10th December 2018 We’re off!

During the month of November while Angela was at work I had a chance to meet up with family and friends. Also it gave me plenty of time to sort the van out ready for our travels.

We are very fortunate to be able to store things at my mum’s house. While we are both working we bring various items back to the van and before we set off on our travels we lighten the load by taking any unwanted items back again. We are only allowed to weigh a total of 4,000kg which is not a lot of payload really but we’re pretty much there!

After saying our farewells in Oxford we set off and have just spent the weekendP1260166 with friends in Chichester. We all had big hugs on arrival as they have recently lost Hamish their lovely little Scottish Terrier. Angela and I grew very fond of him and we were fortunate to have had the pleasure of him visiting us on many occasions during our friendship. Not only here in the UK but also while we were all in Spain together. He will be deeply missed.

We chatted for ages before having lunch followed by warm mince pies and coffee!

Isabel cooked us a lovely meal Saturday evening that was accompanied by Prosecco, red wine and more chatting and laughing.

We eventually went back to our van for the night but Angela and I did not sleep that much. Partly due to the gusting winds, and partly because I didn’t position the van head on to the direction of the wind that we knew was coming!

One thing us motorhomers keep an eye on is the weather, especially when gusting winds are forecast. Being side swiped by 30mph + winds does not lead to a good nights sleep Sad smile

Sunday morning we went for a stroll and breakfast at Chichester Harbour followed by an afternoon of snoozing and a bit of sorting in the garage. Al and Isabel are kindly looking after our car while we are away and I managed to sort out a few more storage boxes of items we can leave until our return. Hopefully we will be able to bring some wine back now I have sorted out more space.

Our last evening with them was spent over a lovely meal at a local pub called The Walnut Tree. With all of their Christmas decorations up, seasonal music playing in the background and tables full of people eating and laughing it made for a lovely atmosphere. My rib eye steak was amazing as were the other meals.

This morning Isabel kindly invited us to a breakfast of warm croissants, homemade jam (of which we have been given a large jar), fruit, fruit juice and coffee. A perfect start to the day before we head off to Folkestone.

After breakfast we stowed the last few items and drained down before saying our goodbyes. We left them at 10:15am and had a fairly straightforward journey. We filled up with diesel on the last service station before the campsite here in Folkestone and it should last us until we get to Germany.

After 2 hrs 45 mins driving time we arrived at the campsite. Black Horse Farm CAMC (Caravan and Motorhome Club) is an ideal place to stay if you are going on the Eurotunnel. Angela does one last load of washing and drying so that we are clear for the start of our adventures. It is only a 15 minute drive to the check in area so there should be no traffic problems to worry about.

We are on the 08:51 am train tomorrow and our first stop is Bruges, Belgium……………watch this space.

IMG_20181209_102346 IMG_20181209_102417IMG_20181209_121719 IMG_20181209_191441 IMG_20181209_195138IMG_20181209_195244

Posted in 2018 | 1 Comment

April- October 2018 Work!

Well, as usual this is the period that our website is inactive. I may add the odd post if something interesting happens. Or if I get the urge to write something up after looking back through my diary.

This website is mainly for us to look back on in the future to remind us of our travels and adventures in our motorhome (HMS ROBYN).

I am no IT expert or professional blogger and it is difficult to keep a website as there are so many things to consider. Who is reading it, what to write about, how often should I right and how much detail etc. etc.

We have a few followers and we know that family and friends dip in and out of it. If you would like to follow us then feel free to. If you would like to comment or ask any questions then that option is available.

The website should become more active as we set off on our travels mid December. We are having Christmas with family in Germany but  may stop off on route. We are not booking anything this winter and we are going to see where the wind blows us!

 

I am happy to be working as an assistant summer gardener at Christ Church College, Oxford this year. My contract ends on the 26th October and as Angela is working an extra month it means I have plenty of time to sort the van out ready for our travels.

We are both off until next April Smile

I will add some pictures of my time at Christ Church in the future but for now that is all.

Posted in 2018 | Leave a comment

23rd-24th March 2018 Cambridge

We stowed everything after breakfast and got the van ready for travelling to Cambridge. This will be our last destination before we head back to Oxford, and before we set off we had a farewell cup of coffee with Billie and Shaun and said our goodbyes.

Cambridge is just over 80 miles away so we had a leisurely drive to  the campsite in Cherry Hinton. It took us 1hr 45mins and as we were a bit early we had to wait until the 12 O’clock arrival time. We have been here a few times and it is handy for visiting Cambridge. You can walk, cycle or as we did on Friday get the No.3 bus opposite The Robin Hood pub right into the city centre (£8.60 return).

It is a very well kept site, is very quiet at this time of year and there is a great running route around the old chalk pit site just over the road from the campsite entrance.

We headed straight for the famous Fitzbillies for our breakfast. Full English for me and Angela had the vegetarian option.

With our bellies full we decided to have a bit of a wander around the city centre and some of the shops. The only thing I really needed was a new pair of running trainers. After doing a bit of research I decided that I wanted the Salomon SpeedCross 4 which I managed to get. Even better, after some discussion with the shop assistant I managed to get some discount Smile

We were getting a bit chilly so we decided to head back to the van to chill out for the rest of the day.

I gave my sister a call when we got back  to ask how my mum was as she had had a fall and was going to the Dr’s. She has damaged her right arm and cracked some ribs. Ouch!

Later that afternoon I had a phone call from Christ Church College, Oxford to confirm that I had a job interview this coming Monday. Fingers crossed.

20180323_112719  20180323_114501  20180323_12094420180323_112018  20180323_112326  Snowy Farr Sculpture20180323_152316

Posted in 2018 | Leave a comment

16th-21st March 2018 Great Yarmouth

As Angela was not back to work until 3rd April we decided to take the opportunity to go Great Yarmouth.

From the train in Folkestone we drove the 188 miles and with a stop for lunch it took us approximately four hours. It always amazes us when we come back from driving in Spain and some parts of France how busy and congested the roads are here in the UK. The Dartford Tunnel was a first for us and that was very busy!

We wanted to visit family in the area and see our old managers that we worked with for the Caravan Club in Brecon, Wales.

Hollie (my niece) and her partner Tom knew that we were coming to stay but it was a total surprise For Billie and Shaun. Hopefully a pleasant one!

It was really nice to see everyone as we do not get much chance these days to have a catch20180317_133437 up so we really made the most of it. As we were without our car Hollie and Tom picked us up a couple of times. We had a day driving around the beautiful countryside ending up in Norwich followed by an evening meal with Billie and Shaun.  The next day (Sunday) Hollie and Tom picked us up and we went for a lovely carvery at The Boathouse. The place was very busy as they have a great reputation and the food was very good. They also do a good selection of real ales so after being in Spain for a few months the two that I had were well received.

20180318_194244 20180318_151412 20180317_212629 20180317_175827

On Tuesday as family and friends were all back at work Angela and I decided to get the bus into 20180320_121543the centre of Norwich. It was only £10 for a group day ticket. We wanted to have a good look around the city but the main for our visit was because I had booked myself in for the full works at Swagger & Jacks they have a great reputation. The shop is well stocked with their own brand products and the service is excellent.

20180320_134807

My appointment was at 12:30 pm so Angela had to  amuse herself for about an hour while I was being pampered. Norwich is a shop-a-holics delight! There are some great independent shops as well as the usual suspects you will find in any other major city in the UK. The Lanes are particularly nice as is the market.

180320_053525_8

180320_053525_2

I was looked after by Matthew who is one of their master barbers. We had a chat about what hairstyle I wanted and what was the best way to trim and shape my beard. The whole experience, especially the traditional cut throat shave was a real treat. I only wish that they were a bit nearer to, or had a branch in Oxford!

 

After my treat we were peckish so once Angela and I met up again we went to Bill’s Norwich. We only had a snack because were are going to Billie and Shaun’s this evening for a meal and a chat.

20180320_114652 (2)  20180320_114647  20180320_114835 (2)

Our last day as we are heading to Cambridge in the morning. We got up early and had breakfast. Bagels, topped with cream cheese and smoked salmon, fruit juice and a caffettiere of coffee.

After breakfast Angela did a couple of loads of washing and drying then tidied the inside of the van (her domain), I washed the outside of the van and sorted the garage out (my domain) ready for the off.

After our chores we went to see Billie and Shaun to collect Betty as we were going for a stroll along the beach towards Caister. We first met her in 2015 and she was a very nervous dog. It is now 2018 and she is still a very nervous dog but at least she is used to us and we are able to take her out.  We didn’t take Peggy as she cannot walk that far. 

We went as far as the lifeboat station at Caister and then a stroll around the town before returning. We stopped off for a pint and a packet of crisps at the Haven Holiday Park.

20180321_153214 20180321_150013 20180321_150151

Posted in 2018 | Leave a comment

16th March 2018 Eurotunnel Calais-UK

Today we are heading for Great Yarmouth via the Train. It is just under 50 miles and normally takes us 1.5 hours.

Posted in 2018 | Leave a comment