It was mid-afternoon, Dougie and I were out on different parts of the site to each other doing various groundwork jobs, the radio crackled into life, it was a message from ‘base control’ with the very welcome message of “Tea is up boys“. I didn’t need to be told twice and as I raced back to the office, at a safe speed of 5mph in compliance with the on-site speed limit of course, I assured the lady, who was waving her arms at me, that I would come back and untangle her dog from the mower blades once I had dealt with an urgent priority task. Dougie I presume was saying something similar to the man who was holding his EHU cable high in the air above his head, as he sped office bound on his bicycle, also at a safe speed of 5mph I hasten to add. Why the mans wife was leaning out of the kitchen window of their caravan waving an electric kettle I will never know, it will never boil that way I thought to myself !!
It was whilst we were enjoying our mid-afternoon cuppa’s that the phone rang, Avril answered it and then handed the phone to me stating that it was ‘Doctor Leech‘ for me !! I have to confess that the penny didn’t drop for a second or two until I realised that this was my daughter and her way of announcing that she had received official notification of successfully attaining her PhD. After congratulating her and asking if she could recommend something for my aching bones (No, she isn’t really that kind of Doctor !!) yup ! Like a joke but just not funny, we arranged to Video SKYPE in a couple of days when I was off duty and just a couple of days before she flew out to Australia to commence her own new Adventure !!
It would take a couple of weeks to get into the work routines, however, we now had our working roster for the season and we could see the all important ‘days off’, which meant we could plan certain things. Although we live in our Motorhome fulltime there are still ‘normal’ everyday things that need to be catered for. Our Mobile phone contracts had now come to the end of their initial two-year contract, which meant that our iPhone 5’s were now ours, more importantly we were now free to change service providers or to leave a subscription service and just use a ‘Pay As You Go’ (PAYG) SIM Card. We had been happy with the contract of Unlimited free Calls, Unlimited free Texts, 2Gb monthly Data Allowance and, important for us, the ‘Travel Bolt On’ package that enabled us to make Calls back to the UK from Europe for just £0.50p a call (up to 59 minutes duration). What we didn’t like was the £48 a month contract subscription charge (£96 a month for both phones). We looked at the various packages that were available and each had something slightly different to offer, if we were into watching SKY TV on our phones then ‘Vodaphone’ had a good deal, however their ‘European’ deal was not as good at £3 per day, so as soon as you made one call you would be charged £3 even if you didn’t make any other calls that day !! After doing a lot of comparisons we decided to stick with the same package we had with ‘O2’ but now it was a 12 month contract and only £20 a month, so just £40 for both our phones, a massive saving of £56 on our monthly budget, that will do nicely thank you very much !! The next job was to speak to the FIAT Commercial Service Centre on the outskirts of Edinburgh, we had to get ‘Big Momma’ Serviced and MOT’d but it would have to be done on one of our days off. Fortunately, because we had time to play with, we were able to arrange a suitable date, Monday 20th April, it would mean an early start as they wanted the van in by 08:30am and it would be an all day job. They always tell you that but I have sat and waited at other service centres and it is frustrating when you travel hours to get somewhere for the allotted time to see that they don’t make a start on it until mid-morning, sometimes even after lunch !! However, there is a bus stop near to this particular place and there is a bus into Edinburgh City Centre every Twenty minutes, so we will have another opportunity to do some more sightseeing, although we have now done Edinburgh several times so we will have to look at some places to visit that we hadn’t already done. So that was two of the priority jobs sorted, we then got our Freezer well stocked, with long working days the last thing you want to be doing is running back out to the shops when you finish to get something for the evening meal !!
We still had time to get another ‘little’ expedition completed, there were quite a few walks to do just around Berwick itself and the more we explored the town the more footpaths we were finding. On a previous mini-exploration we had walked just part way around the ramparts of this old walled town, but now Shazza wanted to complete it. This walk shared part of the route with the ‘Lowry Trail‘, but we decided that we would do that as a separate walk in its own right on a future day off.
We walked from the site into the town, just a short ‘stroll’ which took 20-30 minutes walking along the Estuary from which the ‘River Tweed‘ flows into the sea.
It was a lovely walk around the walls of the town but it had made us a little peckish, we hadn’t bothered with flask or sandwiches and quite fortunately we found ourselves back in the town and it was ‘lunchtime’. I think that I managed, with some difficulty, to convince Shazza that sampling the delights of a local eatery was not extravagance but a necessity, we needed to sample such hostelries so that we could make suggestions to our ‘guests’ when they asked for such information. I am not sure that she believed that this wasn’t just me wanting to eat out but she gave me the combination code to ‘my’ wallet anyway. We had a lovely lunch at a nice ‘Bistro’ but we didn’t have to worry about the calories, I felt we had already walked them off but my suggestion to perhaps also continue with our ‘Customer Information’ gathering by sampling the ‘public transport’, namely a bus or taxi back to the site, certainly fell on deaf ears and Shazza explained that the clue was in the name of our footwear, ‘Walking Boots’ !! I was rather hoping that on our next day off our next exploration may involve a car journey, a long one………………………………… !!