Mary Medlicott, Storyteller and Author - Storyworks


One of the wonderful things about being in Pembrokeshire (which is where we still are) is receiving visits from friends whom you feel as if you’ve known forever. This morning it was Liz and Eddie. Both are full of fun and Eddie is full of stories. He grew up round here and his eyes shine as he tells his tales. Naughty boys and what they used to get up to. Adult misadventures to do with crabs (for crabs can crawl out of the containers where you’ve put them while you go to fetch the van). All kinds of stuff – and it’s an enormous pleasure talking with someone with such a lively sense of humour.

It has been bright sunny weather until today. There’s a wonderful Welsh word, slabog, which means the kind of weather that is grey and damp and misty. Today is not quite slabog. But there’s no life in the sky. It’s just grey with no sign of cheering up. However, Pembrokeshire is Pembrokeshire and the weather is forever changing. Sometimes it feels like you’ve had five days in the course of one. So we’ll see what transpires. It’s mid-day as I write. There’s plenty of day left.

Another of the Pembrokeshire pleasures is the coast-line. During Liz and Eddie’s visit, we were talking about Pwllderi which we went to visit on his birthday on Wednesday. It’s a steep-sided cove with stunning views down along the coastline. It’s also the subject of a very well-known Welsh poem by a poet of the past called Dewi Emrys which recalls the local people he knew as a boy. It returns the old times to life and brings back the kinds of things that people used to do. I don’t know if the children of today get up to the same kinds of adventures as did children in the past.  I do know that when I was a child we had a wonderful sense of freedom, going off for the whole day with sandwiches and pieces of cake, swim-suits and spades.

Of course, today the phones that all children possess are in themselves quite a distraction. I think I feel very grateful that there wasn’t such a distraction when I was growing up. There was so much that was fun to do. Only this morning I was recalling the moment down in the sea at Goodwick beach when I realised I could swim. Feet off the ground. A couple of strokes. Still afloat. Hurray. And at that age, coldness of sea was never an issue. Off you’d go after school, bathing costume and towel in bag, and however chilly it was actually getting into the sea, it didn’t seem to matter. You’d soon acclimatise.

Ah well. Nowadays I’m not nearly so brave or so hardy. But I still love being down at the sea. And I still love thinking about it when I’m not. Maybe it gives a feeling of expansiveness that can last inside you even when you’re not near it.

PS: Top picture is the view down the coast at Pwyllderi and, yes, that’s Paul and me on his 76th birthday!

2 Responses to “Heartwarmers”

  1. Jean Edmiston Says:

    Dear Mary — it’s very slabog here today or dreich as we call it in Scotland — I love visiting Pembrokeshire with you in your blogs – SWIMMING — you’re braver than me — there’s several folk here go wild swimming in the reservoirs in the hills here — noooo – not for me — but to float in the sea — hmm — maybe and like you I remember days on the beach – NE coast near Aberdeen never mind the changeable weather or the chilly sea — we usually – with my family – built a drift wood fire and fried eggs and had a shivery piece/a buttery runny egg roll – when we came back from a dip in the North Sea – Enjoy the coast and your wonderful friends – Mary and Paul — with lots of love —- Jean xx

  2. Nina Says:

    It’s so lovely to read about your time in Pembrokshire Mary! Thank you for sharing! Lots of love to you! xxx Nina

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