Hello and Welcome to the 66th issue of TheBAY Magazine

 

This year is whizzing by at a rate of knots – we have been getting the first of our Christmas adverts which is always a bit of a shock when you’re still wearing strappy sandals. We’ve only got two more issues before the end of the year!

 

Booker’s dozen

The fact that we have had a miserably wet summer has all but passed Sarla Langdon by as she has been cooped up with her nose in a book for most of the month, ploughing through the Man Booker Longlist. This year all the publishers have got their act together and send out the titles for review – last year several arrived too late – but this time she has only written reviews of those that she considers to be worthy of the prize. I admire and somehow envy her ability to put everything else aside and read thirteen books in one month. The shortlist will be announced on 15 September with the winner of the £50,000 prize declared on 13 October, when we’ll find out if the judges agree with her.

 

Hidden gems

John Ashley AKA The Mud Magnet hasn’t let us down this month with his walk around Gower. Probably because of all the rain that we’ve had in recent weeks, even normally dry footpaths have turned into swamps. John’s walk around two local nature reserves may not be particularly long, but they do explore some lesser known areas of Gower.

 

Autumn colour

Caroline Thomas of the Slade Garden Company has some wonderful ideas for autumnal planting in her article this month. If you’ve ever despaired of the lack of colour in your garden once the summer bedding has faded, read her article on page 39 and next year everything could be different. Fulke Andel is starting to plan for his next year in the garden, and I’m pleased that he too prefers to pore over a catalogue rather than over a computer screen. It’s almost impossible for me to imagine a world without printed matter – I engage with a magazine or brochure – it’s tactile and holds my attention far longer than a screen shot. But to misquote the late Mandy Rice-Davies, she would say that wouldn’t she!

 

Scream if you wanna go faster

Liam Bird and his lovely wife Becky suggested a meet-up in Glasbury-on-Wye to admire the Alfa Romeo that Liam was reviewing for this month. After a fab lunch on the banks of the river, Liam took me on a quick jaunt to nearby Hay-on-Wye and back. I say quick – I’m not sure how fast we went, as being so close to the ground does skew your perception of speed. It’s a terrific car and attracted many admiring glances but I think I’d prefer being a little higher off the ground when travelling on a motorway.

 

Art for art’s sake

David Roe of the Attic Gallery in Swansea Marina joins us this month to give his advice on buying art for your home. Too often it seems, we put a lot of thought and care into our living space, spending a lot of money on furniture and carpets only to spoil the overall effect by putting an old print onto the wall. Original art is affordable to everyone with the Collector Plan run by the Welsh Arts Council, where the cost of purchase can be spread over 12 months with an interest-free loan.

 

Surf Snowdonia

Chris ‘Guts’ Griffiths, his son Connor and surf photographer Paul Gill went on day trip to Snowdonia to sample the new wave garden. It was a bit of a marathon 200 mile round trip purely on A roads, but from his account of the day it was worthwhile. You can watch a video of their day at the world’s first commercial artificial surfing lagoon at https://vimeo.com/137132943.

 

That’s all for now, have a great September and we’ll be back next month.