The Llanberis house is very small, it may be damp, it has an awkward garden, it's in the middle of the tourist area, it's far from work and it doesn't have parking. But the environment is SO beautiful! And it's extremely snug.
The Tan-y-Foel house has no access to the garden other than through the house, and the front is right on the street. The house is cute but not anywhere as cute as the Llanberis one. The environment is lovely! But the commute would be rather challenging on bike.
The house in Rachub is in an ugly street and it looks in the not-so-pretty direction. A lot of logistic hassle and no view!
So it was a case of keeping looking. I saw another one on Rightmove. It was a slightly strange one; it had no outside pictures. So which one was it? It's not quite true the markers on the website are accurate down to the very building. It was an old cottage, in Gerlan so surrounded by newer buildings. A garden was mentioned. And I thought I could see the garden had its own entrance. I booked a viewing! So on Saturday I drove to Gerlan.
I was a bit early so I decided to drive past another one that had caught my eye. One right on the river bank! The view onto the river is amazing! With nothing really on the other side. Just fields and trees. And the house is too big for me, but, it has an amazing view! It means that even when you're busy and you only eat, sleep, commute and work, you see beauty. I'm not sure from which rooms you have that view but it should be possible to see the view while brushing your teeth or making sandwiches. And that's important! And if you have time to actually get out of the house, well, Nant Ffrancon is not far, nor are the hills above Rachub and Gerlan! And it has parking. I will surely drive to work sometimes! It's more than an hour on bicycle. Home, that is; to work is more downhill so a bit quicker.
View of the river from nearby the house
View of the river looking upstream
I then had an outside look at a house nearby the house I was going to see from the inside. It was cheap, and one of those on the hill, which has only a blind wall uphill, and the front of the house is on the downhill side. To get to it you need to walk down a small alleyway that goes past the fronts, with the gardens on the other side. This house had a view on Penrhyn Quarry! From a garden with no privacy whatsoever. Pros and cons! And on the inside (according to the pictures) it needs a lot of work but I would have lots of money for that if I'd buy it. I suppose one can just park in the street. Wide enough!
The garden of the cheap house
I then went to the house I had the viewing. A nice lady opened the door of the house next door to the one I thought it was. Oh dear! Oh well, I got there now. I walked in. It looked different from on the pictures; the furniture had gone. It turned out to have been her mother who had lived here, but she had died. It was a cute house! But very polished. All the raw stone well-rendered. A remote-controlled gas fire instead of a log burner. Deep carpets in light colours. Everything was quite perfect! A bit too perfect for me. But well, one can make a house one's own I suppose.
It's the one on the right
She showed me the garden; that needed some work. But it was very secluded, and had a little bit of view over the mountains. It was big enough to put a parking space in there! And it had a shed.
We chatted a bit and then I went on my way. I wasn't sure! It hadn't set my heart aflutter. But it was nice. Hmm. Anyway; I had decided to drive past several other houses, to figure out if I wanted viewings there. Sometimes seeing it from the outside is enough! So I then went to Tregarth (really good location commute-wise) but the house didn't float my boat at all. No nice views, and the garden didn't look exciting either. Not one for a viewing!
Off then to St Anns Bethesda. There was a bit of a tangential cottage there: expensive, and with a damp problem. And seeing it I wasn't impressed; it looked depressing, and the view wasn't particularly good in spite of it being on quite a hill. Not one for a viewing!
The house in St Anns Bethesda, seen from the public footpath that goes right past it
Onwards back to Llanberis fro another look. I first had a look at Dolbadarn Castle as it's nice. And it is! And again I was struck by how beautiful the surroundings are. But I looked again at the garden. I let myself in! And I noticed a few things. One: the cottage was even more crouched down in the hill than I remembered. Two: there was no hedge or anything between this garden and that of the chapel. Three: in the back it actually is big enough for a garden shed. And you would have space for some chairs! Four: the B&B has nicked a corner of the garden. I have the title plan, I could see they appropriated a part that's not theirs! The cheeks. I still see how beautiful it is but the flaws are becoming clearer too.
Looking towards Pen-y-Pass from the tower
The respective gardens of the chapel (right), the cottage (middle) and the B&B next door (left)
The house is built into the hill to quite some extent
Next stop: Waunfawr. It's a bit far from everything, but I was curious. It was in the middle of nowhere! But when I found the property in question I didn't like it too much. Barely a hill to be seen! Another one off the list.
Last stop: Bethel. Nice and close to Bangor, but no hill nearby. There was a very cute cottage for sale though. With a cute garden! When I got to it some other people were lingering around. They had a viewing booked! And they were OK with me tagging along. Nice of them! And it was cute. But the environment was boring. I don't want to live somewhere boring again!
That was it! Most of them are off the list. But the ones in and near Bethesda are still in the running. One day I will have to decide! If only the Bethel cottage had been standing (for its price, preferably) at the location of the riverbank house. I'd have put an offer in now!