Four and a half hours after leaving London via tube train and bus and we arrived in Hay, the town of books and for the next 10 days the venue for the much acclaimed Hay Literary Festival. I’ve been planning this first visit (in my head at least) for almost a year so I am very pleased to be here, along with fellow book worm and travel companion, my mum.
First impressions are very good. We are staying in a room above Tomatitos a busy and buzzy tapas restaurant in the middle of town. We have delicious food on tap, crisp white bed linen and a view of a book shop from our room. In fact the streets are so narrow that it seems if I opened the creeky sash window and reached out I could select a book from my bed!
We have had our first view of the festival with a late afternoon wander to the site. Colourful bunting, inviting deck chairs, large (currently mostly empty) marquees and lots of places to eat cake drink tea (or something a little stronger) and read. And of course the renowned festival book shop along with an Oxfam second-hand book shop brimming with literary treasures. As things don’t really get going properly until tomorrow we had the luxury of unhurried and spacious browsing. Between us we have already bought 5 books, not all for ourselves you understand. So all in all a very happy and fruitful start to our time in Hay.