Thursday, December 23, 2010

Palm Trees in the Snow

Usually we travel to Tenby through North Wales. M62 to round about Manchester, then into the beautiful mountain scenery - - Bala - - Machynlleth - - Aberystwyth - - Cardigan - - and then the drive through rolling countryside to Tenby.

Today we couldn't do that - North Wales has a liberal coating of snow and the chances of getting along those stunning mountain roads were hovering around nil.

So it was down the M1 and then the A42, M42, M5, then across the Severn Bridge into Wales and past Newport, Cardiff, Port Talbot and Swansea along the South Wales Coast.

It isn't the most interesting of routes. There was snow all the way and luckily the traffic was very light and the roads were clear. But I far prefer our lovely mountain roads.

When we arrived in Tenby, it was like everything familiar had suddenly changed. The view from Park Hotel is still beautiful - but covered in snow!

Tenby just isn't used to snow - it is extremely rare here. The hotel is up on North Cliff and the road up to it is very snowy and slippy, though we got the car up with no problem. The owner of the hotel asked the council if they could come and grit it. "Ahhhh well", they said, "Pembrokeshire only has two gritting lorries. We don't usually need them."

The hotel still has its lovely summer smell which I think is a mixture of furniture polish and very clean, fresh air. The climate here is usually mild and there are palm trees everywhere.

The hotel is beautifully decorated for Christmas with Christmas trees, holly wreaths and fairy lights everywhere - it really does look wonderfully warm and welcoming, and dinner tonight was lovely.

But - - all this food! Usually in between the huge dinner and the huge breakfast, I have a walk of three or four miles in the evening and then a swim of half a mile or so in the hotel's outdoor pool before breakfast.

The pool is frozen and there's snow all over the sun-loungers. No swallows swooping over the sea: no bats flying amongst the trees on the cliff. No long summer evenings to wander along the beaches.

It's Tenby, Jim, though not as we know it.

Still wonderful though, and we plan to make the most of our time here. I hope to show you some photos soon.


Blogger Yorkshire Pudding said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

12:37 am  
Blogger Yorkshire Pudding said...

Glad to hear you arrived safely but Santa may be rather confused about which chimney he should squeeze down. Leeds or Tenby? Tenby or Leeds?
Surely the sea isn't frozen. Get in there lass!

12:38 am  
Blogger Jan Blawat said...

Many of us are like palm trees in the snow this year. We started our lives in sunnier days. Now the difficult times have changed our environment, but here we still are, standing tall and hoping for the sun to return.

Snuggle in and have a restful holiday.

5:03 pm  
Blogger rhymeswithplague said...

I didn't know Wales had palm trees! Are you at the "other end" of the Gulf Stream?

8:26 pm  
Blogger Daphne said...

YP - - I'm thinking seriously about getting in the sea - - watch this space!
Jan - - lovely comment, thank you!
Bob - yes, you're right, we are indeed at the other end of the Gulf Stream. Palm trees aren't native of course but grow very well here and indeed survive as far north as Leeds! Tenby's climate is usually really mild - until last winter there'd been no snow here for twenty years!

9:18 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you retrace your steps on your way home, do call in for a cuppa; you'll be passing within a mile of here.

11:13 pm  

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