Blustery Bridlington

After a decent night’s sleep in our draughty room, we got up around 7.30am, as breakfast was served in The Mariners’ House between 8.00 – 9.00. As we walked into the dining room and were shown to a seat by the window, we were delighed by the amazing sea-front view, over several eclectic rooftops. A restless North Sea rolled tirelessly onto the sand and back to the sea again, and several joggers and dog-walkers enjoyed an early start and even a couple of intrepid (mad?) swimmers and surfers took to the icy water. πŸ™‚

We had hoped to get a photo of the sunrise at 08:07 hours, but a cloudy sky prevented us from doing so.

It was pleasant in the dining room, although, like the rest of the building, the furniture and decor were dated. To me, however, this added to the charm of the old building and gave it lots of character. Once again, our window seat meant we were in the firing line for the cold draughts coming in directly from the sea; it must cost a fortune to heat this place.

Breakfast was hearty and plentiful, served up by a smiling member of staff. We started with a bowl of cereal and either tea or coffee, and we followed it up with the full English consisting of bacon, sausage, beans, egg, tomato and toast. It seemed we were the only people who had purchased the optional breakfast, as no other guests put in an appearance in the dining room.

Back in our room we went onto Google maps and had a look at ways we could get to Bridlington, about 17 miles away. We didn’t want to take the car as we would have the hassle of parking it, and also one of us would have to drive and therefore couldn’t have a drink. πŸ™‚ We saw that we could get to Bridlington in one hour and 20 minutes on the number 13 bus, or in 38 minutes on the Northern Rail train. We decided to go by train.

We wrapped up well in our coats, hats and scarves and set off for the train station which was a 12 minute walk away. As we left the guest house we were assailed by the freezing wind, and I was glad that my Barbour hat, although far from the latest fashion, was snug and warm and had ear-flaps. Google had told us there was a train at 10.00am from platform 4, so we joined the short queue and bought return tickets; we could see that there was a train back from Bridlington every hour, until eight o’clock tonight. πŸ™‚

The train journey to Bridlington took about 38 minutes and we had five stops. On arrival, we left the train station and walked to the sea-front. I had forgotten to bring gloves and my hands were freezing; I kept them deep into my pockets.

The last time we’d been to Bridlington was in February 1988, just after we’d got engaged. In fact, it was our first weekend together. πŸ™‚ I could remember there were lots of seafood stalls and, as I love fish and shellfish, I looked around eagerly for any places selling fresh cockles and mussels, yum yum. We walked down to the landing stages where there were several fishermen in yellow oilskins, hosing down their nets and other equipment. Lots of boats rested nearly on the sandy seabed as the tide was far out. It made a charming nautical scene so I took some photos, my hands freezing as they manipulated my phone.

We could see several sea-food and fish merchants, but all the shops were wholesalers and there were no cockle and mussel stalls to be seen. Like Whitby, the vast majority of the town was closed down and empty for the winter. As we made our freezing way along the pier, we spotted a cafΓ© that was doing a roaring trade, so we thankfully went in out of the cold and ordered a large white Americano each.

Back outside, we walked along the seafront for a while, and came to a closed-down funfair, the ferris wheel outlined silently against the windblown sky. It had a forlorn look about it.

As we walked through the town, browsing in the shops, I spotted one of those shops, a bit like B&M Bargains, that seems to sell absolutely everything. They were selling gloves at Β£1.00 a pair, those stretchy one-size-fits-all ones, so I went in and bought a pair. πŸ™‚ One good thing was that because of all the walking we were doing, my fitness monitor was already clocking up lots of steps; yesterday I’d done over 15,000.

At lunchtime we had a quick Google for a nearby pub or restaurant, and we saw that there was a Wetherspoons nearby, called the Prior John. We didn’t want a lot to eat after our big breakfast, but we thought we could manage a sharing plate.

It was blissfully warm and cosy inside the pub and, not long after we sat down, it started to snow outside! πŸ™‚ We laughed at the fact that we’d come to a northern seaside resort in winter rather than our intended destination of Riga, Latvia, but when we looked at the weather app for the current temperature in Riga, we saw that it was -14Β°C, so it was tropical here in comparison! πŸ˜€

We enjoyed some chicken strips and chips in a spicy barbecue sauce, washed down with some of the cheapy beer and prosecco. We were not in any hurry to be outside in the cold again, and in any case it was very pleasant in the pub. As there didn’t seem to be much going on in Bridlington we decided we’d go for the 16:03 train back to Scarborough.

Braving the elements once more, we went out into the cold where, although the snow flurries had stopped, the biting wind was as strong as ever and darkness had already fallen over the town. We headed directly for the train station, neither looking left nor right, and we arrived just before four o’clock to see that the train was already in.

We arrived back at our guest house around five o’clock, and I took a long, hot shower and blow-dried my hair. I had brought some smart shoes and a lovely Joe Brown’s strappy top to wear tonight, but sitting on our bed watching TV with the window behind us letting in frigid gusts of air, soon made me change back into my fleece top again. We looked out of the window at the Grand Hotel and the faint line of the surf on the sand in the darkness, and decided we’d go out and get some photos.

Although cold, there was something very pleasant about walking along the seafront in the dark, listening to the North Sea washing onto the sand. Hardly anybody was about at all, and there was almost no traffic on the road. What a contrast to the summer months! We decided we’d go back to our digs, watch both episodes of Coronation Street, and go out again at 9.00pm, which is exactly what we did. πŸ™‚

We walked along to the Lord Rosebery pub again and entered the pub into a delicious warmth, compared to the bitter cold outside. My phone needed charging and I had my charger with me, so we looked around for a table along the wall, near a power outlet. We sat down and used the app to order our drinks; we weren’t hungry.

It was great in the pub, and it contained its usual assortment of characters. Every time a smoker went outside, or someone came in, tendrils of icy air made their way into the pub, and we contemplated moving to another table nearer the back, once my phone was charged.

At that point, two drunken blokes sat down at a table near the door. They’d started off as mates having a couple of pints on a night out, but they had obviously been making the most of the special offers on the booze, because they were staring at each other belligerently and trying to settle some sort of argument they’d been having, one trying to appease the other. Eventually they decided on the sensible option, which was to go home, and they ordered a taxi and went outside to wait for it, leaving blissful peace and quiet behind them. πŸ™‚

We stayed in the pub until booting-out time, then made our way back to the Mariners where we once again settled down for the night, and slept well. It had been a different way to spend a Monday, if nothing else. πŸ™‚

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