Sunday, June 8, 2014

On Holiday in Devon, Darling

As part of our wrap-up month in England (oh my, the time is just slipping away!), we spent a few days last week with the Professor's parents, known as Nonnie and Opa, in Devon, a particularly scenic area of southwestern England. (Fun fact for fellow Jane Austen fans: Sense and Sensibility was set in this county.) This is a region sustained mainly by agriculture and tourism -- and by "tourism," I mean "British people on holiday by the sea."  I'm going to try to let the following photo dump tell the highlights of the story, in which seven wannabe-Brits went on holiday by the sea and enjoyed themselves very much indeed.

Driving in Devon, and indeed in much of the UK, evolves as follows. One leaves the motorway (a.k.a. "dual carriageway," a.k.a. a divided highway), which may look like this:

Then it gets charming.

Then it gets downright alarming.

Believe it or not, that's a two-way road, people. If someone comes from the opposite direction, one of the parties must courteously back up. Kudos to the Professor for maneuvering a 7-passenger minivan through it!

Countryside walking is a very English thing to do, and we enthusiastically did our part. How could you not, with a view like this?

Another favorite was a visit to Saltram, a National Trust property where, incidentally, the movie version of Sense and Sensibility with Hugh Grant and Emma Thompson was filmed. Anyone recognize the house?

Or the 700-year-old oak tree?

Or -- unrelated to the movie -- this people?

Part of the family also visited an aquarium in Plymouth, at the request of Ian, who never met an aquarium he didn't like:

(Just like your own kids, mine practice this harmonious camaraderie all the time! Really! ;-))

And finally, and I love that I get to type this sentence, we also had the good fortunate of visiting a lovely donkey sanctuary. It was built by a woman who clearly had a passion for donkeys, and has written several books about them, much to our enjoyment. Really, it was lovely.

And hilarious.

You're welcome. 


  1. These pictures are amazing! Indeed your photos tell the story well! Johanna

  2. What fun!! Thanks for taking us along!

  3. Looks like a wonderful time!

  4. Gillian in WalesJune 17, 2014 at 2:29 PM

    Looks a fantastic time was had by all!

    Just to let you know, a motorway is different to a dual carriageway. The picture above is a dual carriageway. Motorways are longer, with more regulations; e.g. no stopping on a motorway, no tractors or learner drivers on a motorway, bigger barriers in the middle, 70mph speed limit, white and blue signage. Dual carriageways could have any speed limit up to 70mph, could have tractors etc etc and green and white signage.

    Not that you will be needing to know that for much longer...

    Been thinking of you all, time has gone so fast. So SO glad we were able to meet up. Thank you for that.

    1. Thanks, Gillian! You are my leading authority on all things UK. :-)

      Just did a page in my "highlights of the year" scrapbook on our visit with you in Wales. Such fond memories! Thanks again to all of you for receiving and returning the visit!

    2. It was a complete joy and delight. Thank YOU for your welcome. You should have received something in the post from us, by the way - and I bizarrely dreamed about it last night!