Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Under Canvas

We have been planning a camping weekend in the Brecon Beacons, not too far away and breathtaking in its beauty. However, the forecast is grim and my old fella not as enthusiastic as he could be. I wish the Met office would be more precise, it says 'light rain' for Friday and Saturday and the best day, Sunday, they promise will be 'cloudy.' Now, ordinarily a little light rain is no problem but for a long time married couple a little past the flush of youth, a miserable wet weekend under canvas could be dreadful. He will moan, well they always do dont they, even in fine weather and the cheap, carefree hike through the hills I had invisaged could well turn out to be a sopping wet, cold nightmare. My dream camping partner has never been Victor Meldrew and a Victor Meldrew with wet feet will be even worse.
So, to pack or not to pack? that is the question.

There are several reasons for choosing the Beacons apart from the scenery. I want to visit some iron age sites, to stride across the hills and try to imagine them as they were a thousand years or more ago. Legend says that, after the slaughter of her family, Heledd founded a small church, now known as St Illytds some twenty miles away, outside the national park and I would like to visit it to get an idea of the landscape in which she ended her days.
There are so many neolithic sites in the Brecon area and I love to photograph the standing stones (most actually fallen now), and later paint them, capturing the rolling mist and the purple tipped mountains in the distance. I've never been to Llanthony Abbey either although I have always intended to. Life is beginning to roll by so quickly and we have no free weekends left in August and it will be another summer of not doing anything I really want to. So, dammit, I think we will go and if we end up spending most of the time drying off in the pub - so be it.


  1. Live dangerously Judith and go. You can always pack up and come home early if the light rain is more of the persistent variety. Enjoy!

  2. There's a lot to be said for drying off in a pub on a research trip, and only right and proper that you sample the local hostelries while you're away, to soak up the local colour. It probably isn't too different to how it was in Heledd's day.