Dartmouth With the Worms, 17 to 20 April 2009

It seemed like a lovely idea for Janie, her sisters and the husbands/significant other to gather for a long weekend somewhere nice. We settled on The Dart Marina in Dartmouth. Very nice.

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We gathered on the Friday as the afternoon went on. I think Janie and I got there first, obviously, as we had by far the furthest to travel. We all agreed/decided that the pub adjoining (part of, really) the hotel would be our best bet that first night. It was old-fashioned fish and chips type food, done very well.

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On the Saturday, Phillie, Tony, Hils and Chris had planned a pootle around town while Janie and I went off to meet our friends Nigel and Viv (who then lived in Totnes) for lunch – more pub grub.

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This time we took it easy a bit, though, as we knew we had a big meal planned for the evening in the hotel’s posh restaurant:

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If it looks as though we spent most of the weekend eating and drinking…well you’re not entirely wrong. But that was about to change.

The Sunday plan was for Phillie and Tony to do a bit of gentle shopping while Chris, Hils, me and Janie did a proper walk. Chris and I planned the walk and off we set up the hill. Hils (no aptronym here) started protesting vigorously that we must be going the wrong way as we were walking far too much up hill. Now despite my spatial and directional challenges, I am quite good at plotting routes on maps. Moreover, Chris works for Ordnance Survey and is a specialist map guy.

In short, I think we were going in precisely the right direction, while Hils was barking up the wrong tree.

Still, once we explained the plan to her, which included descending to a lovely sounding village with a pub, she calmed down and cheered up.

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By the time we got to the pub, Hils was a convert to this walking thing and has undertaken many walking holidays since. Must be to do with the pubs…I mean the exercise.

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In the above photo, I’m sporting a West Indies ground staff tee-shirt from Nigel and Viv’s recent sortie to the Caribbean (was it Antigua or Barbados, I forget?) with Charlie and Dot. When I sported the tee-short again in front of Charlie later that summer, it had the desired effect (intense and voluble envy).

That evening we ate in the third of the Dart Marina’s restaurants – the bistro -style one, which we decided was possibly the nicest of the three for our purposes, not least because the weather smiled on us enough to enable us to eat outside under the patio heaters. There was some debate about meal timing and whether or not Chris and I could choose the wines we wanted to pay for rather than the house wine that Hils insists is always adequate. The photographic evidence (below) suggests that, for once, Hils didn’t get her way:

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There are other photographs from that trip – click here for the Flickr set, but in truth they are for completists/connoisseurs – the ones that tell the tale are included in this posting.

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