The beginning of our year off was spent in England catching up with family and friends
A relaxing time in England
We have been enjoying the last few days in England.
The first week was spent relaxing at my mum’s house, eating traditional English food and generally taking it easy. We also had a traditional pub lunch with one of my sister’s and family.
My mum lives close to the New Forest and about 1km from the beach.
Mai and I started each day with a 10 km walk which included some time at the beach. The weather was dry and warm every day which was a real bonus.
We also had a nice walk in the New Forest with good friends.
After a week at my mum’s we took the train to Norwich which is where I lived before moving away from England.
Norwich is about 4 and a 1/2 hours away by train from New Milton. It’s an easy journey – one train to London, cross London on the Tube (subway) and then another train to Norwich.
My mum only lives 10 minutes from the train station which is really convenient and some friends picked us up from the railway station in Norwich and took us to their place. Whalers and Kelly are friends which I have known for almost 30 years.
Friday night out
Friday night was a special night because we had a football team reunion with 7 of us coming together. Seven was about the number of pints I drank of beer I think.
Fortunately we had eaten well before going out – fish and chips from the Stafford Grill, one of the best chip shops in Norwich. It was a good value night with lots of stories coming out from when we used to play football together in the 1990s. We are all getting older and were comparing notes on our health – two heart attacks, three hip replacements just for starters!:)
Saturday morning I was up early and I went for a good long walk with my old mate, Whalers, and his dog. I’m not a huge lover of dogs, but Harry is a trusty one and the morning walk is a good habit that we have formed whenever we stay with our friends.
Whalers kindly dropped us at other friends in the countryside, Grazzle and Helen. I shared a house for a couple of years in the 1990s with Grazzle before he married Helen. We had a pretty lively time when we were housemates. Lunch was followed by a good walk in the countryside before stopping at their local pub for a couple of beers .
A traditional Aussie dinner ensued. Grazzle is a native of Australia and Saturday is barbecue day! No complaints there.
An enjoyable last full day in England
Up early on Sunday and Grazzle and banged out a quick 30km ride before breakfast.
After breakfast Grazzle dropped us at Diss railway station where we caught the first of two trains to Cambridge.
Our chauffeur service continued as my brother picked us up from near the station and took us to his house about 20 minutes away.
The weather was good again so we went for a walk and stopped off for a quick pint before returning to his place
Pizza and beers closed the weekend.
Luckily on Monday morning my sister in law was going into her office in Cambridge and dropped us off at the railway station. The traffic getting there reminded me of how horrible it is to be in England sometimes.
The train from Cambridge to Stansted Airport only took 30 minutes and was the last time we will be using our Two Travel Together railcards. The annual cards run out in October.