Wednesday 20th May (Day 69 of 236)
Our recent Shazza ‘Mystery Tours’ had been a success, not only had we unexpectedly fallen upon some nice and interesting places but more than that, it had re-kindled our enthusiasm to don our walking boots, pack a picnic and get out and do some exploring. We were due to have our extended period off, a Sunday Afternoon, all day Monday and Tuesday morning. We made a plan, our first half day off would see us rest up, potter around doing those little jobs that needed doing and then on our full day off we would head off for the whole day and do some walking. However, ‘Best Laid Plans And All That‘, the ‘Works of Fiction’ had other ideas, and a decent dry day was not forecast, in fact it had forecast a wet morning, afternoon, evening and night !! I seem to recall a lot of ‘hoo ha‘ several years ago about climate change, how the temperatures would change so dramatically that the four seasons, as we know them now, would be turned on their head and our Summers would get searingly hotter and our Autumn and Winters would see much more temperate climates. Well you prophets of doom, what are you waiting for, bring it on now, that’s what I say, because right now in the middle of May we are bloody freezing !!
Although the Sunday afternoon was a little bit wild, the wind blowing for all it was worth, we decided that if our full day off was going to be rained off, then we best make the most of this our first half day. There was a Garden Centre just a five-minute drive away, Shazza was still pondering on what type of casual furniture
she we wanted on the sun terrace in the Apartment in Spain. The sun terrace would be somewhere where we could get up and eat our breakfast, enjoy lunch but also be a relaxed informal lounging area. We both had ideas of what we wanted, unfortunately they were not the same, so she thought that perhaps viewing some casual garden/conservatory furniture may assist her us, in our deliberations.
Perhaps it was because Summer in these parts doesn’t start until the first week of September, and probably finishes in the second week, that this particular Garden Centre didn’t have much on offer, apart from a few wooden slatted tables and chairs and what I consider to be akin to park benches, you know the kind to which I am referring, highly varnished brown wooden slats that fit into wrought iron side frames painted in toxic green, the type you see dotted around most public parks, not really the class of furniture to adorn a nice Spanish Sun Terrace !! “Perhaps“, I suggested, “We should wait until we get to Spain and look there for appropriate furniture“. She gave me one of her looks before saying, in her ex-school mistress voice, “Well I had no plan to purchase anything from here, I was only looking“, I had been suitably chastised, silly me for even thinking that this little expedition had any real practical purpose. We left the store under a large black cloud and it had nothing to do with the weather conditions !!
We sat in the car, “Where do you want to go now” she said, I felt like saying “Oh, I get to have a choice today do I“, but I thought better of it. I knew that her dark mood wasn’t really aimed at me, we were both tired but Shazza doesn’t do cold and the weather and temperatures had not been very good for several days, with the prospect of being confined to Barracks on our full day off, she was not in the best frame of mind. I suggested that we drive down to the pier and walk out to the lighthouse, probably not one of my better suggestions considering it was blowing a right hooley, even with the sun shining the wind chill kept the temperature down to a not so nice 9 degrees(c). To my surprise Shazza offered up no protest but simply started the car and off we went, down to the pier. You can only drive so far down the harbour, but we parked up and for a few moments sat in silence, the warmth of the car heater making us feel much better, and we looked out upon the dark grey choppy waters. “Should we get out and go for a walk” I asked tentatively, to my surprise she said “Why not ?“.
We timed it just about right for no sooner had we got back to ‘Big Momma’ and the heavens opened !! Fortunately I had the forethought to leave the heating on so at least it was nice and cosy inside. Shazza made us a nice hot dinner and we settled down to eat it whilst watching the omnibus edition of ‘Come Dine With Me‘, and watch it was all we could do, as we could not hear it for the torrential rain thumping down on ‘Big Momma’s’ roof, and when I say thumping it was like having several thousand tonnes of hardcore poured on the roof !! That was the theme for the rest of the night, usually I like laying in bed, drinking my last hot mug of coffee under a cosy warm duvet whilst listening to the rhythmic pitter patter of the rain until it sent me to sleep, no such luck, this was so noisy I was more concerned the roof would cave in at any time !! But, always looking on the positive side, we have had quite a lot of rain, accompanied by strong winds, since I did the proper repair on the leak from the rear mounted cycle rack, quite a few weeks ago now, and I am really pleased to report that there has been no water ingress.
We awoke to much of the same on the Monday morning so decided to just stay in bed. When we did finally get out from under the lovely warm duvet the rain had stopped and we ate hot bacon rolls whilst looking out at the grey threatening skies above. We decided that grey and gloomy, but dry, was doable, we could still get out in the car and have a drive somewhere rather than waste the day and risk cabin fever, however, we said it far too loudly, we had just got our coats on, stepped out of the van and the heavens opened again, emptying their watery load. We got back inside ‘Big Momma’, put the kettle on and whiled away the rest of the very wet afternoon, evening and night. We tried to cheer ourselves up by looking at photo’s of our Apartment in Spain, but when we looked at the temperatures over there and saw 22-27 degrees for the next eight days, somehow it didn’t have the desired effect, for the life of me I cannot think why !!
So, basically, our extended and highly valued period of time off was spent doing the square root of absolutely nothing, now we were back to work for four days before we would get a half day off and where, once again, we would then be at the mercy of the good old British weather………………………………….. !!