Tuesday, 21 December 2010
Let it snow, let it snow etc, etc................
And so on and so on................... my goodness what disruption the recent snowfall across the UK has caused, and as much down here as anywhere I think?? Salcombe has certainly seen it's fair share of the snow plus hailstorms, thunder and lightening storms and some of the coldest winds I've felt in a very long time!! But worse still (and in common with a lot of the country) what a dreadful effect it's having on our business (as well as the rest of the town)! We regularly do between 70 - 90 covers every Sunday lunchtime - what did we do this last Sunday?? 8! Yes 8 - EIGHT!!! Yikes!!! Visitors of course have been unable / unwilling to take the risk of getting down here and then worry about being able to get home. Exeter / Halden way has been blocked and the outlying villages around us have been completely cut off. 15 minute trips into Kingsbridge have spread into an hour and cars being abandoned became less isolated incidents. I drove a little in the snow and ice - but called it quits at an early stage......... no point denting a confidence just yet!!
Local people have been slipping and sliding their way around and who can blame them for not wanting to break a leg getting down into town. However, I'm really pleased to tell all of you potential visitors to Salcombe this Christmas and New Year that things down here are slowly but surely getting back to normal - snow is still on the fields but roads (particularly the major roads) are fine and even the minor roads are far easier to get through on than they were, so please don't be to worried about travel when you get down here
So then moving on - Salcombe had it's first ever Christmas Street Party on Saturday and what an amazing day it was........ the picture above from http://www.explosures.co.uk/ is my SOH dressed up and ready to man our Mulled Wine / Roast Chestnuts and Hot Chocolate stand with James our chef, and they were kept very busy thank you! The picture of Whitestrand (opposite the Victoria) gives you a flavour of what had to be done to get the area cleared of snow and ice to able to lay the ice-rink and erect various marquee's / stalls etc.
The Victoria held a children craft 'shed' upstairs and my goodness, we were very pleasantly surprised how many children visited....... that was a great success!! The children made Mint Creams and craft'y stuff!
Father Christmas made an appearance in the square by sledge and stayed for several hours - and for me, it was the start of Christmas, particularly when I took little Franscesca's hand (main picture at the top - her Daddy is Father Daniel my friend) and took her up to him to say hello...... I had to gulp back a sob that threatened to escape :( The magic of Christmas that is children!!
But everyone played their part in the day and it all came together exceedingly well. It was especially fantastic to see so many local people, whole families out enjoying themselves and making for a great atmosphere! Hopefully it's the start of a bigger and better Christmas Party next year and maybe, just maybe also some sort of regular street market, which would be absolutely amazing for Salcombe, but there's a fair bit of negotiation and work to be done yet.......... so watch this space!
In common with many thousands of people, my own travel plans were disrupted and I wasn't able to go to Portsmouth on Sunday to see and have an early Christmas with my son and his wife, so SOH and I took ourselves off to the Harbour Hotel (formerly the Marine Hotel)
www.salcombe-harbour-hotel.co.uk for a rare Sunday lunch treat. We had a lovely large G & T, a very nice bottle of Rose and an even nicer 3 course lunch, (very tasty!!) followed by liquer chocs at home, a delicious nap and snuggles watching dreadful Christmas slush.......... but it was a great way to make me feel less miserable!! Even if at about 5.30 I remembered why I no longer drink in the day time!! Closely followed by a beautiful Carol Service at Holy Trinity Church that evening, and the spirit of Christmas slowly but surely came into our home on Sunday...........
We also had a really nice impromptu evening last week with our friends Donna & Micha from Catch, whose travel plans to Germany were also disrupted, where I cooked far more food than was needed but somehow all got ate! Don't you think that those times when it just happens are often so much better than the planned events??
What else?? Well thats about it really...........just hope that all our planned visitors are able to come down for the festive period. We have quite a few bookings for the Christmas Eve and NY Eve, but it's all in the lap of the Gods of the weather at the moment, so it's fingers crossed and a keen eye to the weather forecasts!!