This week I consulted the bucket list. It’s been an ambition of mine to stay in a Shepherds hut for a while and since it was my birthday last week, I splashed out for my girlfriend, puppy and I to stay here:
(I still didn’t buy a map though!)
Obviously this is a tin hut and the ‘Beast From The East’ made a resurgence in the form of the, creatively named, ‘Mini Beast’ this weekend. However this had nothing on the wood-burner that this bad boy was kitted out with – I had to open the window because I was so toasty – take that Siberia! (sorry global warming).
The main issue we had was the world outside of the Shepherds Hut, it just wasn’t that appealing to the puppy – but it’s character building to get out of your comfort zone so we dragged him out for a walk anyway, from Middleton down to the seafront at Dunwich (almost).
The walk was really pretty, kind of bleak and (again) so flat! I accidentally booked us in to stay about ten miles away from Orford (last week) and, unbelievably, next to a village called Yoxford!!! I’ve done some extra research for next weekend and I’m going nowhere near Suffolk or anywhere O*ford related!!
On the plus side, the landscape got more and more lovely the further we walked – this freshly hacked-down corn field was a personal highlight.
The corn still tasted good too (kidding).
Carrying on from these desecrated husks, I had to sweep up the puppy in my arms when we came to some large puddles – he doesn’t do water very well, a rogue wave on Brighton beach saw to that last November. I’ll be working on that once it gets a bit warmer.
But for now – look at his little face!
Shortly after this, the wind really picked up and I caved in at the sight of the puppy’s little legs shivering like brittle chicken thighs so I did the unthinkable… Turned back before we had reached the Sea!
That evening we stopped in for dinner at the ‘Bell Inn’ in Middleton – it was OK – good fish and chips and only 5 minutes walk from the hut, which you can book HERE. Neill, the host, was fantastic. He loved the puppy and left us with a generous breakfast basket that saw us through the weekend and was topped off with what might be the best flapjacks I have ever had – everything was well thought out and we were sad to fold away the bed for the last time on Sunday.
Obviously we couldn’t leave without seeing the sea, so we drove (cheated) our way down to Dunwich, through Westleton – which has not one, but two second hand book shops and a vinyl store, as well as maybe five houses – bizarre.
The puppy didn’t last long on the beach so my wonderful girlfriend packed him back into the car and gave me five minutes, which I used to stand facing out to the north sea while the ‘mini beast’ hammered me with fresh, fresh air. After filling my lungs, I creaked my frozen fingers back around the cars steering wheel and we set off for home.
Rosy cheeked and smug!