Sometimes you can plan everything, other times you just have to wing it. Saturday mornings are now taken up by dragon boating for me, after an hour or so on the water and then the time it takes to put the boat away, stretch and have a cup of tea and a natter with the team that’s the whole morning gone and I wont get home until lunch time, by which time half the day is gone.
This Saturday was one of those days, but having had a stressful week and with my boy away doing his Duke of Edinburgh Silver award trek and husband just back from working away for the week, staying at home cleaning the house was not an appealing option. So, on the spur of the moment we grabbed a bottle of water, couple of bananas and some crisps and jumped in the car and drove – just like we used to twenty years ago.
Okay, twenty years ago we wouldn’t have thought to bring any snacks or quickly book a table for dinner, but I guess that’s what happens when you grow up… a little.
After a mere two hours in the car we arrived in Lulworth Cove, on the Jurassic coast in Dorset. Late afternoon and it is still beautifully warm with a clear blue sky, the car park is busy, but I suspect not nearly as busy as it would have been earlier in the day. The area is so beautiful it attracts a huge number of visitors, each wanting to take in the beauty of the place and the atmosphere.
From the car park you have to walk down the hill, past the tourist traps and expensive ice creams, past some pretty wee cottages, which would be a dream to live in, if only you didn’t know you’d have so many tourists wandering past you window all the time….
It is all worth it when you reach the sea, the cove is idyllic and the light is just perfect.
The beach is mainly the rounded pebbles which don’t hurt your feet, but make it hard to walk as they move under foot, they also make a gentle whooshing noise as the water that has moved in pulls back out, taking some of the stones along with it. Time spent just sitting and listening to the noise of the water is time well spent…
The bet was then on, who could find the first fossil, failure would mean paying for dinner. To my mind this was highly unfair, hubby is a keen metal detectorist with a love of all such things, whereas I am probably the most unobservant person you could meet. It also felt, with all the rounded, almost uniform pebbles, it was a lost cause. Sure enough, as we reached to far side of the cove another couple came round and the woman asked whether we had found any fossils. She was convinced they would be just tripping over them and was disappointed to have not seen a thing – I wasn’t holding out for much more luck.
Once we reached the larger rocks I took the chance to sit and just take in the surroundings, on the water the boats of varying sizes, people swimming, kayaking and snorkelling. On the beach the teenage girls taking selfies, parents with small children paddling, a group of young lads listening to music and clambering down the steep hill, one slipping, laughing at himself and carrying on to the beach.
Then, as I looked down I noticed some more unusual rocks, oh yeah, I found the first fossil. Then, once I had seen one I kept finding more and then before long we had an entire selection of them.
Slowly, as the light faded the people started to drift away the place actually becomes more beautiful.
As we wandered back along the beach we found another interesting stone, I suspect this one was man made…..
To finish off a perfect afternoon we head to the local pub, an hour earlier than our reservation, but they managed to seat us.
Of course when eating by the seaside you have to have fish and, to be fair, they did a lovely fish and chips with the best onion rings I’ve had in a long time.
A lovely meal, with someone I truly enjoy spending time with proved to be the perfect end to the day.
This is definitely somewhere we will be returning to explore further, we took the low road this time, but there is still the high road left to climb…….