GUEST POST from David: UK Vacation, Sept. 2022 – Day 6

Sunday 24th September 2022

Had a very nice dinner in the Red Kite last night. They really are good and the staff is excellent too. Makes all the difference.

We wandered north a little towards Raglan and Abergavenny in Monmouthshire. All places I had been to before. Abergavenny was really busy with sort of fanfare and attractions there, so we spotted past and gave that a miss. I was looking for a particular place that we found last time we were here and was determined to find it. I had looked as came past the other day in the opposite direction but couldn’t find it. I tried a different tack this time and as we were headed into Brecon again I swung off to the left for a little village called Talybont. I had been here for back in the day a few times. As we headed into the village I recognized a sharp little turn to the left and swung into it – and there it was: The Brecon and Abergavenny Canal. I knew it was there.

The canal crossed the road, or the road crossed the canal, via a steep little swing and lift type bridge. On the road we went up and over the bridge and immediately on the left was a little pull in with room for one car. I remembered it exactly from 24 years ago. I quickly swung into the place and abandoned the car for the canal. It was exactly as I had remembered it and lo and behold there was a narrowboat approaching that wanted to “cross the road” so to speak. The canal guy’s wife, walked along to a  little grey box and started playing with some knobs and buttons. Then a piercing alarm sounded and the barriers on the road came down and stopped the traffic – of which there was none at that time. Then the road split in two and each side rose up into the air leaving the narrowboat with free passage along the canal and past the village of Talybont. We were lucky to be there to see that at this time. Then the lady had to fiddle with the buttons again and the bridge sides lowered again to form the bridge across the canal for traffic to pass. I think there was just one car there. After the bridge had closed again, the lady had to run down to the tow-path to catch up to her husband who was on his way up the canal to the next lock. That’ll keep her fit, right? We saw her jump on and off they went.

We carried on up this road in the same direction as I knew where it was going. It was heading for Dewlaps a suburb of Merthyr Tydfil where I used to live many moons ago. With the advent of tons of ramblers, hikers and walkers, the area had changed quite a lot and there were people rambling all over the place, on the roads and paths and cross-country. It had changed dramatically in the past 20 -odd years from a narrow, open mountain road, to a road with lots of trees and lodges and hostels etc., with bloody ramblers all over the place. Who’d have thunk it. 20-odd years is obviously a long time – even out in the county. Anyway, we mosied on heading for Merthyr Tydfil and on down the A470 to Caerphilly and back to the hotel. We’d seen quite a bit that day and it capped off what we had hoped to see in Wales. It was time to head out of Wales tomorrow.

This has been part 6 of a series of posts highlighting the trip of a British ex-pat in the US when he returns to the UK for a vacation. He shares the experiences with us here on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays for the next few weeks. I hope you will enjoy reading them as much as I have, and seeing the areas he (and his lovely wife) visit, through my friend David’s eyes. ~ Sherry

Need to catch up on David’s story? Day 1 ~ Day 2 ~ Day 3 ~ Day 4 ~ Day 5


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