I've been many times before so I was well into my comfort zone: roads, shops, cafés and campsite were all familiar. I usually camp but, this time, I hired a small caravan in my favourite site - a place that's been planted with many apple trees and been the worthy recipient of a conservation award several years running.
The caravan made a great base camp and had a gas fire for chilly evenings - bliss! We ate out, bought picnics, and started each day with a swim in the campsite (indoor) pool before heading out over the island in warm breezes and sunshine.
|Sunny day at Freshwater Bay|
The timing of my island jaunt was planned to coincide with an annual vintage fair that I discovered, quite by accident, several years ago. At that time, I had a car full of camping gear, not a square inch to spare, and, frustratingly, came across vintage suitcases and wonderful old gardening tools, all reasonably priced. I had my fingers crossed that the fair would still be happening this year and so we ventured down to Old Winkle Street (a suitably named venue, if ever there was) in Calbourne on the Bank Holiday Monday. Hooray! the fair was there; sadly, it had become a glorified car boot sale. Undeterred, I whizzed round while my son waited in the car - with his ipod, naturally.
This year the gardening tools were there, over- oiled and overpriced: old fork, £30! It makes you think, doesn't it? Not what I had in mind at all and, although they had some lovely old wooden dibbers, I came away without tools.
|Vintage gardening tools|