St David's Day Reminiscence
|Image Credit: Jeremy Bolwell, CC License|
I was 10 when my parents took my brother, sister and me for a summer holiday at Tresaith. Here's a photo of its lovely sandy beach in the shelter of Cardigan Bay. In my childhood days it was a small hamlet with virtually no facilities that I can remember - but oh what a wonderful place for playing on the beach, swimming, rock climbing and exploring rock pools. We spent most days on the beach with a picnic lunch.
|Image Credit: Henry Widdicombe CC Licence|
I suppose it was my last holiday as a child-child before puberty changed me into an adolescent-child. I was still at the stage where I enjoyed getting really messy and didn't care what I looked like. This was just as well, dressed as I was in a dreadful seersucker bathing costume. After swimming I delighted in wearing a pair of khaki boy's shorts held up by a boy's stretch belt with snake fastening. These had both once belonged to an uncle. This was fine by me - I was at the height of my 'tomboy' stage and didn't mind wearing exactly the same style of shorts as my younger brother.
That holiday was a great adventure. We had no family car then and travelled to Tresaith by several changes of train, bus and taxi. We stayed in a self-catering farm cottage with very basic amenities. The toilet was an outside privy, inhabited by a permanently resident frog (or was it a toad). We collected our milk each day from the farm - and yes it was directly from the cow and still warm. I learned how to milk a cow that holiday - a skill I have never since practised. We probably got eggs from the farm as well, but for other food we had to go to the village of Aberporth, 2 miles walk away via a beautiful cliff path. I remember being fascinated by the people in the shops all speaking Welsh.
The evenings were spent in family games, chess, draughts, card games like 'beggar my neighbour', 'cheat' and 'rummy' and of course reading. My father was a great reader and usually bought each of us a new book to take on holiday. Mine that year was Lorna Doone by R.D. Blackmore. This was the year I discovered P.G. Wodehouse as there was a complete set of his novels in the cottage. I devoured them, finding them so funny. Perhaps I was the right age for the humour, although I can't imagine recommending them to a 10 year old now. Revisiting one or two of those books as an adult I no longer enjoy them.
None of this has any connection with St David or St David's Day apart from the land of Wales. (St David is the patron saint of Wales). If you arrived here looking to find out more about St David you could go to St David's Day: the man, the myth and the legend. Or you could wonder about what St David meant by what he is said to have preached in his last sermon:
"Do the little things in life."I think that is what holidays are for aren't they?