Ticket to Ryde

The people who live on the Isle of Wight claim this famous Beatles song isn’t actually meant to be Ticket to Ride. They claim it is actually Ticket to Ryde, as in The Beatles were actually singing about one of the biggest places there, where most ships come on the island. Whilst McCartney said the title referred to “a British Railways ticket to the town of Ryde on the Isle of Wight”, John Lennon said it described cards indicating a clean bill of health carried by Hamburg prostitutes in the 1960s. You can take your pick of the meanings.

My mum and I figured out that it had been six years since I last had a ticket to Ryde – my family all went in Easter, but the lack of wifi and the fact my assignment required a face-to-face interview meant I couldn’t go. So this was my first visit in a while.

Whilst we were blessed with the temperamental side of the English weather, and forced home a day early because of this, we still managed to cram in a fair bit of adventure. Here’s a little taste of what we got up to:

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Future house goals

Osborne House was my highlight of the holiday. If you see my second France post, you’ll see that I’m into my historic places. This house was especially built for Queen Victoria, who spent a lot of time there, and spent her dying days there. Her surprising attachment to Indian culture was evident in the Durbar wing, and was breathtaking in intricacy and character. But all of it was, really. Even the V and A sculpted into the ceiling just showed it was specially made, and specially loved, by the late Queen. There was even a little cottage which Prince Albert had built for the children, which they grew vegetables outside of – selling their fruitations to the Prince was how they earned their pocket money! Grey clouds could not darken the beauty of this English Heritage wonder.

Photo credit: 6-year-old sister Amy

I had some unfinished history with Black Gang Chine, an amusement park (of sorts). When I went when I was a kid, some boys locked me in one of the dungeons there, and I cried as I was unable to get out. Arriving with a fresh set of adult eyes to the place was quite a different experience. This place is close to celebrating its 177th anniversary, and boy does it show. It’s pretty much, some geniuses in the Victoria era thought, “Hmm, what does children like? Pirates, mermaids, nursery rhymes, cowboys and fairies.” Hence, there’s a section for all of those things. There’s only one rollercoaster as well, and you’re lucky if that works as it is usually out of order. Fun for the kids, not so much fun for anyone else at all. It certainly wasn’t the big intimidating place I thought it was… But hey, on the brightside, there was free wifi.

Pretty shot of Black Gang Chine ft. random gardener

On the last day of the holiday, we headed down to the beach, because the kids wanted to build sandcastles. We clubbed together and made one big one, that was taken away by choppy waters approximately five minutes later. The air was so full of sea, you could genuinely taste salt on your fingers. The coast was a refreshing, scenic walk on the way there, and the cove we arrived at was quaint. The way back? It was a storm. Howling winds, pouring rain. Lovely. Luckily the car wasn’t too far away, so we got dried off quickly. National Express by The Divine Comedy blared out as we sped off to the pub. I had a gorgeous lasagna, which was the perfect way to warm up and end the day.

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I did take a picture of the sandcastle but it’s too blurry

My trip to the island has been short but sweet, but I have enjoyed it thoroughly. This place always reminds me of being a kid again, however now I’m old enough to appreciate the scenery and soak in the quiet atmosphere, I feel like I enjoyed it in a bigger and better way.

I seem to be chasing the sea this summer, don’t I? I hope you aren’t feeling seasick… As one of next travel posts will be in another beachy location!

See you soon.

Here’s a selection of tunes that sum up my trip, and that blared in the car as we travelled across the island:

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6 thoughts on “Ticket to Ryde

  1. Dashin' Ash says:

    Full disclosure: I’ve never been anywhere in Europe, let alone England. But you’ve described this lovely little area just as I imagined every place worth visiting in the UK to be like. With the historical Osborne House, combined with a visit to the salty sea, and The Beatles trivia sprinkled in amongst some amazing photos, I’m really happy to have the privilege of reading your post today.

  2. charcherre says:

    Oh gosh, that story about being locked in the dungeon as a kid sounds terrible! I’m glad you were able to return as an adult and make some better memories in that area. (Also, that photo of the storm is absolutely breathtaking, what a fantastic shot!)

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