Monday, March 16, 2009

Haverfordwest Rail Station (Mar 10, 2009)

Today I am living a lot of my dreams. St David’s is an awesome city. It may be Britain’s smallest city, but it certainly is turning out to be my favorite!

I landed in the morning at Haverfordwest and caught the 11am 411 bus to St David’s. This drops you right in front of the cathedral. I got off from the bus and went straight in. The cathedral is HUGE with humongously huge altars (and a lot of them). The entry is free and you can go in and admire the art work. Also, from the outside it looks more like a castle than a cathedral.

Next to it is the Bishops Palace which is rundown but for 3 GBP it is worth the price of admission. One can climb onto the top and view the Cathedral from there too.

The refectory in the Cathedral has a pretty good place to eat and I had my lunch there. A pot of tea along with a Ham sandwich on wheat for 7GBP was pretty cheap. Once this was done I left.

Now let’s rewind to my bus journey. When I got in at Haverfordwest I was looking forward to seeing the Welsh coastline. You know those movies where they have these cliffs with sea/ocean waves hitting them. I was so looking forward to it that when I was half way in the bus I was disappointed that I wasn’t seeing any.

Suddenly the bus came over a hill and lo and behold there it was. Beautiful cliffs with the sea water – what a sight! My mouth was open.

After I completed my cathedral trip I asked at the Visitor Center for the closest place to see water and she told me about Caaerfai Bay. It was a close walk, about 15 minutes from the city center. I walked and when I came to it again I had that mind blowing experience. Below me was the sea with a small cove (like in the Enid Blyton books), and rocks all around. This has been a dream for a while and I had to sit for a while just to admire it.

I also hiked down to the cove and sat for a while too looking at the far away mountains, the ship in the sea, the rocks (I felt Boski there with me too). Words fail me – it was that beautiful.

I left with a bittersweet feeling – but realizing something: All along these trips I wonder sometimes if I am crazy. You know travelling alone, running from place to place – what am I achieving? Then I saw this today and it was all worth it. I could now say that I too have stood on the cliff above the sea, I too have seen the English villages, I too have sat on an empty secluded station with no one around (Exactly what I am doing now).

St David’s is highly highly recommended. The cathedral is nice, the people are nice (I chatted with most of them and they had a smile on their face), and the hike on the hills bordering the sea (It is called the Pembroke Trail) is out of the world. It goes on for miles, and I did just this half a mile.

Time for me to head back home but I leave St David’s with wonderful memories and a message from Fr Dorian Gray (either the Vicar or Bishop of the cathedral) to Fr Augustine of a church in Kerala. This is a reminder so that I do not forget and also of the friendliness of the people here.

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