Southwold is like Aldeburgh’s older sister; bigger and with its own charms, a sandy beach and a lighthouse, but still with the same old fashioned feeling of Aldeburgh. A shirt drive up the coast, it is a perfect day trip, and perfect it was.
We packed a picnic and parked near the pier. The walk to our favourite picnic spot is alas, all uphill…but is compensated for with the most wonderful sea views, rows of beach huts in a rainbow of colours And knowing the walk back will be all downhill.
We picnic on the green outside a lovely pub. Adams brewery is based in Southwokd and Aspalls cider is another local drink. While we were picnicking, two things happened. Firstly,the lovely Apryl (with whom I was lucky enough to work with for many years and is now my WI companion) joined us along with her equally lovely family. They holiday in Southwold each year and we often find our holiday in Aldeburgh overlaps.
The second and slightly less welcome thing which happened was a shower. On the sunny walk along the seafront the clouds had started to gather, and now they started to rain on us. We packed up the picnic and hurried for shelter and it seemed to ease off.
Carl took Jessica down to the water so she could ‘paggle’ in the sea. A sandcastle was started…and then the rain came down. Summer in southwold is usually very busy, but perhaps everyone else had paid more attention to the weather forecast, because it was very quiet. The benefit was that we could shelter in the porches of the beach huts while we waited for the rain to pass.
Apryl painted pebbles from the beach (I have taken to carrying my paints with me wherever I go) while we all chatted and watched the rain. I went in search of tea, miscounted and had to go back to get one more. Sitting on the stores of a beach but in the pouring rain sipping Earl Grey….well it was actually really delightful. I find hot weather bring out the grumpiness in me, whilst this kind if weather seems to challenge you to be cheerful, and i happily rise to that challenge. There is something so English about drinking tea in the rain at the seaside.
After a while, some of our party went back to the cottage while the rest of us walked to the pier. The pier isn’t particularly long but it has the most amazing views, and is rather good for toddler legs. We had £1 worth of 2p coins each to play in the amusement arcade which kept us entertained for quite a while. When we had finished we went back out into the pier to discover that the rain had passed and it was sunny again.
We walked down to the end of the pier had a cup of tea halfway back and sat soaking up the wonderful views of Southwold.
Another happy day.