Rosie at St Audries bay week

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    St Audries Bay TV week , May 2012

    This event takes place twice a year in May and September, just a few miles north of Watchet in Somerset, as it was almost a 400 mile drive I had decided that I would not be able to go in September as well, To break the journey I stayed at Ironbridge over the week end and visited a few places in that area which I had wanted to see for years. On the Monday morning 7 May I continued on to St Audries bay, I had been looking forward to this week for months, on arrival I booked into the single chalet with half board I had opted for, nothing fancy but OK – a bit on the small side for the amount of luggage I took!!  But fine as long as I kept it tidy, Showered and changed into skirt and top, I went off to explore the facilities which are very good, and to meet some of the other girls (and a few Boys). a few of the girls had their wives with them, the first thing that struck me was some of the way out outfits on show, some outrageous, but none were indecent.

         Dinner was served at 18.00 hrs. and the food was to a high standard, this was the time when we really started to get to know each other, so many new faces and names I think we all had a job trying to remember names, after dinner  there was a short bingo session (not my cup of tea) before the disco started at 21.00 hrs. again not my thing but there were plenty of other comfortable places to go and just chat over a drink, this is when I first met Marlene a lovely RG lady who gave me a lot of encouragement and advice over the week, she asked me if I was interested in the coach trip organised for the Wednesday – I had already decided not to go but when I found that it was just a mini bus and she told me the details I changed my mind and booked.

         The Tuesday was spent quietly getting to know one another, and making lots of new friends, one very experienced girl I was chatting to about trying to be convincing and blending in told me that I was doing well and actually looked like a girl, which again boosted my confidence and looking at some of the girls and their dress sense I could see that I was quite a bit more convincing than some.  There was also a table top sale where I bought a couple of bracelets, and the “newbies get together” complete with wine. After dinner they held the first round of “play your cards right” followed by cabaret and disco.

          The coach trip left at 11.30 on Wednesday  and firstly headed for sea life aquarium at  Weston super mare, when  we arrived on the sea front there was quite a cold wind coming in from the sea so there were not that many people about which I was quite pleased about as this was just my second time out among “joe public” there were a few people in the aquarium  but It almost felt as if we were un noticed with no problems at all which boosted my confidence, We then went back to Watchet where the Esplanade club opened especially for us and put on a lovely buffet meal—far more than we could eat and very high standard, being on the harbour side we were able to go out and mingle with the public and view the boats in the marina , but with a safe “bolt hole” in the club in case of trouble, but we enjoyed our time there without incident, a further boost to my confidence.

            On Thursday there was among other things a pool competition which I entered out of a fit of daftness, having never played pool before (I had played a little snooker about 50 years ago) needless to say I was knocked out in the first round – best of 3 games – 1st game I was whitewashed- second game I did manage to pocket 2 balls--- progress of sorts. By this time it was near lunch time and as I had some food in the car and a flask of coffee I took off for Watchet on my own and went to the harbour where we had been the day before, , parked the car as close to the ticket machine as possible, took a deep breath and went and bought a ticket, I then moved as close to the harbour as possible, parked up and had a light lunch while watching passers-by, and especially observing  what women were wearing, as there was a cool breeze in from the sea most were wearing coats. I had a light weight coat in the car so put this on in order to “blend in” as far as possible, took a deep breath and set off with my bag over my shoulder, I walked right across the harbour front and into the town without incident and with growing confidence, as I needed some ciggies I looked for a shop which was not too busy and a little way on came to the post office/ gift shop, I stood outside for a few moments, fished my purse out of my bag and went boldly in, the lady behind the counter never batted an eyelid when I asked- very quietly in my best (HA HA ) girly voice asked for 40 Benson & hedges, paid for them , collected my change and strolled out, on my way back to the car I deliberately waked down the side of the street where there were quite a few people about—no problem , as I walked back across the harbour I could hear a steam train of the west Somerset railway approaching so when I got back to the car (the car park is alongside the railway station) I got the camera out and stood by the car waiting for the train to arrive, just then an oldish man came to his car parked 2 spaces away from me and let his dog out, dog immediately came towards me , its owner tried to call it back saying “come here now don’t go bothering the lady” dog took no notice and came up to me tail wagging,  so I stroked its ear, it then went back to its owner and he said to it “ yes she was being nice to you” I am quite convinced that he was being genuine and had not read me--- needless to say I was more than a little pleased . The train arrived and I got my photos, by which time it was time to head back, basking in the buzz of my first real time out on my own. That evening was the third and final round of play your cards right, in another fit of daftness I bought a ticket and to my amazement my number was called as the second contestant, My first card was a queen so I went lower and turned up a 2 – so I went higher – and turned up another 2 – that put an end to my moment of glory!!  After this was the Miss St Audries Bay competition – which I did not enter! – but was won by Roslyn, one of the girls I had become friends with, she was wearing a lovely lime green evening dress and was a well-deserved winner, another disco rounded the evening off.

          Friday saw me itching to go out again, as I had been advised that Minehead was a safe place to go to, off I went wearing my green suite and as there was a cold wind again I put on my heavier camel coat, I was able to park in the main street and set off for a walk, within 40 yards I bumped into Steph, one of the other girls I had met, we had a chat and she told me that she was going to the cider farm which is TV friendly, for a coffee, so I said that once I had my walk I would catch her up at the farm, off I went to the end of the street – about 500 yards, crossed over and started up the other side, about ¾ way back to the car IT happened, I suddenly felt my skirt which has an elasticated waist sliding down over my hips OOOOPs –a few seconds of panic , - I put my hand into my coat pocket and was just in time to grab the waistband of said skirt and pull it back a bit before it hit the ground , I was then able to get slowly back to the car and get in, fortunately I had my emergency sewing kit in the car which contained some safety pins ( a girl’s best friend at a time like this) I sat in the car and discreetly pinned my skirt into position. I was disappointed at not completing my walk so got back out and went a further 50 or 60 yards up the street and back, but was not 100% sure of my pin up job, so decided to skip the cider farm and head for a quiet place where I could make a better job of securing the offending garment . I headed up into the hills on a quiet back road and found the perfect place to effect repairs and have some lunch from my ration box. This done there was plenty of time left so I headed back towards Watchet, on the way I came across a forestry commission car park which was empty – a perfect place to test the security of my skirt—a stroll round the car park a few times put my mind at rest, so on to Watchet, Parked up and made for the harbour again and had another walk but this time there was a party of school kids( dangerous animals so I am told)at the far end of the harbour so I turned back and had a walk along the railway station platform instead, as I was now satisfied that the skirt incident had not un-nerved me I made my way back to St Audries. That evening was largely taken up with “curtain Call” which was a 2 hour show put on by some of the girls, considering that this is done at short notice it was mostly very good.

         Saturday saw a few of us heading for the cider farm which I had missed out on the day before, as it was in a very sheltered location the cold wind did not find us and it turned out to be the warmest day of the week, so we enjoyed a coffee and scone in the sunshine, that evening was the Gala dinner followed by prize giving and cabaret . Sunday was a bit sad and quite a few tears were shed as girls departed for home, I had booked to stay on for another 4 days to explore the area more (in Drab) and visit the railway but on the Monday I had a very special trip to make – to Bickleigh Mill near Tiverton to meet the one and only Carol – we had a lovely couple of hours chat and coffee – she really is a super lady – but that is another story.

         Did I say I could not go again in September --- I only thought that before I went, so guess what – I’m booked for September and next May – roll on September.