This weekend saw a respite from the rain and storms that had lashed the country in the previous week. I took the opportunity to get out and about knowing that it wasnt likely to last. Since my daughter insisted upon coming with me I wasnt able to go too far or too remote. Instead of mountains, I choose the sea, although more precisely the Severn Estuary.
We went to a place called the Newport Wetlands, which has only been open as a site a few years and highlights the importance of the estuary and the habitats it provides for wildlife, especially birds. There is a visitors centre, a playground for children, hides to observe birds, marshes and ponds and reed beds beyond count. And also the estuary itself. Opportunities for walking through the wetlands and along the estuary are a welcome change from mountains and the day was gorgeous. Sunny but not hot, windy but not blowing a gale. My daughter and I had as good an afternoon in the sunshine as I can recall. We even managed to view up close a pair of Mute Swans with their recently hatched cygnets. As we viewed this elegant family unit, we were ourselves snapped by a local photographer taking pictures for a local magazine. Apparently we could feature in the July edition of “Voice”! If we make the cut, I’ll post a picture on here 🙂
Having strolled through the wetlands themselves and viewed the myriad of birds inhabitating the area, we continued towards the shoreline of the estuary itself. There is a lighthouse on the foreshore which apparently was built in 1893. Part of the landscape is also home to Uskmouth power station although when staring out to the estuary it doesnt intrude on the view.
There my daughter made me carry her, like she was still four, on my back and wander along the foreshore. The stiff sea breeze was welcome on such a sunny day and kept the temperature around the 20degrees C mark (perfect for me). The views around the shoreline are mixed with the estuary stretching out into the distance and behind with reminders of the industrial heritage of the area. Then, having played out our perfect afternoon it was time to go back to the park and a game of hide and seek.
We had spent the whole afternoon walking and talking and playing against a deep blue sky and a rippling breeze mixed in with the smells of the sea. It felt like so many of the days I spent in my youth, living as I did by the Severn Estuary. In fact, I went to school a few hundred yards away from the shore at Sudbrook. Playing football as a child, we used the pitch that sat next to the cliff edge. Sometimes when the ball went out of play we lost it to the hungry waves!
After finishing our game of hide and seek, we had an ice cream and went home to have pizza for tea.
Just a little something different but a super day.