At the weekend, we headed out in the car. The intention was to go to Culzean Castle, but as we approached, Karen saw a sign for Girvan, and so we ended up there.
This was a real trip down memory lane for me. When I was a kid, this is where we came on holiday every year. The wee harbour is still there, although it’s a few pleasure craft now, either private, or offering trips to Ailsa Craig, instead of being full of fishing boats like it use to be.
The B&B’s and small hotels that used to make up the majority of the seafront houses, are gone, with the exception of only two or three. The one we stayed in every year is now a private house.
The putting green is still there, but with only one course instead of two. The Beach Pavillion where there used to be lots of shows put on, has been pulled down as has the swimming pool.
The boating pond is back up and running, but instead of small motor boats, and two laps of the pond, it’s now pedalo’s and as many laps as you can squeeze into 20 minutes.
The main street is a shadow of it’s former self. The cinema where I saw my first movie on a big screen, closed years ago to become a bingo hall, which has also now closed. The wee quirky shops have disappeared and become Poundland type shops. The toyshop I loved as a kid, where I was bought kites or toys for the beach, is now a pub.
Karen thinks it’s still a lovely wee town, and don’t get me wrong, it is. It’s just that I have all these memories of how it used to be, and they’re clouding my judgement.
The beach is sprawling and beautiful, there are still a couple of old fashioned amusement arcades, and we bought chips and sat at the harbour watching the boats and the anglers.
The biggest surprise of all was the shop in the photo. This was there when I was a kid, and it’s still there, and hasn’t changed. Also, it’s still the same person serving. He’s very old now and takes an age to get from one end of the counter to the other, and you feel guilty asking for something that he might have to bend down for, in case he can’t get back up, but it’s a little bubble from the past that’s still there, and that in itself made the trip worthwhile for me.