This past week I went up to Yorkshire to visit family and go to Whitby folk festival. On my way back, I stayed in York and managed to catch York Unleashed, York’s very own comicon. It’s been a fantastic little vacation.

The holiday started off with getting on a train from London to Hull.

This was especially fun because my carriage was the only one where the aircon broke. And the train was late by 40 minutes. But otherwise it was a pleasant trip which I mostly slept through.

When I arrived in Hull, I had a nice quiet night catching up with my family there. We ordered a Chinese take-away and watched the Great British Bake Off. For those of you who don’t know, it’s one of the most popular shows out right now.

Thursday was the big trip to Whitby. Whitby is a beautiful seaside town in Yorkshire. It has the most beautiful, quirky homes and I always feel like there should be a kid’s story book based there.

Whitby Folk Festival isn’t something most people would associate with me. It’s actually quite fun though. More of course if you’re actually into folk music, or if you can at least play an instrument.

The draw of the festival for me is how it’s a big family event. Families come back every year, kids, teens, grandparents. You also get to do seaside things, like build a sandcastle or go crab fishing. Last year I got a temporary tattoo. So you get all the fun of a normal seaside holiday, but also extra fun things like music and dancing.

In the daytime I played in the arcades. I’d also go to the beach. We’d all get some lunch together, either at a fish ‘n’ chip shop or a nice cafe. We’d all then go back to our hotel rooms, and rest for a bit. Later on in the evening we’d go to one of the places that had live music and dancing.

I ended up having amazing luck at the arcade, winning two small plushies which I gave to a niece and nephew. I also won a big spiderman plushie, and whilst the kids wanted him, I decided to keep him for myself. He now lives on my bed.

 

The events at Whitby Folk Festival are really fun. You can see morris dancers, musicians jamming together and of course a lot of ceilidh dancing. Both nights that I stayed I made sure to to the big dances. On Friday night, everyone goes as it’s the last night of the festival. There’s often really big performances put on.

I have to admit, Whitby Folk Festival was the last place I thought I would see Batman and the Joker fighting it out. You can’t see so well on the video, but the sword dance they do involves both partners holding onto the sword and not letting go at any point. The flips they whilst being attached to each other by sword are very impressive.

On Saturday, I spent the morning enjoying the last of the seaside, before catching a bus to York. The bus journey takes 2.5 hours, but you don’t get bored because it has some of the best scenery ever. You go along the Yorkshire Moors, which is technically a national park.

All the hills are purple at the moment because they are covered in heather. The hills span out for miles and miles, with only a few roads to dissect them. This might be common in America where there is a lot of open space, but in England, it’s not a view many people would ever see.

You pass a lot of sheep and cows and the occasional horse or two. My route on the bus is very convoluted because it has to stop in lots of villages. I even went through Goathland village which has a fully functional steam train station. I didn’t get to see a steam train go by, but the station was still absolutely beautiful.

When I finally got back to York, it was raining. The house where my foster family lives was bustling though. It’s been a long time since all four children have been back together at the same time. We have this tradition where we all make a course of a meal, and we eat the big meal to celebrate. The kitchen obviously gets very busy with up to 6 people trying to cook stuff in it, however it makes us feel very close (literally!) and it’s a great way to catch up.

My two foster sisters made a pea and mint soup with parmesan cheese croutons. My foster mum and dad made beef wellington with roasted vegetables and gravy. I made a baked Alaska for dessert. The base was a chocolate cake, then a thin layer of chocolate icing. I then put a layer of fresh raspberries. A dome of clotted cream icecream went on top, and everything was covered with a meringue. I served it with a white chocolate, and a milk chocolate sauce. Because of the nature of the dessert, I was unable to take pictures of it.

Finally we finished the evening with some card games and also a round of the boardgame “Codenames” – I went to bed feeling very full, very tired and very happy.

On Sunday, I played a round of Pandemic with my foster family before heading out to see the York Unleashed comicon before catching the train back home. Growing up in York, it’s a small city. I never thought it would get it’s own comicon.

 

Yet when arrived at 1pm, there was still a large queue. It was completely packed inside. So many people were dressed up, and I can safely say it was success for everyone. I managed to snag some pretty cool merchandise, and really enjoyed myself.

I slept for most of the train home. It’s nice to be back home now, but I think part of me will always consider Yorkshire to be my true home. Even if I’m a big city London girl most of the time, my heart is in the North.