“Benthyg dros amser byr yw popeth a geir yn y byb hwn” – Everything you have is just borrowed for a short time

Finding oneself in a place where there is very little to do causes a serious travel conundrum for those used to a neurotically paced city life. Some people find moments like this a blissful sanctuary; an opportunity for some serious relaxation, or even self-reflection. Others of us secretly scan through our email with one eye open when we’re supposed to be meditating, and practice yoga but only so that we can pretend to be well rounded humans. We realise that the lack of an itinerary is going to be a challenge.

My trip to the Valleys of South Wales was for a Monday morning work meeting, else I confess it’s very unlikely that I would ever have visited. After an easy couple of hours drive with the radio too loud and slightly too much sugar and caffeine in my system, I was starting to get a bit concerned about the long stretch of ‘peaceful solitude’ (otherwise known as boredom) stretching out in front of me. Just at the moment that this thought flashed across my mind, a fluffy blur flashed across the road in front of my car. As if my silent prayer had been answered, my world was about to be invaded.

No collar and no vets open on a Sunday morning, Chester was the first thing I borrowed this weekend. All of a sudden the, ‘I have nothing to do’ morphed into, ‘We can go anywhere we want to’.

Chester was in charge of googling and chose a visit to the Silent Valley Nature reserve. I guess it has everything that a dog without a lead could be looking for.. a stream to splosh around in, plenty to sniff and a gate to keep us relatively contained.

And my gym shoes learned that life exists outdoors of a temperature regulated gym room or a locker, so that’s something. However, this is the kind of place that easily makes you feel a bit creeped out. It’s quiet, concealed and rarely visited. Definitely the kind of place that people might ‘lurk’ or ‘linger’. Sorry Silent Valley Nature Reserve.. but if it helps I didn’t write that on trip advisor.

Time to find civilisation, and sadly a vets to scan Chester for a microchip 😔

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