the english scarlet land of happy happy joy joy

My alarm rudely woke me at an ungodly hour, “The time is six fifteen, it is time to wake up”, in a British voice no less. While I scrambled to finish my last minute packing and put plates of food and bowls of water outside for the cats, I looked up at the sky slowly brightening and took in the fact that my 38th year on this planet had arrived. Oh me oh my! Thirty-eight years and what have I accomplished? Is this a thought at anyone’s birthday after the age of thirty?

I bypassed the thought with a flight to Düsseldorf where I met my boyfriend waiting for me with a lovely box of gifts. I love birthday presents first thing in the morning! And after a quick stop at his parent’s house for birthday kisses, Meerrettich Miree (a horseradish cream cheese spread – MY FAVORITE) on toast and a sad goodbye to their house on Reuterstrasse (it just sold), we headed off towards Calais to take the tunnel to Folkestone.

I must admit I was a bit apprehensive (combined with a touch of claustrophobia) about the EuroTunnel. How exactly deep are we under the water? Will there be attendants to direct me to my nearest exit in case of emergency? Or was it, if something happened you were pretty much a goner. I tried to distract myself with making stupid faces at my boyfriend and singing along with Lily Allen. I found enough things to keep me entertained for the thirty-five minutes (Amazing right? ONLY 35 minutes) it took to get from France to England under several metres of water that could come rushing in at any moment.

We arrived in Folkestone, England to buckets of rain pouring from the dark sky. And let’s not forget that we must combine that with now having to drive on the left side of the road. Tricky, tricky – and off to Canterbury we went.

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Canterbury was cute. We stayed at the Falstaff Hotel which used to be a coaching inn, established in the year 1403. The rain had turned to a drizzle so we set off on foot to find some birthday dinner. We chose an Indian restaurant that apparently has a pea soup on the menu that they refuse to serve because it is, quoting the waiter, “pretty terrible”. Why then is it on the menu? Whatevs. The food they did serve us was pretty good, but I am sucker for lamb with a yogurt and cucumber sauce from anywhere. We ended the night at a small hotel for a nightcap where I ended up spilling half of my port down my jacket. And happy birthday to ME!

When I woke the next morning at the Falstaff I silently told myself – You have made it one more year, now this year let’s get these important things you want started. I’ll just leave that there for now – let’s go to CORNWALL.

I saw thousands of cows and sheep, a few pigs and horses in dresses. Fine, not really dresses but those jacket thingies – I like dresses better. And then we drove over this hill and lo and behold – STONEHENGE!! There it was, just 150 feet from the highway. Stonehenge, right there! YO Stonehenge! Did you know the age of it is estimated at 3100 BC. Now THAT is old.

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Still on our six hour drive to our hotel in Mawgan Porth….. I entertained us by reading signs and some of the funny city names (yes, I am becoming my mother), oh and yelling out whenever I saw any sort of animal – COW! PIGS! HORSES IN DRESSES! Finally to my boyfriend’s relief we arrived at the Scarlet Hotel. Here is the view from our room. GORGEOUS!

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The Scarlet was exactly what I was wanting for my birthday getaway. It is a brand new hotel in a breathtaking location, plus it is eco-friendly (you know I like that). We arrived around five in the afternoon, checked in and ordered tea service. I love having delicious Earl Grey tea brought to my room to enjoy on my balcony. Heaven. Then it was a quick walk down to the beach to chase after seagulls and watch the brave surfers hanging ten. One of the sweetest things about the hotel is Jasper, the hotel dog, you can take him for walks on the beach! How fun is that?

We had dinner at the hotel, it was good but nothing truly amazing – but then again, I can be happy with Kraft Mac n’ Cheese for dinner too. After dinner, we headed to the bar area which for half of the time, we were the only ones there, no customers and no bartender. But it is the place where I fell in love with my Atlantic Gold Ale, I am sure you saw it in my earlier post. And The German was in love with a new whiskey – The Peat Monster, it has a very smoky taste. He loved it and we had to return the next night for a few more rounds of our newfound loves.

The next day was a bit of craziness. We headed into the nearest largest town in search of an adaptor for my boyfriend’s computer. Never come to England without one because they are not easy to find. TRUST ME. Several hours later with adaptor in hand we headed towards the most southern point and hit the adorable towns of St. Ives, Penzance and Mousehole. So cute! But I was glad I wasn’t the one driving, some of those roads are narrow! Yikes. Plus that whole driving on the left side, double yikes.

So sad that the trip was already coming to a close, we book a reservation at The Seafood Restaurant (yes, that is its real name) in Padstow. And to close the post, a lovely cell phone picture of me getting messy with the yum, fabulous lobster.

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Now it is your turn to visit. GO!

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