Cardiff, United Kingdom
It was a very quiet final day in Cardiff.
The day stared very energetically – I had a big sleep-in, Perry enjoyed a mid-morning nap, a whole lot of nothing happened until about lunchtime, when we dragged ourselves outdoors and checked out central Cardiff itself. We took a cab, for the princely sum of £5 – which would’ve worked out cheaper and easier that leaving our carpark here, paying for parking in town, then paying for parking again back at our apartment.
We found our way to Cardiff Central Market – reminiscent of the Queen Vic markets in Melbourne. It’s about 120 years old, and the poor thing is starting to show it age a bit, but still has a degree of that Victorian charm. It was also the place we finally sampled some Welshcakes. I’m sure any Welsh person would hate me for saying it but they’re basically flat scones with dried fruit, fried instead of baked. Still very tasty though.
St David’s was next on the agenda, or rather, ‘Dewi Sant’ – it’s good to see that there is bilingual signage on pretty much everything. I did a quick bit of research (OK, I read on Wikipedia article) and apparently 73% of the Welsh population have no knowledge of the language. But, since 2000, Welsh has been a mandatory subject in Welsh schools, so all being well that number will increase in the years to come. St. David’s is a huge shopping centre, we had a good wander around and found a very cool shop called Tiger. It’s like an Ikea of small things – including the very Ikea-esque concept of only being able to walk one path through the whole shop. We still somehow managed not to buy anything though. Have a look at http://www.tigerstores.co.uk
In the last few days we’ve watched the first episode of Torchwood, and an early episode of the ‘new’ Dr Who, which were set in Cardiff. From this we’ve learnt that the building we’re staying in didn’t even exist 9 years ago, it was a carpark in Torchwood. It’s still fun seeing bits of Cardiff in the show, just so we can point and say “Been there!”
But as far as Cardiff goes, that’s it for us. We’re leaving at half-past-ridiculous in the morning to make absolutely sure we don’t miss out 1:20PM flight to Sweden. We’ve been warned to traffic we be pretty horrendous as we pass near Bristol, and of course it’s to be expected at Heathrow. So, we’re not leaving anything to chance, even it does mean getting up an unreasonable hour. It’s all good, we can nap on the plane.
So this was out last full day in Cardiff, and our last full day in the UK. The horrible realisation that the holiday is drawing to close, is starting to sink in. But I’m doing my best to ignore it – still have a few more days and one country left to explore. Let’s do that then!