Perfect Harmony

Perfect Harmony
Moored at Huntingdon

Thursday, 29 August 2013

29th August '13

I see it's over 2 weeks since I wrote anything, but in my defence we've been a bit busy! Believe it or not I'm now getting nagged by my mum that I haven't kept it up to date! A bit of technology has gone to her head! (Love you Mum xx)

Anyway we had Jamie to stay and unfortunately I can't find my small camera that had some pictures of him with his fishing adventures on. He was so easy to have here, a real pleasure.

Here we are in the caves at the Heights of Abraham. He'd never been in a cable car before or in a cave so he really enjoyed the day. The walk down and up again to see the lower cave nearly killed me but otherwise it was nice to do something touristy up here. Derbyshire really is a beautiful county.

This is the view from the cable car across the Derwent Valley. Unfortunately views never seem to have the impact in a photo that they do in real life, but it really was pretty impressive.

While he was here we went to visit Tom, Francesca and Nellie and she fell in love with her big cousin and wouldn't leave him alone! He was very good with her and here they are together, in a brief moment when she wasn't pulling him around the room or demanding he reads her a book.

Camera found! Here he is with a roach - he was a fantastic fisherman, caught 13 on his first evening here, no  big ones thank goodness as John was sorting out the motorhome some of the time and if I'd been asked to help out with a big fish I'm not sure what the outcome would have been (mind you I did nothing with the small fish either - hate fish!).

We took Jamie back to Dorset in the motorhome and spent one evening with Rach, Matt and boys staying on their drive, then went and had a day with Rachel and Paul, staying in a pub car-park (you'll find a trend here).

On Saturday the weather changed for the worse but we had a wonderful day at Tanya and Martyn's wedding, her dress was stunning. Much to our delight William took the service, he was our vicar at West Stour and baptised both Chloe and Tom and was a good chap, who we sadly missed when he moved on.

Tom making sure he was in the picture! Watched by Francesca, Nellie was off somewhere making herself known to all and sundry.

Chloe and Sam, our little girl all grown up (well she's been grown up since she was about 2 actually but you know what I mean).

Here I am with a chicken on my head!

Nellie and Tanya. Nellie really got into the spirit of things and kept going amazingly well. She has Happy Hedgehog with her - the nursery toy that goes out with children whose parents then take photos of him doing interesting things and visiting various places. We got into this in a big way...

Just one of several photos of Happy that won't go back to the nursery!

The camera died at this point so no more pictures I'm afraid. We stayed in the pub car park after the reception which was very handy. Then we went to visit my brother and his wife. Colin and Nicky let Paddy run around the garden and the kitchen so he thought he was in heaven! He was very reluctant to get back inside that evening and a bit of freedom seems to have gone to his head as he's run off twice since we've been back on the marina, just up to the grass, but I think he's trying to tell us something!

After a night on Colin's drive we went back to West Stour where we used to live and spent a night in the pub car park there and managed to see quite a few old friends and neighbours, which was lovely.

Then we moved on down to Bournemouth and had 2 nights at Hurn on a nice little site where we were able to see Katie and Grant. All in all a lovely week away, if somewhat busy.

On our return we had to have a quick clean up of the motorhome as Tom and family had it for a couple of nights up in the Peaks, followed by a barbecue at their house with both families on the Sunday to celebrate the first brewing of Toms own beer. All of these drinking opportunities and I'm no longer drinking - ironic isn't it?

This week John has done nothing but clean / paint / repair either the boat or the motorhome, despite having our wedding anniversary and his birthday in the last few days. He's exhausted but won't give up and wants it all done before the weather changes.

I've done little but knit, crochet, walk Paddy and resume searching the family tree. I don't know where the time goes, but go it does.

Saturday, 10 August 2013

10th August '13

First a very big Happy Birthday to Jan, a very good friend who I've forgotten to send a card to but who has read my blog EVERY DAY. I feel really bad and thought a public apology would go some way towards making me feel better even if it still means she doesn't have a card!

We've settled back into marina life and have had a very busy week. John has been painting and polishing the boat to get rid of the effects of the cruise, and we have been getting the motor-home sorted out as we'll be off in it next week.

We had a day out on Wednesday, taking the cratch cover to be repaired.

We went back to Shebdon Wharf where they repaired the one zip last year, this year they replaced the other three! as well as patching it up beautifully. I wish we'd known about them before we had our pram cover made as they could have done it a lot cheaper. Oh well, we live and learn. It was funny to drive over to the Shropshire  Canal- it took us about an hour! We had a long walk along it to the old Cadbury Wharf and then drove over to Norbury Junction for lunch.

We were sat at the Junction Inn and it was busy over at the cafe as well as on our side. We both went for the 'small' pie and chips! Well all I can say is that I'm glad I didn't attempt a large one. This was huge and lovely. A proper home-made pie, bursting with steak, delicious.

I have also had a shopping expedition with Francesca to buy myself a dress for Tanya's wedding next Saturday. I will ensure that a picture goes on with me wearing it next week as I feel like a million dollars in it, John is very impressed and it shows off my weight loss beautifully. This is me liking myself! Wow!

I've also been back to 2 knitting groups this week, which was lovely, I have a lot to do between now and Christmas! I need to focus.

We have 2 of the grandsons visiting next week, so I'll try and add something before we set off for the SW to go to the wedding, otherwise it will be from the motorhome, somewhere.......

Saturday, 3 August 2013

3rd August '13

This is several days late, I realise, but things have been somewhat busy!

We are home! We arrived back on Thursday evening just after 5.00pm after leaving at 9 that morning and planning to go to Alrewas. We were there by midday and the Indian restaurant doesn't open until 5,30 so we thought we'd get to Branston and go to the Italian there. It was only about 3 when we got there so we decided to go for broke and get home, and here we are!

 Our first sighting of Fradley Junction - you can just see the swingbridge in the distance. Naturally when we got there a boat was filling with water so we couldn't moor and then as soon as John opened the gate two boats came around the corner so we had to let them through. Finally we got to the Junction Lock and all went well for us again. More boats coming up than going down and someone at just about every lock.

A last look back at the Coventry Canal - see you again next year!

Fradley Junction in the sun. Busy as ever but boats waiting to come up so we were happy! Surprisingly there were moorings available both here and at Alrewas. Amazing considering it is now school holidays and the hire boats are out in force.

Bridge 36. Always fascinates me. From a distance it just doesn't look as if a boat will go through it but they always do! (mind you some appear to hit the sides judging by the edges of the stonework)

We know that home is close when we see the Marston's sign at Burton. For those Wind in the Willows fans out there (of which I am up near the top) Rat complements Mole on having some 'Old Burton' in his cupboard when they pay an unexpected visit to his hole. So there you go!

When we last passed these railings they had bits of old branches of trees left in them and the ground was being cleared. Now not 4 months later, there's a new fence up inside and houses are completed and drying out. Incredible!

When we got back to the marina, I have to say that there was no band waiting, no flags flying, just Keith and Karen waving us back and Ange hurling abuse. Nice to know that some things never change! The marina is barely recognisable though. The trees and shrubs have all grown so much during the summer that we can barely see the road from the boat and it's hard to see the boats in places when walking around the marina.

Paddy is pleased to be back to his old haunts, although he's struggling coming to terms with having neighbours again, walking up and down HIS jetty. He's going to have to live with it though.

Yesterday passed in a flurry of cleaning, washing and shopping for me and getting the motorhome sorted out for John. Then a visit to Tom, Francesca and Nellie last night. Back over there today for Francesca to come into Derby with me for a very successful hunt for a dress to wear to our nieces wedding in a fortnight and John and Tom took Nellie off to Hardwick Hall.

Blog will probably be a bit quiet for a bit but I'll try to put bits on as and when.