Saturday, 3 April 2010

The Honeymoon - Part Three

Part three and the final blog of what has been the most amazing part of my life so far........ The honeymoon!! As the wedding preparations gathered momentum there were a few times that we both said we should have kept it much smaller, but it was entirely my fault as there were always people I felt we should /needed to ask - and so like topsy the wedding grew and grew. Now as it happens everything turned out beautifully, but come Sunday afternoon we were both really tired - Saturday had been great and we had a ball, but as always in this business, you can never (well we don't) just walk away.

So on the Sunday morning after the wedding, we were both up at the crack of dawn - there was the bookwork to do, food orders (on the computer) to ensure were done in the few days we were away, banking to get ready, wages to input, staff rotas to check and finally verify, bit of cleaning and tidying in the flat, Rosie to welcome home from her 'dog sitter' etc etc etc........ you get the picture I'm sure! So at 4 o'clock when we finally drove away from the Victoria Inn it was certainly with a huge sigh of relief and expectation of a great few days in Normandy. We drove to Portsmouth where we were catching the ferry on the Monday with my son Paul and his wife Caroline - needless to say we dissected the wedding a dozen times over, with much laughing and joking and generally the journey went very quickly.

The overnight Premier Inn was clean tidy and ok for 1 nights sleep, but the pub nearby (part of a chain) was pretty ghastly! Anyhow, Monday morning saw us up Early again and off to catch the 8.00a.m ferry to Cherbourg................ hence the picture of Tim asleep on the journey. Me - well, I was far too excited to sleep. The car drive to our destination was fun - we made at least a half dozen wrong turns and the journey took almost twice as long as it should have - but we treated it exactly like the adventure it was!

All of the journey and fun was just leading up to our honeymoon destination - and crikey, what a destination: the Manoir de la Riviere, at Saint Louet-sur-Seulles, and run by two fabulous British people - Maureen & Ian.
I've been trying to think how we came upon the Manoir - I think it was by pure chance when browsing google and trip advisor and I am so Glad we chose this very special place. From the very moment we drove up their magnificent drive and them coming out to welcome us - right to the time they waved us off 4 days later, absolutely everything at the Manoir was perfect! A pool and sauna was available for use (which we did) and huge woods which we never got the chance to explore. A beautiful 4 poster bedroom with views across the woods, and you could walk through Ians rustic farmhouse type kitchen to the elegant restaurant area where an eclectic mix of furniture and objects met you. But without doubt - the warmth of welcome from Maureen and the amazing cooking of Ian are what made our honeymoon complete! Oh, yes - plus they lent us their sat nav to help us get around the countryside!!!

Seriously, the food we had was totally amazing - right from the delicious and plentiful breakfasts - through to the most amazing dinners.......... a fantastic wine selection, a roaring grated fire and candlelight..... romance personified!! But the fourth night we were struggling to eat all that was put in front of us - but we struggled valiantly!

Alongside of all of this romance, we went and did the 'tourist' things of visiting the beaches where the great battles took place in the 2nd world war - Omaha, Gold etc. It didn't have the 'feel' to me that I expected - perhaps because the weather was reasonable and their were scores of schoolchildren, but Pegasus bridge did have that 'feel'...... some quite remarkable story boards from British forces personnel made it all feel so very real! The British war cemetery was very moving and to see so many young men's names and ages on headstones was breath takingly sad. Of course in Normandy and like any tourist site - The Vatican, the Eiffel Tower, Barcelona etc, all great places I've been too - it's us tourists and the tourist tat that tarnishes it for me........

We saw lots of French countryside, went to Bayeaux, Caen, Hon Fleur, Deauville, met some lovely people - a great young American boy called Hunter who knew more about the 2nd World War than any person alive I've ever spoken to!! Ate loads of French Chocolate.......... also bought loads!!!
Took lots of pictures, walked a fair bit and just thoroughly enjoyed our honeymoon.
Now, though, it's a fortnight behind us, and real life is catching up with us.... we're in full swing for the Easter holidays here at the Victoria and yesterday we did almost 200 covers!!! Today, the streets of Salcombe are full of children with buckets and 'crabbing' nets, lots of damp dogs and the economy would appear to have done well - judging by the amount of carrier bags of clothes!!
So - onwards and upwards - the next blog post will be telling you all about our next adventure - the taking on of yet another business............... the White Hart Hotel in Modbury!!!!
Happy Easter................ X


ahmed said...
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ahmed said...

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