Monday, 21 October 2013

We're all going on a seal hunt..

My week had been grey. Grey skies, grey roads and grey feelings.

So my parents suggested we ran away to the seaside. 

We all piled in to the car, bags, airbeds, duvets, dogs and everything and I buried my head in my duvet and slept away all the worries of the week.

I awoke to the tranquil sight of Robin Hoods Bay, basking in a dim glow of dark blue as the day dissolved into the night. The little stream at the bottom of our garden there was adding gentle background noise to the occasional seagull cry and the muffled, cheery voices that ooze from the warm, golden lights of the little pubs.

I had traveled in my wellies, these are the only footwear you need in Robin Hood's Bay, and almost straight away I put them to good use as we took the dogs for a long walk along the windy clifftops and listened to the sound of the wild sea hitting the cliffs.

We finally arrived home again and the moon was beaming its stunning light across the black waters of the sea like a pathway into the dark horizon, then we all went to Ye Dolphin for tea - my favourite pub there without a doubt. It serves traditional pub food but in lovely, large portions and always tastes amazing. The pub itself feels so homely and warm and safe from the cold, windy outdoor world, I can't imagine a trip to Robin Hood's Bay without a meal in the Dolphin.

The next morning we took advantage of the lovely weather and set off on an expedition (that word always makes me think of Winnie the Pooh).


 The sunlight reflecting off the damp rock was stunning and the little puddles of seawater looked like pools of liquid light. The air was cold but refreshing and when the sun shone directly on you it felt warm on your little pink, sea-blasted face.

The walk felt like an adventure, because even though I have done it so many times, I always forget how beautiful the weather-beaten scenery here is... from the vast beach decorated with layers of water, seaweed and stone... the shallow stream coating the multicoloured pebbles so that they shine like little gems...

...The giant cliffs topped with soft, mossy grass and golden-pink flowers...

...There's even the odd waterfall or two... refreshing!

I got soaked even from this distance

Also, it's hard to be sad or stressed when you have two big, happy dogs bounding along the beach like the King and Queen of Robin Hood's Bay.

Soggy doggy
On our expedition we also found a treasure or two...

This rock pool looks like a window into a fairytale land

We kept on walking until the beach becomes a big pile or rocks that look like giant chunks of cinder toffee and clambered up the cliff. Then suddenly, from the distance, my mum heard a chorus of whining cries carrying across the wind. Seals.

We spotted them from a distance, dark silhouettes with the shimmering sea behind them. Dark heads bobbing in and out the gentle waves.

So we crept up for a closer look...

Carefully lying down on a big rock nearby I spotted the giant pile of cute, fluffy blubber, rolling around soaking up the sun. It was hard to tell where one seal ended and another began.

look at the big fat one on the right giving me evils

the one on the far left is waving at me

One brave little seal tried to sneak up on us and his little face just reminded me of a soggy Ruby.

I tried to imitate the low-pitched wailing noise to bring him closer, but he clearly wasn't impressed..

He soon swam off and joined his friends

I've never seen seals in the wild and I just sat and watched them for ages. They seem to have so much character and their little faces had so much expression.

This one's called Al and he gave me a cheeky wink..

This fine ladyseal is Sally and she's a model...

She's such a poser

cheeky wink
I think this big fella is the boss, the wise old grandaddy of the group...

Then of course there's the loner of the group, out on a rock of his own thinking about life and what it means to be a seal...

 I got so many lovely photos, they're very photogenic because they just sit there looking at you with their big fat eyes and the sun makes their fluffy coats look golden and ginger.

I was sad to leave but the tide was coming in, and alas! I am no seal.

We clambered up the cliff, grabbing clumps of grass and digging my feet into the soft, mud to reach the top of the hill.

Of course Ruby made it look easy.

The view was outstanding, there's just such a multitude of colours and variety of textures and terrain.

We ended up getting dreadfully lost and battled with many thorns before we eventually found the path home.
The cliff tops are so scenic with many winding streams and little, wooden bridges, sometimes with a stray sheep blocking your way. The trees are gnarled and wild like in a fairytale and the old, stone walls make you feel like you're a wild farmer's child in some seemingly ideal past life. One of my favourite books as a child was Shadowmancer by G.P Taylor, which was set on the fierce clifftops of Robin Hood's Bay in the world of smugglers and magic, I spent hours as a child up here pretending I was Kate.

We eventually (after many muddy hours) reached the comforting familiarity of the Bay's beach, just as the sun started making our shadows long.

We dragged our weary legs on wards and my parents and brother rewarded themselves with a massive portion of Fish and Chips, unfortunately I no longer like them after eating them so much when I was younger when we first bought our house here and had no kitchen.

Salty, sandy and covered in mud, we all clambered back into the car. I rested my head on the big pink and white marshmallow that is my duvet and settled into a deep sleep, worn out with happiness and feeling fully content.

Sometimes the best way to be happy is to escape the world we live in full of items and duties and the internet and to run away to the seaside. If it works for the seals it will work for me.

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