July 21: Aberdovey

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Yesterday we met Sheila Harper on the train. She is an octogenarian who was a teacher and then head mistress. During WWII, she and her siblings and cousins were sent to Wales; she is returning to see it, having heard that nothing has changed. She regaled us with stories of her childhood, time teaching the RAF, and her post-retirement trips and amateur Shakespearean acting.

Time sped quickly and as we approached Machynlleth (Mac) where we were to disembark, the conductor announced that the first two cars of the train were going to separate from the rest for a different direction. People scrambled with their luggage in the narrow aisle to change to the appropriate cars. What a hoot!

At the station we asked for directions to Pas Panteidal, a small community near Aberdovey and were told how to get the bus stop. Later, the French couple we approached returned to drive us there. The woman had an English mother and had spent her summers as a child in this coastal area. Since she had never been to Pas Panteidal, she was curious to see it; her less-enthused husband drove us about eight miles out of his way to the turnoff, and then up to a progressively narrowing mountain road to our rental hilltop chalet From here the view is fantastic, but the closest grocery store is three miles over the mountains. As we asked our neighbors for directions, Jill and her mother-in-law June decided that we would not have time to hike to the store before it closed, and kindly drove us there.

Taking advantage of not having to backpack the groceries, Dennis and I grabbed can goods and basics (including two bottles of wine) enough to enable us to eat for several days. To thank our helpful neighbors, we will give them our linen when we leave. This was a great exchange for both of us.

Dawn awoke me at 4:44 A.M. Sunrise at 5:15. I propped my pillow to block the rays and fell back to sleep. After rising, I fed the birds and enjoyed the brisk mountain breeze and glorious morning. Our landlord left a note saying we could feed the hedgehog peanuts. Never having seen one, I hope to coax it out from the woods.

It took us 2.5 hours to walk to Aberdovey. Since it is Sunday and there are few buses and since we are also carrying groceries, we will take a taxi home, The fare is £8 ($12.21). For this reason, we will not be coming to town too often.

About The Author

Jane V. Blanchard

I am an award-winning author of the "Woman On Her Way" book series, writing about my travel adventures. For more information on the books, please visit janevblanchard.com. I started the "Woman On Her Way" travel blog in 2013 to share my experiences as I explored 13 countries with my husband, traveling by ship, foot, bike, bus, train, and plane. Dennis and I continue to make memories and hope you will enjoy following along.

Subscribe to My Journal