A low-maintenence weekend break to Hull

Hull

A few weeks ago, at 30 weeks pregnant, I planned what would be the last cheeky getaway that Andrew and I will have before our little pudding arrives.  Having put every penny we earn into getting the house prepared and saving for a long 9 months of no salary, our budget was somewhat modest.  So a lavish last minute babymoon to the Bahamas was hardly on the cards.  Instead, we settled for Hull – a dockland town on the East Coast of England.

My main priority was to find somewhere with a pool where we could take a leisurely swim, a nice hotel room where we could relax with a movie, and a romantic place to dine that we may not necessarily be able to do as easily once the baby arrives.  So gleeful I was to discover a great hotel deal at the Village Hotel Hull, complete with indoor pool – and an unusual ‘under the sea’ restaurant in the heart of Hull’s aquarium, The Deep.  Sold!

I had booked the trip as a little surprise for Andrew.  I do that every now and then.  Sometimes I’ll tell him to pack an overnight bag and give him a rough direction in which to point the car – drip-feeding instructions as we get nearer our destination.

Upon our arrival there were three factors that put an instant dampener on the trip.  It was pouring with rain, Andrew wasn’t feeling so good, and my raging hormones had put me in a stonking mood.  Hmmm… perhaps we should tweak the itinerary somewhat…

Ordinarily when we visit a new city, we try to pack in a whole bunch of places to visit, things to see and do and take photographs of.  But when we arrived in Hull all I wanted to do was curl up in a ball.  Sight seeing and museum hopping in the city’s renowned museum quarter was now a write off – so how else were we going to fill our ‘last weekend of freedom’.

A cosy game of Scrabble…

During my research phase I had come across a quirky board game cafe, called The Boardroom.  Perfect! I directed Andrew to the cafe and was delighted to be greeted by a quiet, cosy cafe with casual vibes and racks of games to choose from.

We ordered a couple of hot chocolates, glad to be comforted from the rain and gloom.  I was excited by the choice of games, but given our current mood we settled on a good old classic game of Scrabble to get us started.

scrabble

After a little while we became a bit more adventurous and swapped our old school game for a collaborative board game (a concept completely new to the highly competitive me) called Pandemic.  It was great fun and gave us chance to chill out and unwind after the drive down…

Feeling a little more relaxed, we decided to head for the hotel.  The room was basic but very nice, with a view of the Humber Bridge (albeit a somewhat dismal sight due to the worsening weather), and a very comfy bed.  A quick familiarity with the room and we were ready for a swim.

hull-hotel

A sniffly Andrew headed straight for the sauna while I floated up and down the lengths on my back, welcoming the weightlessness on my weary bones.  Why had I not taken up swimming sooner?  It is bliss for those pesky pregnancy aches and pains!

Date Night ‘Under the Sea’

Evening soon came around and it felt nice to be getting all dressed up for a proper date night out somewhere brand new.  With the house decorating and all the rush getting prepared for the baby, date nights had seemed to be merging into night after night of TV dinners and cuddles on the couch.  So it was a nice change to be making the effort to indulge in a romantic meal out together.

And what a great setting…

The-Deep

On the banks of the Humber River, The Deep aquarium is one of the largest aquariums in the world, and as luck would have it, every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night, it is transformed into the unique Two Rivers Restaurant.

two-rivers

When we arrived we were escorted upstairs and encouraged to browse some of the tanks before heading to our table.  It was exciting to be there ‘after hours’.  Just the two of us, seemingly with the place to ourselves (we were a little early).  There was something quite romantic about wandering amongst the exhibitions… The tranquillity of the gliding sea-life instantly put us at ease.

jelly-fish

We enjoyed the rest of the evening dining in front of a vast floor-to-ceiling display and sipping mocktails, before heading back to the hotel for a movie and an early night.

cool-seas

A new day and some family synergy…

Having been too tired and fed up to enjoy any sight seeing the day before, we were encouraged to awaken to sun shining through the hotel window the next day.  So, suitably refreshed and fed by the on site Starbucks, we headed out to snap a few quick pics of the local area, before getting a closer look at the Humber Bridge.

From what we saw of the city, it had a great mix of old and new.  No wonder it’s been chosen as the Capital of Culture for 2017.  So I was actually a bit disappointed that we didn’t make it around the museums on this trip.  Maybe next time…

old-new

ships-in-hull

An interesting landmark of Hull is their range of white telephone boxes.. So naturally Andrew just had to ‘make a call’ to no-one…

telephone-box

 

Little did I know at the time of booking that my mum herself had visited Hull when she was pregnant with her first child, my older sister.  She had stood on the Humber Bridge at it’s grand opening in 1981.  So it only seemed fitting that I would get my own mother-in-waiting photo opp at the same spot.

bridge

bridge1

It was a strange feeling to be there, knowing that all those years ago, my  mum was in the exact same boat, at the exact same spot (ish).  Excited and nervous all at once, embarking on a new chapter in her life.  I got to thinking about how it will pan out for us.  How many more children we might have – how our family will grow over the years.  What ups and downs we will weather together.  If I will make as good a mum as she has been…

humber-bridge

On the precipice of this whole new world, with so much to ponder and so much to take in, I think the low-maintenance weekend away was exactly what we needed.  Nothing lavish.  No major itinerary and time schedule to adhere to.  Just a change of scenery, a cosy board game, a romantic dinner for two and a cosy movie tucked up in bed.

And that’s exactly what we got from Hull…

date-night

Hannah

 

 

One thought on “A low-maintenence weekend break to Hull

  1. Glad you could still make the best of your surprise trip!

    I love that you surprise Andrew with trips like that – I always say I’m going to be better at surprises and I never seem to be!

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