Trip Start Jul 17, 2009
8Trip End Aug 02, 2009
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Where I stayed
Ye Old Bucks Head Inn
Our drive from Wales to Shrewsbury was fairly easy - though we had to carefully watch for the road signs. We certainly laughed at each others' attempts to pronounce the various Welsh village names listed on the road signs we passed! "Ll's," "dd's," and a few extra "y's" made most words quite challenging. And though Donna had spent some time studying the Welsh language, reading lengthy (and frequently quite similar) placenames as we drove past, was its own challenge!
The drive down "Horseshoe Pass" into the vale of Llangollen was quite hairy! About a thousand foot drop, a narrow two-lane road, and no guard-rail...oh, yes, and sheep freely wandering across the road...well! You can imagine...!! We pulled over two or three times to enjoy the views, or was it to catch our breath?! At one spot, we noticed that we were looking down into a field where a horse jumping competition was taking place! We would like to have stayed and watched for a bit, but had apparently missed the entry road, and didn't want to turn about in the heavy market-day traffic headed into Llangollen! Approaching Shropshire, we admired lovely pastoral views of the Cambrian Mountains. Though considerably smaller than the Snowdonia range, they are still very beautiful. (Rather like trying to compare the Rocky Mountains and the Great Smoky Mountains in the U.S. - they each have their own great beauty.) In any case, Tom did another great job of driving on the left - even getting into the correct lane at some really very large round-a-bouts. Those with many placenames listed on signs at five different exit roads were fairly confusing - but we just drove 'round an extra time to re-read for the correct highway!
Finally, on a July evening in 2008, I was able to get together again with my long "absent" relatives! (Or, was I the one who'd been absent?!) :>) We had a joyous visit, exchanging lots of stories, and bringing each other up-to-date a bit. So, you will see many faces in these photos. We spent a week visiting three of my four cousins (Aunt Molly's boys): John, Tony, and Christopher... and their wives and children. (Terry was -sadly - absent. We had not been able to reach him.) After a really good supper at the Bucks Head, we all gathered in the beer garden of the Inn to toast each other and take some long-awaited family photos.
On Sunday, we went to Shrewsbury's Catholic Cathedral: "St. Mary Help of Christians and St Peter of Alcontara" - a beautiful little cathedral up along the town walls. That was where Donna's mum and dad were married in 1945 - pictures are shown. That afternoon, we met up with "the boys" (and their gals) for a picnic in the country! 'Twas a rainy day, but we had great fun none-the-less and Chris, Pauline and Olive had put together a perfect picnic meal!
Here's a link to the webcams of Shrewsbury: