Sunday, 2 August 2009
Bishops, bars and Bude - part 2
(Continued from part 1 below)
In any case, I'd discovered that it took one and a half hours to get from North Devon to Plymouth in daylight on a dry road. I needed to head back, especially as it was now early evening and had started to rain. A pity, though: it was the landlord's birthday, there was music to listen to and nibbles to eat, and the place was starting to fill up. It took a little willpower to leave.
But the best moment of my holiday was the evening in Bude next day. It was gloriously sunny. I had dinner at The Castle Restaurant. This was at the rear of the castellated (crenellated?) Council HQ, formerly the eccentric home of an inventor. It faced a green, and all the rear part had a wonderful view out to sea, taking in the entrance of the Bude Canal, the river mouth, the sands of Bude Haven, and the slowly setting sun. They gave me a window table. I had a four-course meal with wine. It wasn't cheap (£40, with the tip) but it was yummy and well within my definition of 'fine dining'. The young waitress was chatty, attentive and efficient. When eating alone, the whole experience matters. I savoured it all. And afterwards a walk seawards by the Canal, past the lock gates, up onto the cliff, and out to the little pepperbox tower at Compass Point. What a view. Sun, sand, surf, seagulls. Exhilaration! I have to say, Bude may be a rather remote resort, but it speaks to me. I may go to live there one day.