We had a lovely afternoon today as we used one of my retirement gifts.
I had a gift of afternoon tea for two at the Royal Bath hotel in Bournemouth from two sisters I taught. I had both of them in school from the age of three and it was a lovely gift for them to have given me.
We decided today was the day.
Last day of October and we were in three quarter length sleves and it was bright and beautiful and Oh My the sunset was immense.
We walked along Bournemouth seafront for a little while. Although it is our neighbouring town, and the town we both lived in before we were married, we rarely go to Bournemouth other than to visit Nigel's mom - Oh and I used to go there to work everyday! It was nice to see Bournemouth beach, with it's iconic pier.
It was like being abroad - and not just because of the weather. We were the only people speaking English, Bournemouth has always been known for its foreign language students but add to that the large Polish community now and we were in the minority.
We then headed to the Royal Bath. The Royal Bath used to be the only 5 star hotel in the town at one point. Now it doesn't show its stars outside and it is clear to see why. I in no way want to diminish my gift - which was lovely and a very special special treat, but I would not recommend the Royal Bath. We had a school ball there which was poor. The food was poor and the service poor, but we approached today with an open mind. I have to say it was shoddy. We chose to sit outside as it was so beautiful. It was a good job Nigel had tissues as he was able to clean the table.
They were all covered in crumbs. We chose the cleanest. We had a pot of very tepid tea, poor sandwiches and the cakes were laughable. I swear the eclairs were Iceland's best min eclairs, the Victoria Sandwich was one small slice of cake cut into two pieces or chunks and we were not given plates until we asked for them and then mine had to go back as it was dirty. We had to ask twice for the prosecco that was included. The scones were lovely though. All in all it was very disappointing and I would not recommend it, but the gift was special as it got us out and gave us the gift of a perfect sunset too.
After tea we walked out onto the cliff top and we marvelled at what a wonderful late afternoon sunset we saw. We stood for ages as it got darker and darker and more and more beautiful
He looks very red int he face - twas the sun shining on him as it set
we then drove to 'our town' neighbouring Poole not expecting to see the beautiful light over the harbour and Brownsea Island as we drove round Sandbanks and Evening Hill. Just magical
Today I am thankful for
- a wonderful gift
- a fabulous sunset
- an amazingly beautiful home town we love
- retirement - time to do all of these things