We had a pretty wholesome time celebrating Stanley's second birthday. It is so nice having a small child around as it often means you wake up early (probably hangover free) and make the most of the whole day. We took the opportunity to go and visit the Bluebell Railway as his birthday treat as it was one of the things both myself and ben visited as children and it is so lovely to be able to re-visit and share childhood experiences we had with our own child. The day wasn't sunny as promised, but it was at least dry(ish) and we had such a fun time.
Stanley of course loved it, giant life sized 'Thomas' type trains....hey what is there not to love! The whole station is kept so well, thoughtful details like old posters which makes it all feel very real. There have a lovely little museum there too which we took a wander round. The only part I felt disappointed about was the restaurant. It looked really old fashioned british and not in a good way. Maybe like an early '90s Weatherspoons pub or something. I was surprised it hadn't been given a make-over in keeping with the rest of the place. I was hoping for an old fashioned tea room or cafe like in Brief Encounter, but alas no.
Our train called at two stations (where you can get off it you want to) then it takes about 20 minutes to move the front section of the train to take us back again. We saw lovely countryside, plenty of wildlife including a large herd of deer as well as some hunters out for, I assume, pheasants. We were frightfully british (and on a budget) and took our own packed lunch, egg sandwiches and leftover birthday cake no less washed down with a cup of tea. I felt like we had fallen straight out of the Railway Children or a Famous Five book, either way I couldn't have been happier!
Here's to a happy 2013 exploring what Sussex, and maybe further afield in Britain has to offer.