Category Archives: Wales

#SEWES2016 ~ Sept 14 – There be Wales!


Sept 14 – There be Wales!


Not a lot of pictures taken today. Despite the map saying the driving time would be a little less than four and a half hours, it took much longer to get to the Travelodge at Pencoed in South Wales than that. At least it felt that way. Lots of roadworks, reduced speed limits.

We arrived at the hotel shortly before 3:00 pm – just before check-in time. The desk clerk suggested we walk over to the Harvester Restaurant for a drink while we waited.

Since we were bursting in need of the loo, we took him up on the offer. Best of all, the toilets were just inside the restaurant doors so we could get relief before getting a drink.

We were meeting our friend, Anne, here at the restaurant for supper at 6:00 so we got a menu so we could look it over while we drank and take it back to the room. Make it easier to decide what we wanted for supper.

Checked in to the hotel. The room was upstairs (the first floor) but we’d climbed stairs every place else so far on our trip. Unfortunately, the room didn’t have electrical outlets near the bed so we hauled out the North American extension cord we brought from home and pressed it into service. Hubby’s CPAP machine isn’t much good without electricity.

We headed back over to the restaurant shortly before 6:00 as we wanted to be there when Anne arrived.

While we waited in the bar side of the restaurant for her arrival, another patron struck up a conversation with us. I found him very hard to understand so his companion had to translate a lot for us.

Sept 14
Anne and me

We brought bottles of real maple syrup in maple leaf shaped bottles with us to give as gifts to our UK friends and family, so once settled at the table, we gave Anne’s to her. Thrilled to receive a bottle of the sticky treat, she presented us with a Welsh Lovespoon in return.

All too soon, our wonderful evening ended. We waited with Anne until her taxi arrived, said our goodbyes again, and returned to our hotel room.


#SEWES2016 ~ The adventure begins

#SEWES2016 ~ Scotland, England, Wales, England, and Scotland

September 9, 2016

Like my hashtag for the trip? #SEWES2016? We’re SEW-ing – and looking forward to our time in these countries.

Things right from the beginning have been weird. I renewed our membership in Historic Scotland back in early May to ensure I remained a ‘renewal’ member. There are more perks to that status. Well, the cards didn’t come. I contacted them in June as they sent out replacements cards. They didn’t come. I get the magazines quarterly so our mailing address is correct. Emailed them again, this time we decided to have them mailed to our first destination. They arrived there but only a few days before us.

Originally, the flight was supposed to be non-stop from Glasgow to Toronto but a stop over in Montreal was added after we booked.

As is the norm when we travel anywhere, I don’t pack until the day we’re leaving. Why do it sooner? It only gives you the opportunity to unpack, repack and do it all over again many times. And if your forget to pack something, there are stores in other countries. We have to buy distilled/demineralized water for hubby’s CPAP machine. Since water is heavy, we don’t want to cart a bottle of it in our checked bags anyway. Not to mention, if the plastic bottle broke in the suitcase, everything would be a soggy mess.

We booked a park and stay at the Quality Inn and Suites on Ambler Drive in Mississauga so we could leave the car there and take advantage of their shuttle bus to get us to and from the airport.

Here we are ready to embark on our adventure. Do we look happy? Excited? Nervous? Any or all of the above?

front seat selfie

It’s rare when we’re on vacation that we get photos of both of us together. Usually, it’s just one or the other. But, with my BlackBerry Z10 having front and rear cameras (so does my unlocked Samsung Galaxy Prime), it makes it easy to get pictures of us both together.

hotel lobby selfie

I don’t wear headbands a lot but decided to give them a go for this trip. I tie my hair in a ponytail for taking photos but there are always a few wisps of the mop that are too short to stay in (or even reach the elastic). And I can be guaranteed that the wind will blow these bits of hair in front of the camera lens. So it will be ponytail plus headband and we’ll see how that works. If it doesn’t then the tried and true method is to have hubby hold the blowing stragglers in place.

departure gate selfie

After flying Club Class with Air Transat in 2014 when we went to Paris, we decided never again to fly economy.  I mean if you’re going to be stuck in that cigar tube for 7+ hours, you might as well be comfortable. Wider seats, fewer passengers to have to share the loo with, blanket, neck pillow, slippers, and earbuds – this year all packaged up in a reusable cloth bag. And the other part of the comfort kit (designed to look like blue jeans) had a toothbrush and toothpaste, earplugs, lotion and lip balm, sleep mask and socks.

And did I mention champagne? Plus you get real glasses, real cutlery and real plates!

I did take a ‘champagne on the plane’ selfie but by then the excitement had got the better of me and I couldn’t hold the phone steady. It certainly wouldn’t have had anything to do with the three glasses of red wine I drank before boarding… 😉

Go figure, google maps can’t calculate the driving directions from Toronto to Glasgow…

Come back again tomorrow for the next installment of our #SEWES2016 adventure.