Bright Light City Gonna Set My Soul — Viva Scarborough?

Yesterday was a day of two halves. The first was spent in Flamborough, a teeny village in the North of Yorkshire marked by a stretch of white, rugged cliffs. This part of the day was filled with fresh air, lunch, the sound of the sea and sand between my toes. Oh and rust, lots and lots of rust.

Which offered photo ops galore.

A very old, rusty tractor on top of a cliff
Standing next to a rusty tractor in a striped jacket.
Sitting in a rusty tractor in Flamborough
Close up of front of rusty tractor.
Blurred shot of me in rusty tractor
Sign on tractor which says track marshall
Are Andrew and I the only people on the planet who see a very old, very rusty tractor, battered boats and rusty pulleys and immediately want to start taking pics?

Very old boats on Flamborough beach
Me in the distance
close up of rusty pulley
Side of a cliff in Flamborough
Sun through the cliffs.
My feet buried in the sand.
The back of the old boats on Flamborough beach.
Having explored as much of Flamborough as my ridiculously inadequate ballerina pumps would allow (what can I say, I wasn’t expecting so much rockiness), we were left with a hefty chunk of day. So I did what any levelheaded person with sound judgement would do – I tapped ‘places to visit near me’ into Gertie.

Maybe I should explain that Gertie is our SatNav which is manufactured by Garmin. I didn’t kidnap some random person named Gertrude and start tapping morse code onto her head. Although Gertie is so unreliable, I would probably get better directions if I did. If your name is Gertrude be afraid, be very afraid! 🙂

Anywho, one of the suggestions that eventually popped up on Gertie’s screen was ‘Scarborough’. Now I did have many preconceptions of Scarborough; a bit of a brash, dirty, arcade ridden, shabby (and not in a chic way), retirement area and not really my cup of tea. But, being ever openminded and aware of the regeneration that has gone on in this 18th century spa town, I decided to give a whirl.

After exploring the seafront, and taking a ride on the cliff tram for a quick nosey around the shops, I still stand by the majority of my preconceptions. It is certainly an in-your-face, kiss-me-quick seafront bursting with shops selling all the usual seaside fayre. And arcades – many, many arcades.

Colourful fishing nets at Scarborough

And it did indeed seem to be where half the population go to retire. Judging by the sea of white and grey hair that filled the pavements to bursting, most of them had decided to retire yesterday and go for a celebratory jaunt to the seafront. Not that I’m saying there is anything wrong with gaggles of grannies (do grannies gaggle?), far from it. Some of the most interesting and well-loved people in my life are well past retirement age.

There were two preconceptions that I saw either little or no evidence of:

Shabbiness – The areas that I visited were not particularly shabby, in fact it seemed as if a whole chunk of the seafront had been given a facelift. Granted, part of it looked like a movie star way passed her prime trying to rock the ‘Baby Spice’ look – but on the whole, it wasn’t bad.
Dirt – Although like many large towns there is room for improvement, there wasn’t as much obvious dirt as I had anticipated.

I also noticed a lot of nice looking eateries in which to sit and watch the world (and yesterday it did seem like the whole world) go by.

So did Scarborough set my soul on fire? Er, sorry good people of Scarborough, but I left with a slight feeling of relief. You see I am a sometimes introvert, which meant that all those bright lights, crowds, noise and jostle just left me feeling exhausted. I think, if it wasn’t such a drive, I would probably return and explore the quieter areas of the town. But, for now, I think I’ll stick to rocky coastlines and rusty tractors.

Close up of tractor tyres
And these random guys that we spotted on the way home.

Three massive bears made out of straw bales to advertise Staxtonbury.



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