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Travelogue

16th September 2012 - 17th October 2012

Hampshire and the Midlands
Gloucestershire
Sunday 16th September 2012
Winchcombe Camping and Caravan Club Site, Near Tewkesbury, 51 59 36 N, 01 59 39 W, (20 Miles).

I had time this morning to do some more polishing of the motorhome before leaving for the short drive to Winchcombe on the edge of the Cotswold’s. We timed our arrival just before 12 noon and managed to find a pitch facing the pool and were soon organised and it was warm enough to sit outside to drink a belated “elevenses” cup of tea and at least we have the internet now, so we spent part of the afternoon “on line” booking camp sites for the next couple of weeks, we were surprised that even at this time of the year some camp sites are fully booked, but we have managed to obtain bookings relatively close to Southampton, as we want to spend some time with Rhiain, Ian and Kura before their move to Canada in October.
Winchcombe Camping and Caravan Club Site.
Winchcombe Camping and Caravan Club Site.


Monday 17th September 2012
A relaxed day, catching up with some photographic editing, reading and polishing another section of the side panels of the motorhome, if the weather is reasonable tomorrow I may fish, Jenny did some baking read and knitted.

Tuesday 18th September 2012
With the night being very cold I did not fish today, the man in the caravan next door that was fishing was only catching small fish and it was comparatively quiet so I will save my £6.40. Having said that, If I had been fishing, I would not have been using the laptop and Jenny would not have spilt a full cup of coffee over the table and splashed the laptop (and everything else), I am now typing this on our trusty old Sony Vaio, despite wiping the laptop straightaway it does appear to have sustained some damage to the keyboard i.e. press “t” and I get “ty”, press “g” and I get “gr”, the “6” doesn’t work and the “backspace” is very intermittent. I have managed to backup the files we need and will take it to PC World for repair at the nearest opportunity.

Wiltshire
Wednesday 19th September 2012
Salisbury Caravan Club Site, 51 07 28 N, 01 38 07 W, (97 Miles).

An easy and quiet drive to Salisbury this morning and we only went wrong once. . . . Betty deciding to send us through the main street of Marlborough instead of along the main road, when we came through in the opposite direction late July I ignored her, I should have done the same today. Oh, and it did have to be market day! Luckily we have found that there is a PC World on the same shopping complex on the outskirts of Salisbury as the Tesco we were visiting. We had intended going there first but passed it on the way in, we therefore did our quick shop first, using the Tesco “app” on Jenny’s iPhone which tells us which aisle and side and shelf, if we need it, it’s the same program which Tesco use for their on-line shopping picking. It certainly speeds up the food shopping and the other benefit is we rarely purchase anything we don’t really need, like chocolate, biscuits and crisps. PC World was our next stop and Marsi was very helpful on the Service counter. It looks like the laptop will be away at least three weeks and the repair will be approximately £80, once they have completed the repair we can then arrange which store to collect it from. We were very impressed that we are able to “track” like a parcel delivery the stages of the repair, hope the system works. We also bought a new mouse while we were there, the one we have was getting past its “sell by date”, being force fed coffee didn’t help it and it’s breathed it’s last. We arrived at the Salisbury site later than we intended but found a pitch on “The Green” which is on the upper section of the camp site near the amenities that will save me struggling up the hill in the mornings when my knee is still stiff, didn’t like the name of one of the lower sections anyway, “Rams Bottom”!!!
Salisbury Caravan Club Site.
Salisbury Caravan Club Site.


Thursday 20th September 2012
Good news this morning the site manager at Black Knowl Caravan Club site at Brockenhurst our next destination rang us to say that they can now accommodate us until 5th October instead of only until the 1st October. This means we don’t have to find another camp site before Rhiain, Ian and Kura departs for Canada. We have also booked the camp site at Woodstock near Oxford for four days before returning to Lichfield for a couple of days and subject to what the physiotherapist says about my back/knee we can then plan the rest of October and November. Jenny was washing up just after lunch at the amenities building, when I spotted a Greater-spotted Woodpecker on the Electricity Pylon near us, well it was at least a wooden one and not made of steel, although being a hard wood I couldn’t see it making great inroads in “drilling” a hole, at least I managed to take a quick photograph of it to show Jenny. We spent most of the day reading and watching television and being rather lazy.

Friday 21st September 2012
At least Jenny managed to see the “pecker” today through her binoculars, it obviously wasn’t going to be beaten by the hardness of the wood. We had another lazy day, I was going to finish polishing the last pieces of the sides and back of the motorhome, however, there is wet weather forecast for Sunday when we move so I am going to wait until we reach Brockenhurst before completing it. We watched both practice sessions for the Singapore F1 Grand Prix and we are both looking forward to final practice and qualifying tomorrow before the race on Sunday, from where we both consider is the best city we have ever visited in the world.

Saturday 22nd September 2012
Between 3rd practice and qualifying today we went blackberry picking along the green lane that runs along the edge of the campsite, we did find enough for a crumble and pie, although they weren’t exactly prolific. We didn’t realise the green lane would be such a pleasant walk so decided after qualifying that we would walk along it a bit further, we managed to walk for at least 30 minutes before reaching quite a busy main road, where upon we retraced our steps to the camp site, just in time for the football results, being an Aston Villa supporter, I wished I hadn’t bothered!

Hampshire
Sunday 23rd September 2012
Black Knowl Caravan Club Site (New Forest), near Brockenhurst, 50 49 65 N, 01 35 68 W, (37 Miles).

We had hoped that the forecasted rain would not arrive until after we left Salisbury, alas, it started just after we had arrived back from our showers. We were rather worried because we had a grass pitch on a lower section of the site and with the notorious poor front wheel traction of the Fiat, we thought we may struggle to reach the gravel track, Forward thinking (who me?), I had already put the front wheels on the anti-skid mats when we first arrived and we had no problems in leaving the site. We reached the Tesco supermarket in Salisbury far too early so Jenny made a cup of coffee, whilst I read the instructions for our Sony radio, yes, I know we’ve had it installed since March, but I’ve been busy. Opening time was 10:00 am but they opened their door at 9:40 am and we had completed our shopping by 10:15 am. Having a “5p per litre” fuel coupon which we had from last time, we realised that it expired today. “Shall we just top up?” I asked, “What is fuel gauge showing?” asked Jenny, “just under ¾ full” I answered, “mmm, about 24 litres, we may as well” said Jenny. How many litres did I put in to fill it? 24 litres, clever my wife. Because of the very narrow road to the Black Knowl camp site, they operate a “one way system” those leaving must leave before 11:30 am, those arriving must not arrive before 12:00pm, we therefore stopped in a lay-by for a time, where Jenny sorted and put away the grocery’s and I busied myself by reading the sports section of the Sunday Mail. Judging our departure from the lay-by to arrive at the camp site at noon, we were thwarted by heavy rain, slow traffic through Lyndhurst and Betty’s insistence that we go a different route to that advised in the Caravan Club Handbook. The guy towing a caravan in front that we had followed for about 8 mile seemed to know his way, we followed him. When we got to the Isle of White ferry terminal at Lymington . . . . no I’m joking! We actually arrived a ½ mile from the camp site at 12:08 am and were stopped by a Caravan Club member of staff and diverted to a holding area, we then had to wait for the queue of customers to clear the actual car park at the camp site before being escorted in a 2 caravan and motorhome convoy to the entrance. I was now getting worried! The Singapore Grand Prix starts at 1:00 pm and they won’t delay it for me, whilst Jenny was in reception booking us in and getting wet, I got the television, cables and controls out ready and remained dry, luckily we found an hardstanding pitch to our liking straight away and whilst Jenny returned to reception to tell them our pitch number (and got even wetter), I plugged in the electric power cable, (getting slightly damp, Jenny had pinched my hat), switched on the television and put the kettle on. We were sitting down drinking tea and eating our lunch before the lights went out, no not our lights, the lights that signified the start of a very enjoyable Grand Prix.
Black Knowl Caravan Club Site.
Black Knowl Caravan Club Site.


Monday 24th September 2012
And it’s still raining, so much so we even debated whether we would walk down to the amenities block and shower or use our own facilities. However, the rain did diminish so we elected to use the “on site” facilities; unusually they have individual bathrooms so we were able to go in together, the advantage was obvious, I was able to get Jenny to scrub my back! Late morning Rhiain, Ian and Kura came over to visit us, Ian having smelt Jenny’s home-made Ginger cake and they spent the rest of the day with us. We went to the New Forest village of Lydhurst in the afternoon, a very popular tourist attraction with many independent shops, art galleries, cafes and restaurants. It also has a Ferrari and Maserati dealership, I had a look through the showroom window and at the cars outside in the courtyard, but even with prices as low as £79,000, I didn’t see anything I fancied, anyway, Jenny said she would still prefer a Ford Ka. We all enjoyed a nice pot of tea in a little tearoom which unusually welcomed dogs, this delighted Kura as there were 2 well behaved dogs “taking tea” and “doggie” is one of the words she has learnt. We then had a drive through parts of the New Forest we hadn’t previously seen (because Ian had missed a turn) and arrived back at the camp site just after 5:15 pm to enjoy tea and homemade Apple and Blackberry crumble and much to Ian’s delight. . . lots of custard.

Tuesday 25th September 2012
A very showery day, which we have spent relaxing in the motorhome, although Jenny has been busy walking to and fro from the laundry, well she shouldn’t have forgotten the key!

Wednesday 26th September 2012
Another very wet night and it was still raining when we got up this morning and we waited for the rain to stop before we went for our showers this morning. Guess when it started to rain heavy again? Just as I got back to the motorhome, Jenny got wet coming back, she shouldn’t have been so slow having a shower, she also got wet again when she fetched the morning paper, I kept dry preparing breakfast! Jenny did find out from the staff at reception that at present they are having to cancel bookings for the next few days as the grass pitches are so water-logged, it’s a good job we found a hardstanding one on Sunday. Late morning the Clarke family drove over once again, Ian having smelt Jenny’s home-made Lemon cake (same guy, different cake) and we went shopping with them to Hedge End a district of Southampton, they were hoping to purchase some “cold weather” clothing from a newly opened “outdoor” store, but they weren’t successful, enjoyed the “Burger King” though.

Thursday 27th September 2012
A relaxed day, Rhiain, Ian and Kura drove over for tea; it’s just a pity that the weather is so wet that it is not possible to go for a walk. Forgot to mention yesterday that after Aston Villa’s heavy Premiership defeat at Southampton, Ian decided to “rub it in” by driving past “St Mary’s” the home of “The Saints”, that’s the last time he eats any of Jenny’s homemade cake’s

Friday 28th September 2012
Another day reading and listening to music

Saturday 29th September 2012
Ian came over at 9:00 am to take us to his Mum and Dad’s house where Deanna and Brian had organised a farewell party for them before they leave for Canada next Saturday. Suffice to say we had a great time meeting all their family and friends, our son Michael, his partner Sharon and our Grandson Charlie arrived from the Midlands lunchtime, they have booked a hotel overnight and will visit us at Brockenhurst tomorrow.
* * * Thanks to Deanna and Brian for the Farewell Party * * *

Sunday 30th September 2012

We had a wonderful day yesterday; there are a lot of people that will miss them. Michael came over from Southampton this morning for breakfast with Sharon and Charlie and we had a nice time with them before they left for Staffordshire. Rhiain and Kura also arrived before lunch and it was great to have both our children and grandchildren with us for a short time, it may be some time before we are all together again.
The Morris Family.
The Morris Family.


Monday 1st October 2012
Another very wet morning (well yesterday was good so we couldn’t have two consecutive nice days) and we were annoyed to find that the showers we normally use have now been closed for the rest of the season (the season ends 19th November), evidently it’s because we are now in the low season and one pair of wardens have left. It would take too long to explain our grievance, but we have complained to the site manager. Despite the rain we decided to walk to Brockenhurst to purchase some ingredients for tonight’s tea; according to the directions given to us by reception it would take us about 35 minutes across the common to reach the village, it actually took us 54 minutes to reach Tesco, I know because I was “playing with “Maps3D” the GPS App on Jenny’s iPhone. We thought we would take short cut coming back and cut diagonally over the common, it was quicker, however, our feet were much wetter, even though for the duration of our walk we didn’t need to have worn our wet weather jackets, although we needed to leave our walking boots out in the sun to dry when we arrived back.
New Forest Trail.
New Forest Trail.


Now I will bore you, we ascended 100.9 feet, descended 101.7 feet, it took us 1.39.04 hours at an average speed of 2.2 mph and we walked 3.98 mile, Jen’s now taken the iPhone off me! Rhiain, Ian and Kura arrived for tea, Jambalaya was on the menu, one of the family’s favourite dishes, Ian had already told Rhiain that he wouldn’t like it, then had a second helping and then some more, (that was my lunch tomorrow), still I forgave him, he did bring me an almost full bottle of “Gentleman Jack” a rare Tennessee Whiskey (yes, with an e) which he is not able to take with him to Canada, which I thought was a fair exchange except that he still devoured homemade scones, with butter, jam and . . . . fresh cream.

Tuesday 2nd October 2012
A relaxed day.

Wednesday 3rd October 2012
Rhiain came over mid-morning to take Jenny to Ian’s house to help with some packing and organising, Jenny is so good at that, she used to pack my suitcase when I went away on Ford trips, trouble was that coming back I always needed two plastic bags as well to put exactly the same amount in! Well I was left to my own devices so I relaxed by reading and dozing, I have a heavy cold with a cough at the moment, so I am suitably medicated, no. I didn’t touch the Whiskey (with an e). They arrived back just before tea, which was a shame, I was hoping to have the Gammon to myself, instead I had to share it, still, I didn’t have to cook it.

Thursday 4th October 2012
Tensions and testosterone levels are rising, (no, not mine), the Red deer rutting season has arrived and during the night the stags in the forest were constantly bellowing out an echoing roar, which sounded like something between a chain saw and a burp; two Tawny Owls were “hooting” at each other close by and I was coughing, it was not a quiet night! We rang PC World at Salisbury to see if the laptop had been returned, it was due back before Friday, the worse than useless salesman suggested we ring “KnowHow”. Problem! It is now not due back until Saturday, we leave on Friday, however the girl at the repair centre has re-addressed it to a shop in Sutton Coldfield which we will be closer to next week. Rhiain, Ian and Kura came over for a farewell tea, Rhiain’s favourite dinner, Roast Lamb with roasted vegetables, plus Ian’s favourite pudding Spotted Dick and Custard. I look forward to Rhiain cooking us a meal when we visit, I wonder if it will be Moose, I remember Jenny and I eating Elk at the hotel at Grand Canyon village, the antlers were tough! It was obviously an emotional time for us all, when they said their good-byes, they leave for Gatwick airport tomorrow evening for the early flight to Calgary and onward to Regina in Saskatchewan on Saturday morning. I will finish for tonight I’m getting emotional.

Oxfordshire
Friday 5th October 2012
Bladon Chains Caravan Club Site, near Woodstock, 51 50 35 N, 01 20 48 W, (108 Miles).

I thought we were going to have a very wet drive to Oxfordshire today after such a wet night and the promise of even more rain and high winds luckily it was dry when we left at 10:15 am. We weren’t so lucky when we attempted to leave the village of Brockenhurst to join the main road, we weren’t able to use the first left as Betty wanted us to, due to a 6 foot 6 inch width limit and the second left turn would have taken us through a raging torrent of a ford (which was completely dry on Monday) which we weren’t prepared to risk. We did eventually leave the village, in the wrong direction!!!! And we needed to do a “u” turn in a lay-by to put us on the correct road. Tesco was our first stop to purchase groceries, we know this store now so we weren’t long doing our shop. Pity the laptop wasn’t back in time to pick up from PC World as we pass the store on the way out of the Retail Centre. We arrived at Bladon Chains at 2:30 pm, unfortunately there wasn’t any hard standing pitches left so we had to risk a grass one, Jenny managed to find the perfect one, which for whatever reason seemed dryer and less muddy than most of the others and only needing “Brian’s” ramps (a pair that my brother made for us which are just 2 inches high) to level the motorhome, I managed to reverse on to them without losing traction. This campsite is situated on the Blenheim Estate with some magnificent trees around the site and just outside the palace grounds and from a corner of the site you can walk to Bladon Church the site of Churchill’s grave which we may visit while we are here.
Bladon Chains Caravan Club Site.
Bladon Chains Caravan Club Site.


* * * Bon Voyage Rhiain, Ian & Kura, we will miss you XX * * *

Saturday 6th October 2012

Another very wet night and for the second time in just a couple of weeks when Jenny went to reception for our morning paper the site wardens were ringing people to dissuade them from visiting because the grass pitches are too wet to be used. We managed to ring Rhiain before they boarded the aircraft this morning and we have found a web site on which we can view the flights progress over to Canada which is very interesting, Kura was busy looking out of the window near the boarding gate at the Transat A330 they are flying on and we had a photograph of her being very interested in the television in the back of the aircraft seat, I hope they have CBB’s on. Grand Prix qualifying highlights lunchtime which we enjoyed and surprise, surprise it was warm enough to sit outside and enjoy the fresh air, I read my photography magazines (last months) and listened to Pink Floyd and Jenny read her Val McDermid book which she has had for at least 6 months (to gory for me). Good News, PC World rang to say that the laptop was ready for collection??? I had a very nasty thought and asked which store they were ringing from “Salisbury”, was the reply. So despite telling 4 people at PC World/ KnowHow that we
wanted the laptop delivered to Sutton Coldfield it is now 75 miles away in Salisbury. Having spent a great deal of time “ranting” at PC World evidently the laptop will now have to be returned to the repair centre at Newark before being sent to Sutton Coldfield, to say the least we are not happy, watch this space.

Sunday 7th October 2012
A relaxed day, unusually we bought a Sunday newspaper and as well as reading that plus our magazines and books we watched highlights of the Japanese F1 Grand Prix and our favorite quiz “The Chase”. We also spoke to Rhiain this morning at the “Days Inn” in Calgary, they had a long day yesterday but everything went well and they were warmly greeted by a manager and his wife of the company Ian will be working for, they will start on Tuesday (thanksgiving holiday in Canada tomorrow) organizing banks, driving licences, etc. etc.

Monday 8th October 2012
That was really weird this morning, An WW11 air raid siren started to blast out for a short time at about 7:30am and I definitely wasn’t dreaming because Jenny heard it as well. We did hear an aircraft but that’s not surprising as we are only a mile from Oxford Airport, didn’t hear a bomb drop though, so it was either a false alarm or the bomb was a dud! It was another very wet night although it had changed to a drizzle this afternoon when I decided to walk to St Martin’s church in Bladon about a mile away from the campsite to visit the grave of Sir Winston Churchill. The churchyard was very well kept and a great many people visit from all over the world, I picked a time when the coach parties had left, Churchill’s grave itself is very unassuming.

Staffordshire
Tuesday 9th October 2012
Cathedral Grange Touring Caravan Park, Lichfield, 52 41 85 N, 01 50 58 W, (86 Miles).

An easy run this morning to Lichfield, we thought it was going to be wet but thankfully this morning (for a change) the weather was dry. We were disappointed when we got to Cathedral Grange to find that they have increased their overnight cost for a motorhome over 6 metres to £18, whilst the price for those below 6 metres and caravans remains at £14. Vanessa actually only charged us £14 per night because “we didn’t know” but we cannot see the logic of charging more for “our” longer length, it’s not a RV and more energy efficient than many older motorhomes and caravans. Although it’s convenient we will now only stay there when we need to…their loss. I went to the amenities just after we arrived and spotted a Green Woodpecker, I had forgotten to tell Jenny I had just remembered to tell her a while later and low and behold I looked up and it was less than 4 metres from the front of the motorhome, the best view either of us have ever had of one. I even managed to carefully open the side window and take a decent photograph of it. Michael, Sharon and Charlie came over at tea time to say “hello” (he forgot to bring our post) and stayed for about an hour, we then spent the rest of the evening watching television.
Green Woodpecker.
Green Woodpecker.


Wednesday 10th October 2012
A 40 minute walk into Lichfield for a day of appointments, Jenny was first with a fasting blood test at Greenhill Medical Centre, we arrived early and James Summers the Phlebotomist was waiting for her, they think they are related, both have an Admiral George Summers in their respective family trees. Specsavers were next to drop in my spectacles which a lens fell out of a few weeks ago, we will be back there shortly. Breakfast beckoned as I had forsaken mine as well this morning and we went to the Causeway Café for a “Full English”, we must admit we thought it wasn’t quite as good as in the past, Jenny thinks the ownership might have changed, there weren’t as many mushrooms on the plate! Back to Specsavers for our eye tests, Jenny’s test was a bit special as it was an eye test prior to a cataract operation, however Praful has been looking after her/our eyes now for over 20 years, he is as excited as Jenny that she is shortly to have the operation and is looking forward to “seeing” (good, eh) the result. Praful did my test next, I know that my eyesight isn’t as good of late and he confirmed it, I need new lenses. Helena sorted me out with what I required, unfortunately Specsavers now use Pentax as their preferred lens supplier and I don’t like them, it has therefore cost me £329 for the lenses I want. After leaving the opticians at 12:20 pm we had a great deal of time to kill before my Physiotherapist appointment at 4:30 pm, we went to our respective mobile phone suppliers next, Orange was first to check on the best cost effective tariff on Jenny’s iPhone for calling Canada, the assistant wasn’t much help and suggested we contact the Customer Services direct, then to the O2 shop to see if I could upgrade our internet dongle to 3G, the assistant in the shop was much more helpful and we left with at least three options. Still having plenty of time before my appointment we went to the library, I picked up a Biography on Bernie Ecclestone just to pass the time away, I got quite enthralled with it and decided to borrow it for a period (we still have our Staffordshire tickets). Our favorite café was the next stop “The Damn Fine Café” in Bird Street, because we had a cooked breakfast we decided we would ”just” have a Packington Pork baguette, bad news, they had run out and not wanting the beef dinner we didn’t stay; instead we walked up to Tesco and had a Latte and Muffin in Costa Coffee, (not much difference). Then a short walk to the Samuel Johnson Hospital for my appointment with June my Physiotherapist, still rather early we read in the waiting room before being seen, the result? More exercises and I have another appointment for November. Our flu jabs were last on today’s appointments list and we walked back to Greenhill Health Centre, We went into the room together, Jenny went first, my thinking that if she screamed I wouldn’t bother with mine, I also insisted because I had flu in January, I didn’t want a “value” or “second-hand injection this year", but a “premier” one, the nurse agreed and said she had purchased it from Marks & Spencer!!!

West Midlands
Thursday 11th October 2012
Kingsbury Camping & Caravan Club Site, Kingsbury, 52 34 09 N, 01 42 21 W, (17 Miles).

Leaving Lichfield mid-morning our first stop was our storage unit to drop off a few items that Rhiain had borrowed from us at different times and obviously no longer required, we also collected our autumn duvet and a few winter clothes while we were there. Asda was our next stop for groceries and fuel before continuing to Kingsbury and we were lucky enough to pitch on one of the hardstandings we normally use, by 12:30pm we had the kettle on and were eating our lunch.

Friday 12th October 2012
A relaxed day.

Saturday 13th October 2012
First into the amenities building this morning, well it was 4:40 am, it was an early alarm call to watch qualifying of the Korean F1 Grand Prix. Must admit to feeling tired for the rest of the day and being rather lazy. Same again tomorrow?

Sunday 14th October 2012
Not so early getting up this morning, but it was still before 6:00 am, there was only me and the rabbits about, not surprised everybody else was still in bed. . .there was a frost on the ground, the temperature was just above freezing outside. Jenny and I spent the morning after the Korean Grand prix had finished deciding where we are going to next, made difficult by PC World having messed up (I’m being polite) our laptop delivery, hopefully (with fingers crossed) we should have it back on Tuesday and we will then go to the Cannock Chase Camping and Caravan Club site before going to the Lake District for 3 weeks, just hope the Autumn colours haven’t disappeared before we arrive. Unusually we have pre-booked our stops up there (on 3 different Caravan Club sites as at least part of the time it is school half-term holidays, it’s also an “exploratory” trip for when Brian and Judy our friends from New Zealand come over next year.

Monday 15th October 2012
A move this morning to another pitch on the campsite, we could only book 4 days the site is very busy this week as the Motorhome & Caravan show is on at the NEC. However we needed to stay an extra night to hopefully (I keep saying hopefully) collect the laptop from PC World at Sutton Coldfield tomorrow. We were hoping that there may have been a cancellation but unfortunately there wasn’t, however, Jackie the manager has found a firm grass pitch for us to use on another part of the site. Very comfortable it is too, but not one we would chose in the summer at is very close to the children’s playground, pitches we normally avoid. Graham the Assistant Site Manager was telling me that there are 58 units arriving today and a similar number tomorrow, no wonder there was little room for us. We had a nice surprise last night when Rhiain rang from Canada, she has now organised a new iPhone so we were both able to use “Facetime” and she gave us a guided video tour of their home, we have also looked on Google Earth at their house (a mobile home or as they say over their “trailer”) which is the accommodation that Ian’s new employers have provided until they find a property of their own. Being able to view both the interior and exterior of their home and Rhiain, Ian and Kura, certainly shrinks the miles.
Kingsbury Camping and Caravan Club Site.
Kingsbury Camping and Caravan Club Site.


Staffordshire
Tuesday 16th October 2012
Cannock Chase Camping & Caravan Club Site, Near Rugeley, 52 43 62 N, 01 56 67 W, (32 Miles).

We left Kingsbury at 12:00pm, leaving it as late as possible so that we would give more time for PC world to have received our laptop and we drove off the flat grass pitch with no trouble. Our first stop was at the Texaco Star garage at Kingstanding to top up with LPG, we can’t believe that the last time we filled up was in March and we still had 6 litres left in the 22 litre capacity, using just 16 litres in 8 months at a cost £16.77 is to say the least economical . . . if only Jenny hadn’t made all the home-made cakes, it would have lasted longer!!! Next stop was PC World and STILL they haven’t received our laptop, despite it supposed to be in store today. John on the “KnowHow” desk was extremely helpful (and embarrassed), he realised our disgust when even he spent over 30 minutes talking to the customer service team. The upshot is that it “may” be delivered either tomorrow or Thursday. If it doesn’t arrive then it gives us a further problem as we are booked onto a campsite in the Lake District then and Cannock are fully booked on Thursday night. A further problem is that there is a very limited phone signal here to contact anybody, i.e. PC World, we will have to walk into the woods the other side of the road like we did in April.

Wednesday 17th October 2012
A wet morning and we stayed within the motorhome reading, no newspaper service at this camp site, thus, no crossword, so I can’t leave the easy answers for Jenny to complete. I did think that we may hear the rutting of Red Deer during the night but other than a Jay “squealing” at dawn that was the only sound we heard. We went for a walk in the afternoon to hopefully obtain a mobile phone signal from a higher position, we were half successful, managing to make one phone call before it “dropped out”. Luckily, late afternoon in the motorhome we managed to get a mobile signal (albeit spasmodic and poor) and rang PC World, John rang us back shortly afterwards and good news and not before time the laptop is in the store, we will pick it up in the morning.