Always one to perpetuate a stereotype, in particular the one that living in Devon is like being in one jolly rollicking Enid Blyton book, the hounds and I used our only alone day over Christmas to brave the smugglers and dirty scoundrels and head to our nearest section of the South West Coast Path for a good old romp.
With lashings of ginger beer and a wicker picnic basket filled with devilled eggs.
And a rampant longing for adventure.
And a gilet*.
“It was such a lovely day too, and the sky and sea were so blue. They sat eating and drinking, gazing out to sea, watching the waves break into spray over the rocks beyond the old wreck.”
― Enid Blyton, Five Run Away Together
In reality I parked up and had to faff about with the phone-for-parking thing for about 20 minutes, stuck my hand straight through a poop bag into a big steaming pile within 30 seconds of getting out of the car (partially because all poop bags I own have been through the wash in my jeans pocket and weakened and partially because I was trying to wrestle Pete away from eating it), lost a bag o’ balls (not a euphemism), also lost all feeling in my frozen toes and forgot, surprisingly for someone who eats as much as I do, that an 8 mile hike along the coast path should definitely be prefaced by some food, any food, if you want to remain conscious for the full duration of the walk.
I don’t think Enid had to put up with this sh*t. And I KNOW that George, Julian and Timmy et al didn’t.
But the beach we started out at really was called Elberry Cove. So there’s that.
After the constant human contact of Christmas, it did feel like a bit of a treat to go off alone and let my legs and my creepy old mind wander for a while. I spent a bit of time strolling along behind some very cheery Blyton-worthy ladies, earwigging on their Christmas stories, until I’d been there a bit too long and it got a bit weird so I had to overtake.
They probably smelt me coming.
I do love a memorial bench and this one has clawed its way up my list of favourites. And it came with a stonking view.
Apparently Elberry Cove is on the Agatha Christie Literary Trail as one of her favourite places for both bathing and dastardly plot developments, it was the place of Sir Carmichael Clarke’s demise in the ABC Murders if you’re a fan. I had my wits about me so our only losses were the aforementioned balls. All of which were dropped off the cliff edge by this
complete cretin scamp.
We mooched all the way from Broadsands to Brixham, or Fish Town as you might know it.
I’m frequently blase about the beauty of where I live but seriously, LOOK AT IT.
Three hours, 10 knackered legs and one dead iPhone battery later and we staggered back into the car park, grabbed the best tasting cup of tea I’ve ever had (served by the grumpiest bugger I’ve had the misfortune to receive tea from) and spent 20 minutes faffing with the phone-for-parking thing to cancel my session.
Where we fell in front of the roaring fire with steaming mugs of hot chocolate and relived the adventures of the morning. Or maybe I made some muffins and a stew, ranted at the queue in Sainsbury’s and did no fewer than four loads of washing. You’ll never know.
My soul and my face needed some alone time so thank you Devon for being unfathomably beautiful and not full of pillocks.
How’s your soul doing? Want to come to the beach?
*gotcha again, no gilet. Just eyewatering mis-matched knitwear and a smile. Next Chanel ad anyone? Perhaps.