Destination Aldeburgh

Despite having his own sorrow to deal with, Hubbie did his upmost to alleviate my grief and to lighten my mood after we came back from NYC. ‘Why don’t we ask your mom to visit us? You haven’t seen her for a while, have you?’, he suggested during one weekend in early July. ‘Can we? Can she come to Suffolk with us too?’

The holiday was planned long before Mr.B’s sudden passing. We were very much looking forward to spending a coastal weekend with him because we knew in our heart that it would probably be the last holiday together. After Mr.B’s death, we fretted for days about cancelling the booking. Are we in a right frame of mind for going away and being on our own? Wouldn’t our soul searching be easier if we did it at home? Would we be able to keep our composure and to be kind to each other?

Our saviour stood next to Paddington Bear…

My mom arrived from Japan, enduring a 12 hours flight. We were so happy to see each other after having to content ourselves with chatting via Skype since last October.

Our destination Aldeburgh was 106 miles away and took us a little shy of three hours by car from London. We came off from A12 just after passing Farnham and took A1094 all the way to the little seaside town. Once we turned into High Street, we could see the thoroughfare was laden with charming shops with bunting and people in bright summer attire.

At the end of High Street, the tarmac disappeared and the road became a gravel path called Slaughden Rd. The path was uneven and time to time, we came across pot holes as large as a manhole cover. Half way down the dusty road, we found the path forked, one carried on straight on the bank and the other one descended toward River Alde.

We continued to move forward carefully and finally, we saw our true destination in the distance…

Yes, we were to stay at the Martello Tower!

A fort from the Napoleonic War era. One of the Landmark Trust’s properties for a holiday let.

None of us had ever stayed in a fort and we all were shaking with excitement!

A bridge over the fort was a bit creaky and it added the suspense in a good way.

I was given the honour of opening the door…

A key to the fort was left in a hidden safe which was looked after by the trust’s caretaker.

Strong winds were whipping us up and I became very worried if I dropped the key into the mort underneath. Even though there was no water, none of us fancied the prospect of having to wade through the thick undergrowth.

Open sesame!

The story of this amazing place and the fun we had shall be continued in my next post!

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

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