Tag Archives: travel

ONE HUNDRED THINGS TO DO IN GUERNSEY WHEN THE REST OF THE WORLD HAS GONE TO SH*T! NO.21 CHAPEL OF ST APOLLINE

We gave thanks and blessing to the Saint of Dentistry this afternoon;

“Blessed are the fillings, joy to all veneers! Under his implants!”

I have driven by the small church hundreds of times since moving to Guernsey, and today I went over its threshold for the first time! In the Proustian sense of the universe, that’s what I love about this hobbity island – seeing new things with the same old pair of eyeball goggles on! You could literally park a small tractor by the front gate and toddlers can enjoy exploring the garden. We could see that the fae were in residence as there looked to be a doorway at the base of one the trees in the garden. However, we didn’t knock or take any chances that they might just put the kettle on for us and rustle up some biscuits… It is well worth a visit (but don’t visit RIGHT NOW or THE GOVERNMENT will fine you TEN THOUSAND POUNDS – if you don’t have a valid permit).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chapel_of_St_Apolline,_Guernsey

It all feels a bit like ‘f*ck off if you’re not from here!’ in G-land at the moment, and that’s sad. We could have all taken in a shielded person from the UK for the duration of the pandemic at this rate. St Appoline lived in Alexandria 249BC and her house still stands – yet we continue to ‘define local’ in a way that betrays the myriad and beautifully rich depth of colour and culture of the island itself. There’s a well of sadness holding up the armpits of any victory cheer we may raise to the skies; all dark and comfortless. Ringing the bell when it’s not a church service gives an air of the impression that if you did such a thing, it may, albeit microcosmically momentarily, take the edge of it. Ring the bell! Up yours corona!

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ONE HUNDRED THINGS TO DO IN GUERNSEY WHEN THE REST OF THE WORLD HAS GONE TO SH*T! NO.19 BATH TUB RACING AT THE MODEL YACHT POND!

Yaaasssssss!!!! What a banging way to kick off TWENTY TWENTY ONE!!!

https://guernseypress.com/news/2021/01/01/bathtubs-to-battle-for-supremacy-on-saturday/

We did not make it to the model yacht pond this afternoon as we had a toddler party to attend. It’s random events like bath tub racing that colour the Bailiwick of Guernsey with whimsical, honest and unique magic that you would not find anywhere else. This event will be in our diary for 2022 (unless we get invaded by Aliens lol?).

Photos below are from our travels today. I feel the gravity and weight of lockdowns happening around the world. I lean into nature to escape and hope that others can feel that release too, in a flower or a fallen tree.

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ONE HUNDRED THINGS TO DO IN GUERNSEY WHEN THE REST OF THE WORLD HAS GONE TO SH*T! NO.18 MONT CHINCHON BATTERY

Mont Chinchon battery was also known as Druids Altar Battery due to its close proximity to Le Trepied dolmen. In 1801 the battery had two 20 pounder cannons which would have been manned by the Guernsey Militia. A magazine was also recorded in 1816, which would have held black powder and shot for the guns. The site was dismantled by the German occupying forces to make way for more modern defences. The construction of a cutting for a railway line also damaged the rear of the battery and the magazine. After the 1940’s the battery fell into disrepair. In 2006 work began to restore the battery and was completed in 2008. 

[source: http://www.museums.gov.gg/batteries%5D
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ONE HUNDRED THINGS TO DO IN GUERNSEY WHEN THE REST OF THE WORLD HAS GONE TO SH*T! NO.17 ROCKPOOLING AT PORT SOIF BEACH

We had went for a wander along Port Soif beach in the grey misty dirge of December in Sarnia Cherie, gem of the sea. Winter is a brutal time on a small rock that is only 12 miles long. When the wind is blowin’ a hoolie it is hard to be active outdoors, especially when the sky is the colour of cheap grey marl leisure wear. Port Soif is a horseshoe shaped bay, at low tide the rock pools stretch out far into the distance. In the summertime swimming at sunset, at high tide, across the golden white(ish) sand is sublime. I miss those summer evenings meeting friends for a swim and to bathe in the sunshine streaming down into the bottom of the skyline – pure bliss! I think that is why wintertime is like being Lord Commander of the Night Watch, you know? The sun rising so late, at 8 oh clock, and setting at 4 oh clock(ish) is so heavy on the soul. I am going to cry so many buckets of joy when I finally see my family on the other side of vaccination street. The heavy energy in the air is an unbearable weight at the best of worst times. Rockpooling at Port Soif at (‘David Bowie kind of’) “Low” tide most bodaciously took the edge of it!

*I am not using a filter on any of these photos. Unfiltered Guernsey is a real gem, and much better than anything fake plastic and dishonest.

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ONE HUNDRED THINGS TO DO IN GUERNSEY WHEN THE REST OF THE WORLD HAS GONE TO SH*T! NO.14 LATE NIGHT CHRISTMESS SHOPPING

Zero social distancing, scant hand sanitization, mobs out celebrating with an early supper en masse and squashed queues inside small shops was witnessed at every turn. It was beginning to look a lot like normal christmess in St Peter Port last night (as per tradition we celebrate the christmessy capitalist crushes on the Thursday evenings). Parking at North Beach car park was a bit of a tight peach. Plaisirs, a shop that sells superliscious Neom candles, were handing out fizzy alcoholic shots. Music was playing in the High Street and yet it did not snow. Late night shopping whilst the rest of the world has gone to sh*t wasn’t so bad.

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ONE HUNDRED THINGS TO DO IN GUERNSEY WHEN THE REST OF THE WORLD HAS GONE TO SH*T! NO.12 LE CREUX ES FAIES

Along the coast road at the end of the island there is a prehistoric passage grave, guarded by the Guernsey National Trust, called Le Creux ès Faïes. According to folklore this is the entrance to the fairy world. I’m not sure that any fairies were home when we knocked. The earth around the monument has a grounding vibration, very much feeling like a dead end. Although, we didn’t linger too long just in case the Goblin King was in town and looking for company!

Folklore says every Friday night the fairies would leave the tomb to join the witches’ revels at Le Catioroc and every full moon would see them dance until daybreak at the Mont Saint.

It is a good smuggling hidey cove and could have been the fairy equivalent of the Alexandra Palace as the views from the mound are outstanding and the acoustics are pretty divine! All night fairy raves can probably continue in Guernsey like no where else in the world because the island’s border remains closed. We left some miniature whistles and tiny glow sticks as offerings and repeated three Calvin Harris anthem lyrics as we toddler bopped in the space and waving our hands up in the air feeling like we were at a Tomorrow Land headlining set.

A good tractor is always a bonus too. And these posts are helping me to feel more confident about exploring the world of G-Land (with a small ‘g’) with mini me, my toddler.

UPYOURSCORONA!!!

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One hundred things to do in Guernsey when the rest of the world has gone to sh*t! No.10 Saumarez Park

Children’s Garden of remembarence 2002
The big pirate ship for 7 – 12 year olds

This is a beautiful playground for children of all ages. My toddler loves it! The wind kicking up the leaves is magical, it brought pure joy to his rosy cheeks. We are very lucky in Guernsey to be able to continue to go about our daily business with relative normality, and ease. The guilt is tangible, and you can taste it in the air we freely and lovingly breathe. It’s a heavy freedom. Even more so by the recent death of local figure Zef Eisenberg, who was very much behind the charity who redeveloped the playground https://eisenbergracing.com/saumarez-park-playground/ Heartbreaking news of his death pierced through the usual covid updates, a sad and sorry ending for Zef, who died trying to break a landspeed record in the UK https://eisenbergracing.com/about/ The madmax race team were often at community events, revving up engines and doing doughnuts in closed car parks to crowds cheering.

https://www.buzzfeed.com/josieayre1/things-all-youll-only-know-if-you-come-from-guernsey

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100 THINGS TO DO IN GUERNSEY WHEN THE REST OF THE WORLD HAS GONE TO SH*T! NO.9 LE DEHUS DOLMEN

Find Dehus Dolmen by travelling east from L’Ancresse  turn left into the road just in front of Sarnia Controls. Or, travel north from Bordeaux Harbour for about a quarter of a mile and look out for the sign on the lamp post on the right at the first corner. The site is about 150m on the left. There is parking for one car to the right of the mound. Open 9am until sunset. Free admission. Perry’s Guide Ref: 7 H4http://www.megalithicguernsey.co.uk/le_dehus_dolmen/

Dehus Dolmen is a prehistoric passage grave approximately 10 metres in length. One of the capstones has a remarkable carving of a man featuring a bearded face, arms and hands, with what appears to be a strung bow, and a series of symbolic designs, known as ‘The Guardian of the Tomb’. Large quantities of finds dating from 3,500-20,00BC have been found at the site, including lots and lots of limpet shells. And body bones. It is a magical place. We didn’t stay too long (the hand in the photo of the front door to the dolmen is my son’s… once you see it!). We had parked the car near to Beaucette Marina and stumbled upon this during our walk – what a lovely surprise! Many moons ago I took a daytrip to the standing stones at Rollrite, Long Compton, Oxfordshire. Back then we had a lie down in the centre of the stones for a while and could tune into the ancient whooshing whirls around the circle. Today, at Dehus Dolmen, we clambered onto the top of the mound and just enjoyed the view.

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100 THINGS TO DO IN GUERNSEY WHEN THE REST OF THE WORLD HAS GONE TO SH*T! NO.8 THE FERMAIN VALLEY TEA ROOMS

At the time of writing this Guernsey is in ‘Stage 5c’ of exit from Covid lockdown. Whilst it sounds like a diagnosis for a devastating and heartbreaking tumour, it actually means that life goes on with whimsical alacrity on the island: we just cannot leave. If we do leave, we must self-isolate for 14 days on return. And, that is devastating and heartbreaking because this is truly prohibitive for most people to do without going insane. The world is not a safe place in 2020. In Guernsey, it is almost normal, yet people who break isolation rules can be fined thousands of pounds, and named and shamed in the local media. When the UK announced a second national lockdown to flatten the curve of the second wave of coronavirus infections and deaths, we went to the Fermain Valley to drink tea and eat cake. That discomfortable feeling of surviving in a time of global heartache and upheaval is very real, very raw and crushing on the best of worst days. I will call this the ‘Bezos effect.’ So, we fuel up on cake to emit and radiate positive love vibes across the universe! If this had happened a decade or so ago, I am not sure if I could have got through lockdown in the UK on a shitty salary, a shed load of debt, sky-high rent, shitty people in my life and barely enough leftover each month to buy a two-stick kitkat with. Upyourscorona!!!

The chocolate orange gluten free cake was delicious
Lovely wallpaper
A tearoom with a view

That day we all did tea and enough cake to feel okay with the fact that the rest of the world had gone to sh*t! All that was missing was the tourists.

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