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Wednesday, 12 June 2019

Greyhound walk

Sunday was the one good day weather wise here. Which was good as it was the Great Global Greyhound Walk.

It is the first time we have done this one but as DD has poor health, we just did the short walk around the field. We took the one dog Poppy as Paddy is too old now for this so I borrowed a dog from the kennels. We went back for tea and cake in aid of the Retired Greyhound charity. I was nearly tempted to buy some greyhound earrings but decided I wouldn't wear them so let them be. DD met another greyhound owner she has spoken to on FB but never met so that was nice. 

Not very good photos as there was a lot of excited movement in the yard pre walk.

The name the dog raffle and items for sale.

DD with the dogs.

The start of the woodland walk where the majority went.

It was amazing we had such good weather when the day before and every day since has been mostly wet and miserable. The global walk is just that and has venues all over the place. This was nice and near for us at Waltham Abbey 20 minutes driving through beautiful countryside.

Thursday, 6 June 2019

Evening walk

After a morning indoors catching up with phone calls and paperwork then an afternoon at a funeral, I felt the need for a walk.  I hadn't seen the swan family since they hatched and DD said the five cygnets had reduced to four.

Across the meadow.

Mum and family

Dad having a feed on his own

Back to the river

A peaceful place to unwind.

Sunday, 2 June 2019

Open Gardens

I have been perusing the Essex National Gardens schemes booklet for some outings. Not much near here but noticed there were 4 gardens open at Waltham Abbey about 10 miles away. It's a lovely drive anyway and I'm familiar with the area so at last minute decided to go on my own as nobody else was available or wanted to go.

The first one was medium sized and had masses of chimney pots in the front garden for sale.

The next one was bigger with a woodland walk and served refreshments. The woodland walk was a real surprise as it ran along the side of the road beside the main garden and it didn't seem that there would be enough room for it.

Couldn't refuse the tea and lemon cream cake. Delicious!

Garden number 3 was tiny and they had won awards for it. Trouble was there were lots of people there and in the small space it was difficult to look at everything properly. I like to sit in a corner and just look but I felt I had to get up to let others in. It was lovely though.

The final garden seemed small but there was more tucked away at the bottom. The pond ran into a little stream and then into a large fish pond where it was pumped back again. 

So a lovely way to spend a sunny afternoon. I quite enjoyed being on my own because I could take my time and linger where I wanted. The gardens cost £6 for all of them and the tea and cake was £4 and all for charity so well worth it. 

Saturday, 1 June 2019

Dobb's Weir

Decided to take a sandwich and coffee with me this morning so I could stop for a little picnic on the way home. I managed to get the last space in the car park as I have a small car so was able to use the space with a huge tree behind it.

I haven't been here for ages and was surprised to see that the little old cafe that used to be there has been upgraded to a swish new one. On a hot Saturday lunch time it was packed but that didn't bother me as I sat on a bench by the river with my pack up.

There was a boat moored in front of me and as I looked up from my lunch I was surprised to see that it was a Sea Master cruiser. DB used to build them when we were first married. He was a cabinet maker and did all the woodwork inside. I have only ever seen one once before on the rivers around here.

This is the Sea Master. I had taken the first photo to show the river then I noticed the name on the boat so took the second one showing it.

The normal canal boat shown here.

As I sat there a couple with a little boy came along with a boat which they proceeded to inflate on the tow path next to me. The mum came and sat with me and we had a chat. They had only recently purchased it so were trying it out. She said it was a bit of a faff getting it all ready. I thought it was worth it because after the original outlay they have free entertainment for a long while. It was nice to see parents getting their child out into the fresh air. He was really enjoying helping his dad inflate it.

I enjoyed my little picnic and spent nothing as the carpark and loos were free and picnic brought from home.

Wednesday, 22 May 2019

A good news day

First son rang to say DIL had received her visa renewal. She is Canadian and was here for 2 years on a Youth Opportunity visa as she was under 30. Then she married DS two and a half years ago and has been on a spouse visa which ran out this month. She had to go to Croydon to submit her paperwork 3 weeks ago and it can take up to 6 weeks to get the result but it came today. We knew everything was in order but its a relief when its official.

Then just after that the hospital rang me and asked if I would like to bring my appointment forward from August to next week so very pleased with that.

The car had to go into the garage for a new exhaust today. I was told it would be £90 if just the end piece had to be replaced but £130 if the central piece also had to be changed. When I collected it the price was £73 so another good thing.

DD went to look at another park home today and it looks like this will be the one. The vendor still has to find a place but as he wants another park home up North in an area where there are plenty we hope it wont take too long.

She was going to buy one on the same site last Autumn but they said she was too young as it was 6 weeks before her 45th birthday which is the age limit. By the time she was old enough it had sold. So hopefully this time it will be successful.

Monday, 13 May 2019

Clacton Health walk

A couple of weeks ago we had two nights in Clacton-on-sea. It's only 60 miles away but I don't like driving there and back in one day any more and DB wanted to visit his brother and SIL. The last two years we have had a week there in the summer but I felt with the iffy weather 2 nights would be enough. We stayed in a very nice B&B who could cater for DB's mobility scooter.

We went straight to DB's favourite cafe for lunch then to visit his brother which was very nice to have a catch up. We got to the accommodation about 4pm and by then DB was wiped out so he went to bed and I went for a little walk. It was sunny and dry and turned cold but ok for a walk with a coat on.

I started to walk along the sea front toward the pier when I noticed the health walk signs telling me how many steps I had walked. It is a circular walk along the sea front then returning through the gardens which are mainly tended by volunteers. They were really beautiful.

Mediterranean garden.

Lots of lovely colour

Sea front fun.

The sea view from our room. DB wanted to stay in so we just had SB sandwich and tea in the room and I tried without success  to get the Now TV system to play live tv. DB went back to sleep so I just read and used my tablet to watch a program.

We will probably have a week later in the summer when I will be able to have a dip in the sea. Too cold now.

Sunday, 12 May 2019

Swan nest and lane to the ford

Yesterday was wet on and off all morning but had things to do out and about. Then after lunch the sun came out and I felt an urge to be outside but not gardening.  I decided to go and see the swan's nest that DD had told me about so had a wander along the river.

Only one of the pair here today but on the way back saw a lady I know going to check on the nest and she said the pair were there yesterday. DD and the lady had both seen the male pulling stuff out of the bank and chucking it on to the nest.

After the swan and the friendly little chat, I decided to detour down a lane that leads to the main road via a ford. I have never seen any traffic on the lane and used to take a friend's little boy there in his wellies so he could try damming the stream. I have seen kingfishers there but not recently.

I then took the footpath that crosses the field back to the river for the first time in ages.

And the rain kept off! It doesn't matter how many times I walk near the river there is always something new to see as it changes daily.