In recent years I’ve been fortunate to celebrate my birthday in a number of different places. A memorable day in Ecuador visiting Cotopaxi, which was somewhat spoiled by an attack of altitude sickness! An even more memorable one in Ranthambore National Park in India, where a guide promised to find me a birthday tiger – and did! A day spent travelling to the Atacama in Chile, one of my dream destinations. A number of birthdays in Paris, including my 40th when my husband surprised me with a weekend visit. And a lovely birthday weekend three years ago in Lucca, Italy.
Sometimes we stay closer to home, however. In 2019 we went to St Ives in Cornwall, as we weren’t long back from North Korea. And last year the pandemic kept us at home in London! This year I have been celebrating with a stay at a lovely hotel in Dorset and I thought I’d share my birthday day with you as my response to Amy’s Lens Artists Challenge theme, A Day of My Week. This was a special day in my week. As it also included a walk I’m doubling up with Jo’s Monday Walks.
We stayed at the Summer Lodge Hotel in Evershot. The house is set in pretty gardens at one end of the village street. They spoiled me with chocolates in the room on arrival and the rest of our stay was as good as the start!
The weather spoiled me too! We’d had rain overnight but the day itself was lovely, sunny and warm for the end of October. We both love being by the sea and I’d long wanted to visit Lyme Regis, because of its connections with Jane Austen, so that’s where we went.
We had a wonderful walk from the village centre along Marine Parade, stopping for coffee on the way. It was warm enough to sit outside in the sun!
We also walked part of the way along the Cobb, the harbour’s breakwater. But we didn’t go right to the end as the tide was high and the wind was whipping up the waves. There was a lot of spray and we decided against getting soaked! Not everyone was so cautious, and I got some interesting photos of people further out along the breakwater.
The Cobb features in Jane Austen’s Persuasion. Louisa Musgrove jumps off the steps expecting Captain Wentworth to catch her when he wasn’t ready; she falls, hitting her head, and is rendered unconscious. It is many weeks before she recovers and when she does she is transformed from a silly girl to a more sober and sensible woman.
Like the ladies in the novel, we found the winds on the higher level rather strong, but you can believe that I was a lot more careful than Louisa when descending the steep steps!
Once back in the village centre we enjoyed an ice cream sitting on a bench overlooking the sea.
Later we visited the museum. This part of the Dorset coast is known as the Jurassic coast and is famous for the large number of fossils to be found here. The museum had lots of interesting information about them and some good examples of fossils found near Lyme. It also had a section about Mary Anning, a famous fossil collector who lived in a house on the site where the museum now stands.
After a quick visit to a contemporary gallery in the Town Mill we headed back to the hotel for some down time in the spa – a relaxing swim and session in the hot tub!
We then had a fabulous ‘fine dining’ meal in the restaurant, featuring local produce such as mackerel and lamb. A great way to end this rather special ‘day in my week’.
I visited Evershot and Lyme Regis in October 2021