Home > UK > No beer in Beer – The Devon Hors d’ouvres

No beer in Beer – The Devon Hors d’ouvres

We stayed our first week in the seaside town of Seaton. A slightly jarring mix of quaint old and grotty new, applicable in equal amounts to architecture and clientele. The slightly crusty element does have advantages though, one being Byrne Jones, a cross between a museum of Victorian grooming products (one suspects they still crush the local stones for toothpaste) and an ultra-modern photo reprographic laboratory. Our one successful purchase though


was shaving sticks, the old fashioned yet very sensible alternative to aerosol cans of foam, light and at 70p cheap. The recommendation from the shop owner was only slightly undermined by his full beard!

What underpins the town is the crescent pebbled beach and the rock pools at low tide, and this is where we invariably headed. Many poor little crabs were hounded, stuck in buckets and generally tormented by rough little inquisitive fingers. The one day we went to the brilliantly, but not aptly, named Beer, we found a great little hut with all sorts of surprising info about these little creatures. Limpets live for 17 years! The place should also be called “Tea and Tourists” to avoid confusion.

Later the same day (Alan had all 3 kids for the day) we headed for the main Seaton beach with a little remote controlled speedboat. All was well until the boat gave up without any warning – about 20m out to sea. Even with a shrimp net, it was immediately obvious that going waist high in the water was pointless. We were starting to attract a crowd, especially as the wind was blowing the boat down the shore, and I left Theo possible a little too far away. As Theo headed towards the waves, the boat/Theo dilemma intensified. More people watching from the prom. What would irresponsible father of 3 do next. Boat/Theo, boat/Theo, the dilemma continued until the boat started to move, slowly and waterlogged it moved closed, probably no more that 5 m from the shore, but with a steep shelf still a challenge. Boat/Theo….. Brave dad jumped into the sea and at full stretch snagged the boat with the net  followed by clapping from the promenade as Theo was also wrestled screaming from Kai as he had been rugby tackled at the edge of the surf. As the crowds slowly dispersed , we started breaking the beach code by throwing stones.

The whole week was a great chance to relax and enjoy a few days with Jo’s mum and also celebrate Elena and Barry’s joint Birthdays. One of the highlights was a trip on Seaton tramway to Colyton. The trip was interlaced with bird watching, churches, ice cream and a delicious lunch on Colyton Station platform. All in all, very memorable and with a few hugs, kisses and tears we departed Devon for the trip to Ashford, the gateway to Europe.

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  1. Heather & Arleta
    June 16, 2011 at 1:54 pm

    Hi Al, Heather and Arleta here! We’ve just had a giggle at the Theo/boat dilemma, trust you!
    Hope you and the family are all having a lovely time, it’s very quiet without you.
    Looking forward to the next update!
    Take care, H&A x

    • June 30, 2011 at 6:40 am

      Hello my Dears. Thanks for the comment. Sorry for the slow response, I was getting my head around how the comments thing works. Children still alive, although occasionally a bit battered and bruised from various bike related injuries.
      Really enjoying the trip so far, just can’t quite believe a month has gone by already.
      Take care, Alan.

  2. Debs, Dave & Cate
    June 16, 2011 at 8:21 pm

    Cate wanted to say happy birthday to Elena, sounds like she is having a great time. Theo/boat dilemma is a repeat of a similar childhood incident of child vs dinghy. That time the dinghy was lost at sea.

    • June 17, 2011 at 2:58 pm

      Thanks for the message. We have been swimming, bike riding and a bit of walking. We went up a big hill to an old ruined castle and I looked over the edge of a really high cliff. Lots of love, Elena

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