Tuesday, October 16, 2007


Last weekend, following some deft planning, a long and winding road took us west, into mid-Wales.

As a treat to Emma, following her recent Ph.D. triumph, it was determined that we should take a relaxing break at The Ffynnon Townhouse, in Dolgellau, Gwynedd. Set in a renovated and refurbished former rectory, the exterior of the building matched the earthen greys of the town.

Stepping into the property, it was immediately clear that this was to be a far from grey residence, as others have testified.

Soon after arriving, we scrubbed up prior to taking our table reservation at the nearby Penmaenuchaf Hotel. There, we began with drinks and nibbles in the lounge.

Despite being three decades younger than all other diners, we managed to play the evening like this was the norm for us (my picture-taking remaining discreet). Our ruse was that I was a professional footballer (probably more Macclesfield than Manchester), and that Emma was my WAG.

It was good that the tricky journey was behind us. We relaxed into the evening.

Shane: You look good.
Emma: Thank you. So do you.
Shane: Thanks… My tie-sweater combo aren’t too lurid?
Emma: You’re doing ok – relax –save your energy.
Shane: Mm?

I realised that I had failed to properly wash the driving directions to Dolgellau from my hand - what an embarrassing school-boy error.

Not that that mattered, I was to have other things to distract me.

It’s true. We got back to Ffynnon to find a body in the bath!

Only kidding. The body is Emma’s, she brought it with her - that is, the body is she – relaxing - she’s not weird or owt (I would like to dedicate that last word to my parents; ‘owt’ is a colloquialism for ‘anything’).

Anyway, back to Wales… At this stage of the evening, with Emma looking utterly delectable, myself feeling roused, and it getting late, I could not help but to glance over the forbidden.

God bless WiFi.

Following a good night’s sleep, and stuff, Saturday saw us walk into Dolgellau town centre, where we took lunch.

Afterwards, we drove down the coast road to Aberdyfi, where Emma got to see the site of Alex’ summer crabbing success.
We walked on the beach and got arty.

Emma: What are you doing?
Shane: I’m taking a photo of the seafront properties, from an upside down yoga-type crab position.
Emma: (pause) Why not just turn your phone upside down?
Shane: (gasping) Shhhh – I’m innovating.

In late afternoon, we took a mountainous route back to Dolgellau.
I’d brought good reading, I ran a bath.

But alas, my reading would have to wait.

The best laid plans…

On Saturday evening, we arrived a little late for an excellent dinner at the Dylanwad restaurant.

The weekend bore no more photographs - my batteries were out of...


LB said...

a dirty weekend in every sense.

(i mean the writing on your hand, obv)

Zinnia Cyclamen said...

So when you go on these outings, how does the dialogue about the photography go? Are you a covert photographer? Or does Emma say e.g. 'don't forget to take a picture of that for your blog'? (Sounds like a great trip BTW. Am slightly envious.)

Shane said...

LB - 'dirty weekend'? 'dirty weekend'??? I'll have you know that it was an ART weekend.
Z - I openly enthuse about taking pictures of taps and baths and shiny cutlery and olde worlde café premises. Emma supports such whimsy, and is amused by my appreciation of her... of her Venus Anadyomene.

OldHorsetailSnake said...

Nice little travelogue, accompanied by a bit from Victoria's Secret-Secret. Did you happen to go through the town with the long name, you know, the one with 26 vowels and 47 consonants?

(I may have shorted it; it could be 32 vowels and 60 consonants. All I know is there are a lot of them, and some people can even pronounce them.)

Thanks for WAG. I will try to use it in my normal conversation. Same for 'owt.

Shane said...

Hoss - no, we didn't go through Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllll-
antysiliogogogoch, but without realising it we passed by there back in June - quite an achievement, really.

Beth said...

I am enjoying your photo story posts very much. Sounds like a fab weekend & the beach art is lovely.

(Looks like a very clean weekend to me!)

PI said...

Shane I love your dinner colour combo - pink and soft green - sooo attractive - and very nice hands. I wish I could remember the name of the hotel outside Dolgellau with a lake in the grounds where you just felt Lancelot. It was the sixties and so bitterly cold we stayed up getting sloshed every night rather than face the icy sheets. I think the mountain we climbed was Y Garn.

Shane said...

Beth - Really most pleasing to note your dropping by. I quite like the beach art too. It's begun to shape the drip-drip transformation of our garden.
Pi - Oh to have witnesed that 60s gregariousness - sounds rather appealing. And you make me blush.