Brizzle Shizzle

Fog that makes you wonder if you are the only people left on earth, two people in the warm bubble of a hatchback as the rest of the world recedes into murk. Dark fingers of naked winter trees reaching out to you through the mist. Then suddenly you burst free into glorious sunshine and the world is back where it should be.

We are heading to Bristol. I am both delighted and proud that Betsy received uni offers from both her top choices, and now she has to decide between them. I liked Manchester on our visits, but I am totally Team Bristol (though trying to ensure I don’t pressure her- probably failing, but trying!). I know Bristol, I like that it is a couple of hours away as opposed to six. Far enough for independence, close enough for mercy dashes or trips home, a city offering so much but with a West Country sensibility that is familiar and comforting.

First stop, Cabot Circus, to assure her that her teenage need for far better shops than a small county town can offer is fully catered for. A visit to the Harvey Nichols make-up department where she was preened over by a friendly and professional assistant, and was able to purchase some much desired Nars tinted moisturiser at a higher value than my entire make-up collection. Then similar at a department store selling Mac and Urban Decay. One happy girl clutching the bags Tumblr dreams are made of.


MAC shopping bag


Then a wander to Stokes Croft and the lower reaches of the Gloucester Road for a feel of real Bristol. The bits she might actually live in, or at least similar. I love the political graffiti – where but Bristol would you find Noam Chomsky quotes in the underpass? We Banksy spotted, and loved the vibrant art covering virtually every wall.


banksy mild mild west

painted bricks

photo 2 (41)


We loved the array of funky and relaxed looking cafes and bars, over spilling with people laughing and chatting over Sunday lunches and late breakfasts. We were getting hungry too, then we saw a sign.


live and eat pie


Pie it is then. Pieminister pie. And oh such good pie, accompanied by sweet potato fries sent from Heaven itself.


pie and chips

live & eat pie


Stuffed with delicious food I decided it was time to head away from the urban beauty and find the water. Ambling along the canal, basking in the warm glow of a perfect sunset. Just so, so pretty – Bristol is a place of such contrasting charms. I am almost convinced to move here myself! But the sun is going down and we have a long drive, so we wander with aching limbs after covering several miles in foot, back to the car and back to Dorset.



bristol sunset


Navy blue skies fading through to pastel, marbled with grey clouds. Dip dyed with an amber streak along the crest of the horizon – silhouetted with the blackest hills. Truly stunning, impossible to do justice to with a snap from a moving car.


night driving


Natures best accompanied by the sounds of the Top 40 countdown on Radio 1. A thing I haven’t listened to in a decade or more, and a perfect opportunity for an old lady diatribe about the paucity of the fare on offer. We listened all the way down to within the top 10, and only a handful of songs had anything good about them at all – modern music eh?! (Grumbles about price of biscuits and policeman looking young for good measure).

Then home, my boys, a sofa for weary legs. Such a treat to steal a day with just my daughter, am too aware that the clock is ticking and come September she will be living away from home. Still, regular visiting is a perfect excuse for more of those sublime chips!

Love Miss Cisco XXX



  1. January 19, 2015 / 9:48 am

    Love your photo’s and what a treasure to have spent a great day out with your daughter, I hope her uni move goes really smoothly and you can have the luxury of visiting her for lots of days out together too when she is there! 🙂
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  2. January 19, 2015 / 10:15 am

    I think I’d choose Bristol over Manchester, it feels like a much smaller city and has so many unique spots. I love the lawns by the college and the shopping is also a draw!!
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  3. January 19, 2015 / 11:27 am

    I would definitely prefer Bristol, it’s a lovely little city. We went last year and visited this area where all the houses were built by the owners, kind of like an eco co-op self build thing, and the houses were awesome, so original. Lot’s of history but also lot’s to do for young adults 🙂
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    • January 19, 2015 / 1:53 pm

      It is ace isnt it, looking forward to having the perfect excuse to spend more time there (hopefully…) x

  4. Emily
    January 19, 2015 / 12:53 pm

    Lovely photographs and I wish her all the best with her final decision.

  5. January 19, 2015 / 1:33 pm

    We have a Harvey Nics??!?!?!? Why did nobody tell me. It is very rare that a blogger can match stunning prose with stunning photos but m’lady you have pulled it off. Reading this post was like reading an exert from a novel. Love the poetic scene-setting style of your writing. Wow just wow. I had that exact same scenario you describe (close but not close) with parents in London and Uni in Canterbury. I vote for Bristol too. Love your photos which are food for the soul.
    @NewMumOnline xx
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  6. January 19, 2015 / 1:38 pm

    What a lovely day out with your daughter. I loved Bristol when we visited and am quite jealous she might be going to Uni there!
    Mummy of Two recently posted…A year in photos – Week 3My Profile

  7. January 19, 2015 / 1:52 pm

    I need to go to Bristol! I love the street art, Bristol always looks so vibrant x
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    • January 19, 2015 / 2:21 pm

      It was awesome pie – I really recommend visiting a Pieminister if you have one nearby!

  8. January 19, 2015 / 3:09 pm

    You know I vote Bristol too! What isn’t to love about it? Plus you will get to see me! 😀 Glad you had a lovely visit, was a perfect wintry day for it. xx
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  9. January 19, 2015 / 4:58 pm

    Your photos were great and I think Bristol is the best!! Such a fun, happy and cultured city with so much going on. Love it!
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  10. January 19, 2015 / 5:08 pm

    Oh you are making me homesick woman! Here I was getting all used to the country life and now you have me craving the city again. I do love Bristol.
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  11. January 19, 2015 / 5:59 pm

    I used to live in Manchester it is a metropolitan city but too busy for me. Bristol looks lovely, I love the fact you got to spend some quality time togther that’s what it is all about isn’t it
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  12. January 19, 2015 / 7:01 pm

    Id choose Manchester over Bristol as the hub is a Mancunian, that said, ive spent many a time in Bristol with friends for a night out and had a lot of fun x

  13. January 19, 2015 / 7:41 pm

    I’ve never been to Bristol, but from your pictures it actually looks lovely 😉 I hope that Betsy can make the best decision for her future x
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  14. Mary Louise
    January 19, 2015 / 10:02 pm

    Looks as if you had a lovely day with your Daughter. I love your images and the single bricks with all the designs.
    Good luck to your Daughter in everything she accomplishes this year x

  15. January 20, 2015 / 7:54 am

    I love Bristol and would be very happy for any of my kids to go there. It is very different from Manchester – I love it’s quirkiness. Fingers crossed she chooses it and glad you had such a lovely day together 🙂
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  16. Michelle
    January 20, 2015 / 9:26 am

    Fantastic pictures! I think I’d choose Bristol 🙂 xxx

  17. January 20, 2015 / 9:55 am

    What a gorgeous post and that sounds like an amazing day. I love Bristol but don’t know it very well at all. I am now desperate to go and photograph graffiti!
    Mummy Barrow recently posted…Kenya boundMy Profile

  18. January 20, 2015 / 10:12 am

    I adore Bristol. It’s where my mum is from and where we holidayed every year as children. I lived there briefly in my 20s too – on the very posh The Avenue in Clifton. Your post has made me want to go back there for a visit!
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  19. January 20, 2015 / 12:35 pm

    I visited Bristol when I was little and a couple of times in University. I loved it. I have to say that I too want to go and see the graffiti now!
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  20. January 22, 2015 / 12:20 pm

    I have only ever been to Bristol for a xouple of training courses so not really seen anything of it – does look and sound like a beautiful place and I hope she picks it (no pressure obvs)
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