It was a lazy start to the day and the damp ground outside didn't bode well for our road trip to Brighton which we'd planned weeks ahead to accommodate the commitments of my two other friends. Why England? You've been giving us a warm hug for weeks now!
With a bag packed, I was off first to uni where I met with the professor who supervises my summer project and then took the tube to the very end of the Northern line - Morden. Hopped into a car and off we sped down the A4 to the sea.
Looping around to find somewhere to park the car (always such a pain...) we finally headed to the pier and got a classic box from the chippy. The first thing you realise is that the sea gulls here are huge - legitimately massive and kinda scary too. They can smell food from a mile away and we luckily got through our box without being attacked!
The Brighton Palace Pier is crazy big with an arcade, restaurants and a roller coaster which half of is just on top of water. So... of course we had to try it. The actual car we sat in spun too as we went over and around! Buffeted and completely revitalised by the strong winds at the top of the pier, we returned back and made camp on the stony beach.
After that. we went to a gelateria in a cute little cobbled street just off the beach. They had loads of weird and cool flavours like Carrot Cake and Honey Nut Crunch. I went with Chocolate and Passionfruit - I know it sounds weird but it really did taste amazing!
Now was the real test of willpower - can I get into English water? The day wasn't as warm as I'd hoped it would be and not many were really doing it but I wasn't gonna miss out on an opportunity to get into the water. I knew "gradually" wouldn't work as my feet got wet so I just ran and the next crashing wave made sure I was wet, cold and completely ready to keep going! Ahh the feeling of soft sand and being thrown around by the strength of nature - I can't put it in words. I can, however, describe that gulping down sea water when you mistime a wave is not particularly pleasant. I don't know how long I spent inside but I turned around when I got the buoy and let the waves to take me back to shore.
I was pretty darn cold and felt numb when I got back so I dried myself as best I could, put on my shoes and just started running. For the first kilometer, I could hardly feel my legs and somehow was going super fast. I leveled it out and clocked in my day's run in another new city! Next up, we went cycling up and down the coast line on those tourist bikes you can rent out for a bit.
After the adrenaline surge died down, we realised we were famished and headed back into the centre of the city to find something to eat. We ended up in a Little Italy kinda street and I had a well portioned (and hopefully deserved after my physical excursions) plate of Tagliatelle al Salmone.
With salty hair and a filled tummy, we got back into the car and drove back into the sunset. An absolutely packed and enjoyable day!