Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Dusk - Wales at Sun-down

We enjoyed fabulous family holidays in Pembrokeshire when the children were small. I’ve mentioned before that we were fortunate to have the use of a static caravan on a private site near Saundersfoot, thanks to the generosity of family members. Every August we loaded up the car, secured luggage on the roof rack, and set off on the lengthy journey. It took most of the day. We aimed for a picnic lunch at Bala, a break at Aberaeron, then onward in time to catch the Co-op at Narberth for some groceries. If we missed it, there was the Spar shop in Saundersfoot where we could buy essentials, but first it would be a chippy tea either in the café or on the harbour. It was a bit quicker on the motorway, but it took us miles away and where’s the fun in that? There’s a ‘harem scarem’ road through the southern parts of Snowdonia with a sheer drop down one side and warnings of falling rock that we wouldn’t want to miss for the world. It would be dusk by the time we arrived, more often than not.  It was lovely to unpack and settle in, listen to the sounds of the sea and look forward to the days ahead. The children, excited as they were, couldn’t wait to sleep in the narrow beds in their tiny caravan bedroom.

Safe beaches, clear water to paddle in and lots of time to play. Folly Farm, the Dinosaur Park and all the castles we could find.  Every day was an adventure and it was good to re-visit favourite places, especially some literary interest.  Laugharne, on the River Taf estuary in Carmarthenshire is the home and resting place of Dylan Thomas. I could imagine him looking out from the windows of the Boat House, watching the night tide slowly fill the river and seeing beyond the castle to the flicker of faint lights in the houses of the town as the darkness came. Under Milk Wood. I can hear his voice. Well, Richard Burton then, but it’s Dylan’s rich vocabulary.

 After a busy, fun-filled day it was perfect to relax with an ‘after tea’ ice-cream on Saundersfoot harbour as the sun disappeared into the hills behind us. With the heat of the day gone and the air feeling fresh it was comfortable to wander around the seafront, or go on the beach and dip our toes at the water’s edge. We might walk along to the far end of the harbour where the local fishermen were casting their lines over the height of the sea wall hoping for a plentiful evening catch.

Quiet evenings, relaxing on the patio, watching the birds fly home, looking for the bats that live in the woods and planning the day ahead, then contented sleeping children.
Photos from my own collection.
I love the humour in Under Milk Wood.
Rev. Eli Jenkins  -  Sun-down
Every morning when I wake,
Dear Lord, a little prayer I make,
O please to keep Thy lovely eye
On all poor creatures born to die.
And every evening at sun-down
I ask a blessing on the town,
For whether we last the night or no
I’m sure is always touch and go.
We are not wholly bad or good
Who live our lives under Milk Wood,
And Thou, I know, wilt be the first
To see our best side, not our worst.
O let us see another day!
Bless us this holy night, I pray,
And to the sun we all will bow
And say goodbye – but just for now!
Dylan Thomas, from Under Milk Wood

Thanks for reading, Pam x


Steve Rowland said...

Always like a bit of Dylan Thomas :-)