TechnomadicsVagabonding Europe

…Just like that, we’re motorhomers again!

We’ve spent a fairly relaxed few days preparing Nettle and ourselves for our reunion — a bit of mould-removal (bloody mould!!), fridge-cleaning, reorganising our stuff, and cleaning the water tank — which involved an interesting little indoor flood when a plastic widget broke (there’s always something!). We repeatedly postponed our departure, waiting on our new enormous battery to charge up, so we got to have a few idle days in there.

It all felt very surreal, right up until the time came to say goodbye to our gracious hosts Anne and Mike, bid Lygos farm farewell, climb into Nettle, and drive off down the driveway (after one false start with a grabby handbrake that wouldn’t release at first — eek!).

It felt bizarre to be so high up, with this enormous near-horizontal steering wheel in front of me, but everything seemed to be functioning properly. That said, it didn’t stop my anxious hyper-awareness for anything funny going on — was the steering a bit stiff? What was that rattle?

We kept our inaugural drive short, and after a happily uneventful but scenic drive through gentle grassy mountains that reminded me of Austria, we pulled up in a visitor centre car park in the Brecon Beacons, a spectacular series of mountain ranges, carved once-upon-a-time by glaciers and still sporting marvellously scalloped shapes.

A quick meal of scrambled eggs later, we rugged up and ambled out and up Pen y Fan, the tallest peak of the Beacons (not it’s twin, Fan y Big — shame, really). We were forewarned as we trudged up the trail that visibility was near-zero and it was very windy. When we finally got to the top, though, holding our windward ears to try to stop the brain-penetrating cold, and laughing at the absurdity of our ‘pleasant stroll’, we couldn’t believe the wind that whipped past us, pulling at our cheeks so we looked like skydivers, and threatening to whisk us away and off the edge. Streamers of mist raced by, and it was just as well they were doing something interesting, as the mist was all there was to look at from the top.

Katherine holding her ear on in the Brecon Beacons

Walking up Pen y Fan into the clouds

Me, trying not to be blown away

Once we’d reached the top, we finally gave ourselves permission to retreat, and we hurried out of the gale and down beneath the line of cloud. For a moment of clarity, we could see across the valleys, a string of lakes down one side, and patchwork fields in the other direction, off in the distance. The rolling hills around us had the same crinkly texture I remember strongly from the Connemara National Park in Ireland.

The route down Pen y Fan

Once we got back to Nettle (with our now traditional sigh of relief when she came into view — still there, and still not on fire), we tried to coax our numb fingers back to life wrapped around a cup of tea, then drove around to our selected home for the night — a wildcamp beside one of the reservoirs to the south.

So, we’re pretty much ‘at home’ again, and despite those three months at Lygos farm, everything feels normal! Funny thing, time.

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One Response to Motorhoming like it’s 2009

  1. Daniel Rigos says:

    Love that last photo.. May be inspired by it for a painting methinks!!