Thought I would do the first blog of 2016 and get up to speed with our shenanigins since leaving Breakaway at Streethay boatyard on the 19th December. We had spent a few days stripping things down and packing them away in readiness for it’s new paintwork. We had been advised that the boat would take 6-7 weeks. When we handed over the keys, we were told they were 2 weeks behind. Fair enough as we had alot of things to do whilst back in Cornwall. We hired a car from Lichfield (upgraded to a diesel Insignia which was lovely), and headed for our daughters in Leicester. We had a lovely pre Christmas dinner with all the trimmings, stayed with them for a couple of nights, and then headed to Cornwall for Christmas. I had to do some shopping and fill our freezer, and the local Co-op didn’t disappoint with reduced items like milk, pork and lamb. Bargain. We spent Christmas day with my son (having our second Christmas dinner), and had pressies to open. Then followed a tirade of appointments in the first week of January; which then generated more appointments. Dentist-both needed crowns! Doctor-needed x-ray! Charlie’s hearing aids-needed new ones! Solicitor-more papers to sign! Financial advisor-still more papers to sign. This said the appointments would take us to the middle of February. We would need the car longer. Decision made to see if we could get to see friends in London and the South East. Heavy rain and continuous storms showed up a leak in the front window of our small bijou apartment. Builders contacted and they arranged to come and view the problem; this meant no London trip in January. On one of the few dry days whilst in Cornwall we partook of a locals freebie day at Eden (by showing our council tax bill).,with my son and his partner. I had taken some photos there but cannot get them to load from the phone to the computer ggrrhh. We had a lovely Sunday lunch there, and all agreed it was a very enjoyable day out. Good to see new things developing each time we visit.
Right, new decision to visit friends in February. This time we had to get the builders back again as window still showing small leak. It had rained almost constantly, but still we don’t expect leaky windows in a new build property. Disappointed friends once again.
Boat’s progress slow. They managed to get it blacked mid January. We had been sent a photo of her covered in snow, by John and Fiona on Epiphany, who passed by.
Car ordered for a further month (expensive), and Charlie became a fully fledged pensioner during this time. Think his pension will be put straight into savings.
Whilst in Cornwall, caught up with colleagues from work; and friends. Lunching out and dinners in. Always good to catchup with the girlies. Also nice to do shopping without Charlie in tow!
Got through appointments with ease (more expense in some cases, especially dentist). Looked like we may be on track for a London visit beginning of March! But we would need the car for a third month. Oh well in for a penny. People contacted and arrangements made. Weather looked reasonable.
We left Cornwall on the 23rd February for Leicester, as it was my granddaughters 9th birthday on the 24th. We managed to surprise her as she hadn’t been told we were coming. We also wanted to visit the boatyard whilst here to check on Breakaway’s progress. We were taken out by my daughter in the evening to a Turkish restaurant, to celebrate all the birthdays that had been or were pending. Lovely food, ample portions, with leftovers to take home for lunch the next day.
Boatyard visited, and Breakaway looked very sad. All her windows were removed and paint was being removed from her roof. We do hope they will get a move on now. Seem’s to us they are doing the work “dreckly”.
1st March and we are off to London. First stop Biggin Hill to see our good friends Carol and Steve. We managed lunch out (liver and bacon lunch recommended by Steve in the local pub). A visit to Polhill garden centre. A shopping trip to Bromley with Carol (visiting one of the biggest Primark’s I have seen).
4th March we left for Blackheath, to our other good friends Bobby and Benvinda. We visited Down House (the home of Charles Darwin), and Eltham palace (the home of the Courtauld’s), as both are English Heritage sites and we have a valid pass at the moment.
Mothers day lunch cooked by Benvinda, enjoyed by ourselves and her son and his family.
7th March off again to Canterbury, to visit Wendy and Dennis. Not seen them for 38years! Christmas cards exchanged yearly. I used to work with Wendy at the Brook hospital in Shooters Hill (now a housing village). We had a trip into Canterbury
Tuesday we went to New Romney to have a pub lunch meeting up with another ex colleague from the Brook days, Adele. A huge lunch was had by all; and alot of chatter catching up.
On the way back we drove through St Mary’s Bay (our first bungalow was here). Dymchurch and Hythe. It was late so we didn’t stop. We will have to do it again when we visit again. After our whistle stop tour we headed back to Leicester. We were going to take the car back to the hire firm, as we had had it for 3 months now. The Lichfield branch of Enterprise were brilliant. Good customer service, and friendly staff. Sorry to see the Insignia go though.
Daughters birthday on the 12th March. Birthday lunch of pie and mash (good old London favourite), and chocolate cupcakes. We are now waiting for the nod that the boat is finished. We have been given a date of the 9th April. I do hope it is. It’s been the longest 9 weeks ever. Meanwhile we are doing our grandparenting duties during the Easter holidays. One thing we want to do before we leave Leicester is the historical King Richard 111 walk around the city. If we do I’ll get photo’s onto the blog.