Almost seven years ago, while we were looking for properties in Italy but still living in Hamburg, I was still musing about what our property was going to be. Would it be mainly a pottery studio which also had rooms to rent? Or mainly a B&B which also had a pottery studio? I was going back and forth. One of my dearest friends Laurie, a person who has more creative talent than just about anyone I know, cut out an article from the British lifestyle magazine Country Living about a couple who had bought a beautiful old estate on the coast of Wales in Pembrokeshire, and had restored it into a bed and breakfast. The woman, Caro Flynn, was a potter and her husband, Eric, an actor. The article was such an inspiration to me that I put it in my treasure box for safe keeping, ever ready to pull out and look at when my self doubts would take over.
After having moved here and started the process of making this property what it would become, I fell back often on the article, wondering how the beautiful property, called Trevaccoon, was doing, and interested to know a little more about the potter herself.
I found the website for the B&B and I wrote Caro an email. She graciously wrote me back, and, with pauses in between, we have stayed in touch. I think of her often. Her husband, very sadly, passed away. She kept the B&B going but now has moved to another property, where she is also operating a B&B as well as a pottery studio.
Caro describes the new property in the following way:
"Bryn-y-mor" is a 1930's semi-detached cottage, surrounded by green fields, within the Pembrokeshire National Park. The "ensuite" rooms are light and airy with beautiful views over the sea to Ireland and across the peninsula to St Brides bay. The house is a short walk away from the coast path and 3 and a half miles from the small delightful cathedral city of St David's. It's within reach of all that Pembrokeshire has to offer, including, and not least, the magnificent sunsets!
I hope to get there. I would love to meet her and just hang out in her studio with her. Or have her come here, to do the same in my studio.
This past November, when Sally Watkins, Italy Agent Extraordinaire and her friend Kay came to visit me, we shared a dinner in my kitchen on Election night. It was a stormy evening and we warmed ourselves with copious amounts of Dolcetto and wild boar stew. We talked about so many things that evening, and eventually the conversation got around, of course to the election.
Kay mentioned that eight years prior, she and Sally had been at a B&B, on a very stormy Presidential Election night, talking with the owners, but that time, it was on the coast of Wales. The owner, the next morning, had informed them that the election had not been decided, that Florida would have to be recounted.
I just asked casually (I have no idea why), there wasn't a pottery studio at that B&B, was there?
Why, yes, said Kay, indeed there was.
It wasn't an actor and a potter who owned it, and it was on the coastline?
Sally and Kay looked at me and at eachother. Well, yes, what was her name? Caro! Yes, and her lovely husband, Eric!
I was pretty much speechless. I went into my studio and got my article from the 2002 Country Living Magazine which my friend Laurie had cut out for me. Yes, indeed, we were all talking about the same place, the same people.
After dinner was cleaned up, I came inside and emailed Caro. She was as astounded as we were. A lovely co-incidence, if in fact one believes in coincidences. I personally do not. I think that there was a lovely, soft thread which started with my friend Laurie and flowed through to that dinner with Sally and Kay, with Caro being the connective energy.
By the way, you can contact Caro at firstname.lastname@example.org