The last leg of the trip was a bit of a trip down memory lane, for two different reasons. Cardiff was a place I stayed as a child while my Father was attending the University of Wales, and Costwalds was the quaint little English village I had always fantasised about as a child, as I read books from Enid Blyton and Roald Dahl.
Wales. Aside from the fact that it valued its Welsh heritage (you can see Welsh translations for every road sign), it is a beautiful region in the South West of Britain. In particular, we spent most of our time in Cardiff, to reminisce some wonderful childhood memories growing up. The city centre around Queen Street is where it is most alive, and tucked at the corner of the street is the large stone walls that hid the Cardiff Castle. Cardiff Castle had stunned me as a child, and still does to this day. The grounds made you imagine English warriors in heavy steel suits, and the old castle high above the ground makes you fantasise about being a princess in a tower and rescued by a knight in a shining armour. And that’s how you begin to have absurd expectations for real life, kids.
When night falls and it’s time to be adults again, Cardiff Bay is pretty nice place for a quiet hang-out. There are varieties of restaurants by the sea, and a particular good night would be to have a sunset dinner in one of the better restaurants, and have a stroll afterwards with some gelato in one hand. The wind smells of the salty sea, and the loud drunks are pretty fun to watch.
Once upon a time, there was a small village with grey solid stone houses lining the small paved streets. All of the houses had chimneys, and as you walked past the little tea shops and antique boutiques, you swore you could smell the heavy scent of fresh baked cookies in the air. You walked towards the bakery, and along the way you passed a small creek with ducks swimming around in organised chaos, with a puppy barking enthusiastically at them.
That’s probably what you will find written in an Enid Blyton book, but it is most definitely something you will see in Costwalds. Costwalds is the perfect place to go and do nothing. The little village fed every single childhood fantasy I have ever had when I read books of faraway English lands. I have been on a silent quest to seek possible retirement places when I grow old and cranky and smoke cigars, and this place is the first one on the list. It is a place where you wouldn’t mind having cups of tea all day, and stare at the clear creek waters while sitting on a bench all evening.