29 July 2006
Breakfast at the Wilton was lovely. Most of us had the Full English breakfast (fried egg, fried toast (!), hash brown, mushrooms, toasted tomatoes, sausage, and bacon – with cereal and juice and coffee), but Jenny was very happy with her two boiled eggs.
We decided to take a sightseeing bus to check out Llandudno and Conwy just down the road. I found the architecture of Landudno amazing–filled with 100+ year old Victorian buildings.
Conwy is an amazing town. It's a walled city built by King Edward I in 1283, and still retains the majority of the wall. It's right on the edge of the Conwy River, so it's an absolutely beautiful setting.
The first thing we did in Conwy was to walk along the wall.
Barb gave me a picture of me so that I could prove that I was with them
And then, of course, we had to explore the castle. It's old–really old, so it's mostly fallen apart. All the wooden floors are gone. (It was actually explicitly taken apart in the 1600's and sold for scrap.) But it's still a huge and complex place.
By this time, it was way past lunchtime, so we went hunting for someplace. The proprietors of the hotel had recommended the Conwy Bistro, but it turned out that it wasn't open for lunch. By this time, it was raining, so everyone was going inside for someplace for lunch. Consequently, everything was full. After trying four or five places, we gave up and ordered takeaway and ate in the park when it was only drizzling and not outright raining. That was the low part of the day.
After lunch, we went to tour Plas Mawr, a mostly-restored Elizabethan town home. It was pretty amazing. The plasterwork, doors, and on and on is mostly correct for the 1500's. They gave us cool audio tours, which Jenny couldn't get to work right, so I mostly guided her.
One of the doors had a cutaway for the cat-as-mouser to get through, which Jenny loved.
Most signs were in English and Welsh.
Wales, though way different than Hawaii, had lots in common – regular rain, a beautiful setting, and, surprising to us, frequent rainbows.
We had dinner at an Indian place across from the hotel (recommended, but only okay – man, there are lots of Indian places in the UK!), then walked the beach and pier before bed.
After we put the kids down, Barb and I went out in search of what drinks the Welsh make. The Irish have their whiskey, the Scotch have their whisky, and the British have their ale. What do the Welsh have? The proprietors had mentioned Welsh mead, but I only saw it in one store and didn't get it.(It was early in the day in Conwy and I didn't want to lug the bottle all day – my mistake.) I did find some Welsh ale and bought a bottle of that to try, but I'd heard that the Welsh have a "mild beer" (that is the name), to contrast with British "bitter," but we never found that either. We went to a place that the proprietor recommended but they only had one Welsh ale. (It was nice, but nothing outstanding.) We walked the Promenade and enjoyed the beautiful place.