Monday, July 17, 2006

trip to bristol

a trip to bristol

over the weekend i visited bristol and a few places around
basically went to brams' place who is there, with wife sheetal, since 5-6 months
also, another friend from college, vani and her husband, vivek

friday 1830 ipswich station
my train to london was on time and i was all set for my first trip in the uk
with a bar of cadburys to keep me company, case i got hungry
i was to change trains in london, and for that i needed to use the tube
reached liverpool st and took the tube to paddington station
unfortunately there were some delays in the circle line and i missed my train
after getting in touch with brams as what to do next, it was decided to take the next train, an hour later, without buying another ticket
reached bristol finally at 2330 hours, after an adventure filled first london train experience

the hosts were awesome from the first minute
sheetal had made some awesome paav bhaaji which i ate as we did a lot of talking
was a great feeling, think it was the most talking i've done since i got here
we spoke of india and uk and friends and colleagues and what next and what not
by the time we decided to call it a day, it was 0130 hours

friday 0840 brams' house
the day broke when brams opened the curtains in the hall
the plan was that vani and vivek were going to rent a car and come here at 0930 or so
so, i quickly got ready and had breakfast
there were some 'technical' delays which meant we were ready ahead of time
meanwhile sheetal had cooked up some paalak pulaav for lunch
we started at about 1100 and headed for 'weston-super-mare'
we reached there, and didn't like it too much since it looked muddy
so, we started driving toward to 'combe martin beach'
on the way, we pulled over at a view point kind of place
alongside the road, there was a cycle and horses track which lead into the forest
we took that path, looking for a nice spot to camp for lunch
after contemplating on a few nice places, we decided on a cool spot in the shade of a big tree
most of us, atleast the guys, were hungry by then, so we quickly started unpacking the food
along with sheetal's pulaav, vani had made pasta for lunch
both were really nice and we had a nice leisurely lunch in the jungles
we then stay put taking some snaps of the depths of the trees and of some monkeys on them
on our way back to the cars, we took a slightly different route much to the disappointment of sheetal, who was getting pricked with all the thorns, as she was wearing shorts
we reached the car and drove to 'combe martin beach'
this beach looked less muddy, and more inviting
the landscape of the mountain alongside was brilliant
there was this one lonely tree, beaten by the winds, that took my fancy
we walked slowly toward the beach, each digesting the view at their own pace
i took my shoes off, to feel the sand, and it was nice and soft and cool
the water was chill and i waded in a little
sheetal had read about another beach close by that was apparently the 'best'
so, instead of getting wet and dirty here, we decided to move on
as we drove toward 'ilfracombe beach', we came across a 'view point'
this place was really brilliant, a small patch of grass, a parking spot for few cars and an awesome view
the sea and the sky together created a serene view that covered all the eye could see
it took me many minutes over staggered observations to realize the hugeness of the place
i never cease to be amazed by the great man's creations
the couples then had a quick 90 second football match, after which we decided to chill on the grass for a while
i was reminded of our frisbee stops in our trips around bangalore
beside this view point was the 'ilfracombe beach'
the birds eye view of the beach was sufficient and so, we now moved toward the sheetal-certified-best-beach 'saunton sands'
saunton sands was in fact a really good beach, awesome view, superb sand, flat shore, nice peaceful waters
almost immediately, both the couples decided they were getting into the waters
i choose to stay out since i hadn't any change clothes
i stood by the beach and watched the sea, and the little men and women and children play with the waters
the beach was long and wide, quite easily the wide-est i've ever seen
i'd reckon it was like 600-700 meters wide and way too long for me to measure
the waters kept rising, slowly and steadily
it pushed me back about 5-6 times, 50m at a time
one guy nearby was building castles in the sand, not one, but many
he'd make one, and then watch it wash away, and go walk back, build one more and watch it wash away
i had seen three of such castles this guy built wash away and i'm sure there were more
after about 2 hours of having fun in the waters, we decided to get back homeward
one the way, we stopped at a town and had pizza, garlic bread and potato veggies for dinner
reached home, did some more chatting and catching up, and crashed at 0030 or so

sunday 0845 brams' house
again, the day broke with the brams and curtains event
again, we planned to leave around 0930 or so
again, sheetal and vani made lunch for all of us
again, there were delays and we eventually left at 1100
we needed to get back to bristol early, so that i catch my train back, so we picked a closer place
'stonehenge' - the famous historic place of the british
it was only about 75 minutes drive, but thanks to my navigating skills, we got lost
and by the time we got back on track, we had lost the best part of an hour
we reached 'stonehenge' at about 1330
its just a few rocks, very old ones, on the planes, surrounded by grass all over
nothing great, but it looked nice, in the given setting
there is a lot of history to it which i didn't listen to, brams heard the most of it
we spent about an hour or so at the place, looking at stones placed in the middle of nowhere some 3000 years ago
the heat got to most of us, and we felt it best to start moving outward
some of us purchased stuff at the gift shop, more for memory than anything else
we had the good-home-cooked-food at the parking lot as the heat had exaggerated the hunger
time had come to start back toward bristol
the drive on both days was really nice
mostly country side on both sides of the road
mainly green and brown, with cultivated and un-clutivated fields and a bunch of trees one in a while
we reached bristol at about five and we quickly took my bags and went to the train station
after bidding goodbyes to the bristol-ites, i got into my train toward ipswich

was an excellent first trip here in the uk
arcolades to brams sheetal vani and vivek for making it happen


At 2:13 AM, Blogger Ekta said...

so i see someone has started blogging and not even bothered to inform "friends"..nice to know!
Glad u had fun in bristol!....

At 6:49 AM, Blogger Arjun said...

Excellent stuff....
Can I get the recipe for the palak pulav??
By Vani, did you mean VaniVaniGupta?

At 2:17 AM, Blogger Anand said...

where r snaps?

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