Sunday, 1st October, 2017
Up early to damp weather outside for this first day of October. The girls left for a trip to Arundel before splitting up with Catherine returning to her house about 5 miles away and Ruth & Jane going to London. Ruth brought each a present from their trip to Brighton yesterday which was very thoughtful of her. Pauline received a bauble commemorating their visit to The Royal Pavilion and I received an amusing book to mark the fact that I have given up alcohol again, this time for a target 4 months. It was lovely to see my sisters in my house but I do find company exhausting. Even so, it was good to do.
We went for a full work out this afternoon. We are going away to see an old work colleague in Poole Harbour later in the week so we will do 2 more sessions at the Health Club before we go. The sun came out around mid day and we had a lovely swim in the out door pool. Sunday is a good one to go to the Health Club because many people choose family time instead of exercise.
One of the topics of conversation that came up with my sisters that they believed I am a Climate Change denier. I am not but I don’t believe that human activity is the main cause of change. I believe, and I think there is plenty of evidence to back this up, that there have been huge shifts in warming and cooling, in heating and cooling which have little causation in earthly activity but are triggered by external factors. An interesting report in The Independent on Saturday says that we are heading for a mini ice age beginning in the next 15 years and mirroring the last one in the second half of the 17th Century. The next one will be slightly mitigated by the recent warming we have experienced and so start from a higher point. Hold the front page: Climate Warming becomes Climate Cooling!
Monday, 2nd October, 2017
Lovely warm and sunny day. We were up early because we were taking the car to have some stone chips re-sprayed. We have a body shop nearby called ChipsAway and they will only have it for the day while we drive around in one of their courtesy cars. It will only cost around £200.00/€230.00 including the replacement car so it’s well worth it.
It is à propos of absolutely nothing but I thought I would just record pictures of my sisters’ trip to Brighton a couple of days ago. They visited The Royal Pavilion and then the British Airways Brighton i360. We haven’t even been there ourselves. They seem to have really enjoyed what was quite a tiring escapade and brought these photos back with them. I must stress that they are only half of my sisters. I have 6 in all. I know what you’re thinking but I can cope. I’ve got 2 brothers as well.
Logged on to The Skiathan’s Blog to find it was being read from Manchester as well. The Tories are so in trouble that they are contemplating Winter on Skiathos. Well, Chios, Samos, Lesvos, Kos, Leros and Rhodes have got plenty of immigrants, why shouldn’t Skiathos entertain (detain) Theresa May and Boris Johnson, et al? Good Luck with that! I don’t know if The Skiathan had anything to do with it but Manchester certainly gave the Tory Conference delegates a warm welcome.
Tuesday, 3rd October, 2017
My sisters arrived on Friday and the weather took a turn for the worse. They left on Sunday and Monday saw a return of the sun. Today was particularly nice with clear, blue sky and strong sun. The temperature was not hot but reached a pleasant 19C/66F. After an hour in the gym, we had the outdoor pool to ourselves with the sun on our backs and it was absolutely delightful.
We are going to Poole Harbour for a couple of days to meet up with an old friend and to celebrate Pauline’s 66th birthday on Thursday. I have been searching for somewhere nice to eat for her birthday Dinner. There is a Rick Stein restaurant nearby which has an interesting menu. Whether we will be able to get in, we will see. We are going to try out the Poole David Lloyd Health Club while we are there. We will spend a chunk of Thursday in Blandford Forum where our old friend has lived for 40 years.
Wednesday, 4th October, 2017
Off at 10.00 this morning to Poole via Bournemouth. May go to the David Lloyd Health Club in Poole before checking-in to our hotel. The journey is a couple of hours but check-in isn’t until 3.00 pm so we’ve got plenty of time…..
…… We arrived in Bournemouth after a couple of hours of easy driving. We parked up and walked down to the pier where I bought Pauline an early birthday present of huge slabs of cream & chocolate fudge. We had a walk along the coast and then set off for the David Lloyd Health Club in Poole. There we did a 40 mins swim in their outdoor pool and a few minutes in the sauna before driving to our hotel in Poole Marina.
It is just a Holiday Inn Express but quite delightful. We had a snack and then set off to walk around Poole Quay. It was a wonderfully warm evening and the Quay was full of interesting sights. We found a lovely fish restaurant where we can celebrate Pauline’s birthday tomorrow and found the Deli/Cafe where we will meet our friends in the morning.
By the time we had walked back to our hotel, we were tired and I had done my 15000 paces for the day. This evening will be a quiet one of newspapers and television. I just don’t have the stamina my sisters clearly display.
Thursday, 5th October, 2017
Happy 66th birthday to my lovely wife. We have now accrued 132 years of experience between us. I’m so glad we chose to come down to Poole Quay to celebrate her birthday. The weather has been absolutely lovely. Sunshine and beautiful views over the past two days. We have also had a lovely meeting with a girl who taught at our school between 1973 -77 and with whom Pauline was particularly close. The last time we saw her was at her brother’s house in Surrey – a beautiful, old house previously owned by Rick Parfit of Status Quo. Those are the only connections other than by Christmas card in 40 years.
Jill was a PE teacher who married an accountant and moved to Dorset. She is 65 now and I thought she was much younger. I also thought she had worked with us for much longer than 4 years. Maybe she just made a bigger impression on me than I thought. Today, we walked down from our hotel – a 25 mins walk – to meet Jill at the Deli on the Quay. The sun was strong and warm as we sat in front of the Cruisers, fishing vessels and tall sailing boats with sun filtering through the masts. The temperature was only 18C/65F but there was not a hint of a breeze which made it feel warmer. We were there for a couple of hours as the years rolled away and parted vowing to meet up again soon.
In our down time, we’ve been discussing our possible Australia trip. We are still rather balking at the length of flight. Kindly, Richard has suggested a counter intuitive idea – fly even longer and further. It has rather captured our imaginations and reawakened a flight of fancy we considered before we built the Greek house. Richard has suggested flying around the world with multiple stopovers. Thank you, Richard. Hold that thought!
Friday, 6th October, 2017
Another day of our ‘Indian Summer’ with strong sunshine from peerless blue skies. This old chap served in the British Army in India but was best known for his 1907 camp for kids on Brownsea Island in Poole Harbour where we have been over the past three days. This camp led to the formation of The Boy Scouts Association and, ultimately, a world wide movement. The old chap is sitting here on Poole Quay looking out to his former haunt. He is nothing if not a ‘Remainer’.
We, on the other hand, are leaving this lovely place in lovely weather. We have really enjoyed our few days and reunited with our old friend and colleague and now return to West Sussex revived and ready for an exercise programme this afternoon….The drive home took about an hour and forty minutes although strong sun make it a little difficult. It doesn’t matter where we go and how much we enjoy ourselves, homing coming is delicious and very comfortable. Pauline even had Birthday cards waiting for her on the doormat.
Saturday, 7th October, 2017
Had to do our weekly shop so we went out early to beat the crowds. Sainsbury’s by 8.30 am and Tesco by 9.00 am. Everywhere was so deliciously quiet and devoid of people that it reminded us of our weekend shopping when we were working. We always tried to hit the weekend running and get to the supermarket for 8.00 am to avoid the crowds. Today, we bought some lovely big and thick Tuna steaks for griddling. They were accompanied by whole Sea Bass, nice, thick cod loins and a couple of sides of salmon. That should get us through the next few days.
We went off to the Health Club to punish ourselves for our three days away but ended up really enjoying it. Unfortunately, when we got home and relaxed, I realised that I had given myself a ‘dead leg’ in my right upper thigh and it increasingly gave me pain over the evening.