My Mad Holiday Diary

When we arrived at our holiday cottage in Southwold there was a pile of stuff waiting for us; not only the usual tea, coffee and biscuits (the little malted ones you seem to get everywhere nowadays) but also some brochures and – tucked away among them – a little notebook just perfect for writing a holiday journal.  So I shall regale you with some snippets from my journal of Southwold.



The sheer joy of walking through poppies, marshes, bracken, finding a place to pee where no man comes, then a path through the trees.  This cafe does Assam with soya milk and oo! extra hot water.  I remember a sitcom called ‘Constant Hot Water’ where Elsie Tanner from Coronation St ran a B&B.

This place reminds me of a Youth Hostel.  You used to make your own meals and do a chore before you left.  And now back across the river and up to the water tower.

It was a truly terrific journey yesterday; one of the best ever, without hassle, without misery and without incident.

A spot of rain now.

In the Lord Nelson

The sea is at the end of every street here – it’s all triangles and corners and coast.


Yoga on the beach.  Really warm.  Nobody about but a few people walking their dogs.  Everyone says hello.


Swam yesterday and today.  Very cold.  Lost cossie so bought two bikinis from Sue Ryder shop for a tenner.

This afternoon we went to Dunwich.  Had a look at the beach and the museum.  Left Peter in the pub while I went for a walk.  Found a forest.  Looked at Blythburgh church on the way back.


A very vivid dream in which I was furious with Mark for spending £6250 on a small spare part for a van owned by a community project.  Phoned and told him about it.  Seemed like we were together drinking tea in bed in the morning.

Later in the Lord Nelson got talking to some locals.  They are reading the tabloids and telling each other scandalous stories with great relish whilst assuring each other they don’t believe a word of it.  One guy has his own glass made from something industrial, I can’t remember what.

Brewery trip tomorrow plus fish and chips at the Harbour.

Alan Bennett this afternoon was very good.  One woman doing two pieces; ‘A Bed Among the Lentils’, whcih is the one with the clergyman’s wife (Mum wouldn’t have liked it) and ‘Lady of Letters’ which was the one Patricia Routledge did.  Oldest fig tree in England in Dunwich pub, apparently.

Want to hire a bike some time.

Hottest day EVER in England and consequently at Wimbledon.  Andy Murray is doing pretty well and Heather Watson played a blinder.


B-e-a-utiful morning.  Woke about five and saw the sun over the sea.  Wish I could have seen it rise but it’s too early to wake up then.


At the Ship Inn, Dunwich.

Gone and knackered myself getting here and worried about getting back.  Got lost.  Paths hard to cycle on – tree roots or dry sand – I kept getting stuck.  Paths not very well marked – about a dozen branching here and there and all saying helpfully ‘bridlepath’.

The garden of the Ship is lovely.  The fig tree is huge.


At the Vine pub, an unknown village in Cambs.  The pub advertised food and does not do it.  Barmaid disappears with a sponge to wipe the offending word off the blackboard.  Peter has a pint of Adnam’s Lighthouse which he says is not good.  Another couple have come seeking food.  They seem fairly good-humoured about it, but when I remark that the other pubs in the village do meals he says, ‘it’s too late now’, as though it’s all my fault.

Knackered from cycling yesterday.

Home in time for tea.

Kirk out

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