (ok, a forty minute drive) and you're on the East Coast, namely in a little village called Hornsea.
Hornsea has a beautiful Mere, and a pretty old village complete with old stone church (whose graveyard was bulging with bright red tulips, daffodils and muscari). A short stroll up the road leads you to the seafront, where you are met with the tantilising scent of fish and chips, hot sugared donuts and sweet candyfloss fresh on the breeze. Seagulls whirled around above and the North Sea was in a particular feisty mood and sent large waves crashing onto the pebbly shore.
Despite the weather forcast predicting a chilly day, the sun beat down warmly so we bought an obligatory ice-cream and found a breaker to sit on and admire the view.
The sea front of Hornsea is adorned with all the usual little cafes and takeaways, plastic fronted amusements and tiny kiosks with piles of buckets, spades and glittering windmills spinning in the breeze stacked up outside. Away to the south lies a large caravan park which sprawls into the distance. Up to the north you can just about make out the coast of Bridlington, and the headland of Flamborough.
But despite it's faded glamours, I like it here. There's salt in the wind that blows onshore; you can taste it, and the waves (although brown) are large, and crash powerfully onto the sand, hissing back again with a thousand shiny pebbles tumbling after.
I sit on the shore and take big gulps of that lovely sea air while Small runs round making sand pies and sand angels. She has sand in her hair, between her toes and she is laughing. She loves the sea as much as I do.
I've longed for my fix of the sea for a while now. Sitting here is a gift, unplanned and unexpected. Making the most of a few quiet moments I start to do something that I find very relaxing...
It's a therapeutic business this pebble tower building. There's a certain edge to all the pebbles which balance perfectly if you can find it. It's compelling and very relaxing.
Before we left for home, we bought seaside fish and chips doused in vinegar and ate them overlooking the beach. They always taste better at the coast, don't they?
Thanks for coming to see me today, it's always lovely that you do!
See you soon,