Sunday 16th August (Day 157 of 236)
Doesn’t time fly when your having fun working !! Okay, so I know that it has been quite some time since I last managed to pen some ramblings and I fully understand, from the correspondence I have been receiving, that a few of my blog followers have been getting withdrawal symptoms, but what can I say ? Well quite obviously not a lot !! However, there have been a number of very good reasons for the lack of communication, the main ones being either the very bad weather on our days off, which certainly curtailed ‘Expeditions’ of any description, or, many of our recent days off being taken up with my attendance at various medical and dental appointments. There is absolutely nothing that we can do about the weather other than stay indoors in the dry and the comfort of ‘Big Momma’, however, as for the latter, well everything is coming together nicely now and so you can cancel the booking of the hire of the somber funeral attire and no need just yet for the sending of any notes of condolence to Shazza, as it appears that I may just be staying around for a wee bit longer, however, I must say that I really do appreciate the efforts that you were going to make to give me a good send off and to attend the function afterwards to toast my demise and ‘Good Health’ !!
The Dental stuff is nearly complete, no more infection and just another couple of ‘fillings’ to go, my arm is another story and although improving, it will not be healed until I finish the seasons duties and can rest it properly. But by far the best bit of news, well as far as I am concerned anyway, is that in a few weeks time I shall be having surgery to remove the ‘Cataract‘ and will be having a replacement lens inserted. This will mean that for a short period afterwards I will be restricted on some certain ‘Elf‘ duties like driving the tractor, emptying bins, cutting grass, trimming hedges etc. etc. but that is where the both of us being equally trained comes in handy. I shall be confined to working in the Office on mundane tasks like dealing with ‘Departures‘, ‘Arrivals‘, taking telephone bookings and of course ‘talking‘ to the customers, a hell of a task I know but I am sure I will manage !! Shazza on the other hand will get the advantage of spending lots of time in the fresh air. I have already managed to give her a bit of refresher training on driving the tractor and using the industrial hedge trimmer. I am sure the dents in the tractor can be knocked out again with a panel hammer and the vegetation around the site will soon recover and grow back before our Regional Managers next scheduled visit !!
We are fortunate to be in a location by the sea that has a vast wealth of marine wildlife, we currently have a pod of dolphins in the bay, these have been sighted by many of our guests from their Caravan windows. We also have a couple of visiting grey seals, an Otter, two resident Herons and a whole flight of Swans, in excess of one hundred, so we are now awaiting the imminent arrival of the team from the BBC Countryfile programme, Nature Watch, or perhaps we may even be graced by the presence of the man himself, no not Richard Craven, but none other than Sir David Attenborough. Shazza has complained that so far she has not viewed any of these Natural wonders, I have tried to explain to her that she has little chance of doing so from either the ASDA, TESCO or Morrisons car parks !!
So, what have we been up to over the last few weeks ? As some of you may remember, my last attempt at giving up the dreaded weed ended after a short three-month stint, although for me, three months without my daily regular ‘fixes’ felt like an eternity, however, I did say at the time of that failure that I would give it another go when I felt the time was right, well, so far I have managed sixteen days and strangely, I am actually finding it much easier this time around, there have been very few periods where I have actually really craved my ‘fix’, perhaps it is because it is me that has made the decision and not pressure from ‘other’ external sources.
We did manage to take a trip out to Gateshead to the large ‘Metro Centre’, a large shopping complex just off the A1 and only an hour’s drive away. Now I am not normally one for shopping and so this would generally be something worse than even my worst nightmare, but after being confined on numerous days off I thought that it would be good to get back out amongst civilisation. For some inexplicable reason, Shazza wore a big smile on her face from the evening before our ‘Retail Therapy’ trip and all through the following day. I quite naively hadn’t thought about the retail therapy aspect, more a cheap day out with the treat of a long-awaited KFC lunch, and so I made a massive error and forgot to leave the ‘Girls Best Friend’ back in the van, yes the ‘Plastic Card’ !!
The large ‘Metro’ shopping complex was exactly as I had anticipated that it would be, but surprisingly I was quite enjoying just wandering in and out of the shops, stopping in the odd three, five or ten for Shazza to relieve the weight from the bank balance with a few ‘much-needed‘ essential additions to the wardrobe, whatever happened to that policy of clothing replacements we were supposed to have of ‘one in, one out‘ !! My remonstrations appeared to go unheard, or more accurately, totally ignored. I did however get my KFC lunch and it was absolutely delicious, yes I know, I am a pushover !!
We came across an entertainment show for the kids and stopped to watch it for a while, it made us think that in the very near future, with the impending arrival of our twin granddaughters, that one day we may well be one of those sets of grandparents sat watching the show. I turned to where Shazza had been stood but there was no sign of her, what shop has she now wandered into I began to think, but then I saw her, down below on the lower floor where the ‘Kids Show’ was taking place, she had joined in !!
It had been had been a good day out and we had both enjoyed the opportunity of getting away from the Campsite for a few hours but the following day it was back to ‘Elf & Elfette’ duties proper !!
With our next period of time off bringing another decent day, weather wise, we decided to tick off another ‘must do’ from our list of activities, a boat trip around the ‘Farne Islands’ from Seahouses to see the Puffins, Gannets, Cormorants and if we were lucky, the Grey Seals.
It was nice to get out again on a day off, but I have to confess at being somewhat disappointed at the lack of marine life. The sea was quite choppy, which didn’t help when trying to get decent photographs, but the Grey Seals are also quite shy and as soon as the boat got too close they submerged. On another day, at another time we may have got better viewing opportunities when it was time for them to just lay on the rocks basking in the sunshine, our trip was obviously on the wrong day at the wrong time !! As for, the Puffins, we saw just two and although there were many more Cormorants these were now, to us at least, getting to be as common as the resident Seagulls and Kittiwakes. Perhaps our expectations were far too high, last season, when we were working up on the West Coast of Scotland close to the Isle of Skye, we went on a rib trip and saw an abundance of marine life, so perhaps we had already seen the best of the best.
With the clock now ticking down on this current seasons exploration in the North East, yes, we are down to 79 days to do, or 11 weeks, or 3 more pay days, and yes we are counting down each and every one of them, there is not much left on our ‘Must Do’ list. However, just a few days ago, Chris and Sarah, presented us with our twin Granddaughters, Lily and Eva…….
Our week has just been rounded off with a Skype Video call and our first introduction to our ‘Much Awaited Arrivals‘ and very precious little bundles, well done to Mum & Dad, our granddaughters were not very talkative but I somehow suspect that that will not last for very long !! We will get to meet them in person next week when we will use our days off to travel down to see them, can’t wait !!
To round off what has been a perfect week, we also had a Skype Video call with our daughter Stacey in Australia, so, although there have been few major ‘Expeditions’ over recent weeks, there has been enough to keep us occupied.