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Following the aroma of coffee and fluffy scones Part 1

Following the aroma of coffee and fluffy scones Part 1


I simply love waking up on Saturday mornings , especially when the sun rays greet you from behind the window. This feeling of liberty, temporary slowing down of the daily hustle and bustle and release from duties make every moment feel so much more distinct. I am still stretching out in bed, but inside me the urge for travel has already begun stirring. I smile to myself at the thought of the places we are going to see, new experiences and the opportunity to take some unique and special pictures in the company of my close ones. The daily morning rituals have commenced. Swiftly like an army, we are getting ready to march out of the house. There is a scent of coffee in the air and you can almost taste the adrenaline of the coming adventure in all this morning bustle. Almost everything is ready now, I glance at my watch and feel slightly nervous, as if every second of this day was worth a pot of gold. We are headed to Dartmoor National Park today. Off we finally go, towards our first stop – Two Bridges. It is located in the heart of a wonderful wilderness, only about an hour’s drive away. Busy chatting, we hardly notice the commotion around the city as we pass by. Newton Abbot, the last bastion of civilization spreads before us, and then it’s just the park. This town, like some kind of monster, greets us with jammed roads, hampering our drive. Slowly and tediously we leap from one set of traffic lights to another and through intersections. Just a few more turns, a bit more impatience and we are on our way out of the city. I feel as light as if I just removed a backpack filled with stones from my shoulders.

We merrily hum the tunes coming at us from the car radio as we move along towards our destination. Behind the window, the images of beautiful villages are flashing by, located around this curved terrain that seems to be pushing us nicely along as we float on these green waves, closer and closer to our end point. At the park, the road gets even narrower and steeper. The landscape is simply breathtaking. Each turn unfolds new stretches of green grass and bushes only to then floor us with seemingly limitless moorlands spiked with ancient rock formations. When we reach the peak of a significant high ground, a huge valley spreads below us which envokes a feeling of magic and something special within me. It is a valley with countless hillocks and the whole view is crammed with bushes adorned with gold flowers, so typical of this area.

About 300 yards to the right, I notice a big herd of ponies, standing roadside at the parking, and – as we later found out – waiting for treats from travellers. We carefully enter the parking, steering away from the ponies. It is all quite pleasant, at one point most of the ponies trot towards us and surround our car. Instinctively, I want to see the animals from up close so I roll down my window, but to my surprise, the ponies immediately begin to push their manes and big bulging eyes into our car. As you can imagine, this nosy bunch of little horses then begins to munch on all the protruding car parts. They make the mirror their appetizer, then comes the door handle. Even the fact that the steering wheel is inside the car does not seem to bother the ponies and they make a good effort of trying to pinch it with their greedy, protruding teeth, in search for anything edible. I hastily roll up my window and the ponies, spotting another amateur of close encounters with animals pulling up, move on to greet him. We get out of the car and stretch our legs. I take a deep breath at the same time taking in the beauty of this place. What a view. I turn towards something invisible and shout out as if I wanted to summon the ghosts of the past to talk to me. From afar I can see some huge billowy clouds approaching, like an avalanche rolling down from a mountain top. The mixture of navy blue, orange and countless shades of grey battling for dominance with one another creates a one of a kind shape hanging just above the horizon. If only for a moment, the clouds leave a tiny gap to unfold some pristine baby blue sky and a strong ray of sunlight illuminates the ground. Moist grass sparkles with millions of sun reflexes. Then it was nothing but a pure spectacle put on for us by Mother Nature: we see a rainbow, so colorful and defined as if painted in a split-second by an artist hidden somewhere up in the clouds. Yes, this is my moment. I grab my camera and start snapping away. I already know that I have found what I had been looking for today, that I am going to paint a picture and immortalize this moment with my brush. A joyful feeling fills my heart. I smile and look around, still lost in my thought and trying to satiate my senses once again with this location and emotion. We move on. We get a little hungry now, but we remember that Two Bridges Hotel is not far away from here, they have a restaurant, a bar and a café.