All quiet on the Western Front

I have installed Skype onto my PC in the study, onto Sarah’s laptop  and also my mobile (android) phone so that we can keep in touch. The idea came from Joan and Phil (in Italy) and I have rung them a couple of times, but since then I have installed a webcam and used it when calling Sarah. Last night I noticed that Chris Tippets, an old friend from College was on-line I video-called him. Unfortunately, his webcam was broken so he had the joy of seeing me. We chatted for nearly an hour. While on the subject of College friends, Sue was listening to the radio and heard Andy Perkins on a phone-in show about education. I listened to what he had to say, then sent him an email. He replied straight away informing me that he had now retired and he was missing the staff and kids after just 2 weeks. He was back on the radio again today, perhaps he fancies a new career.

Sarah and Nan managed to survive the week together, but the 2 hour daily journey to Sheffield was tiring for Sarah and she also picked up a nasty cold with a hacking cough. Lee came up on Friday to visit her and the 3 of them went out to lunch at the Royal Elephant. Sue and I drove up to Thurcroft on Saturday (after I had watched Ireland v South Africa) to help move Sarah into the Pinnacles. As the car was rammed with stuff (including 2 boxes of shoes!!) only Sarah and I made the 1st journey. There were a lot of students checking in at the same time so she had to queue to get her keys. We borrowed a trolley to transport her gear into the 2nd storey room that is to be hers for the year.  It didn’t take long and I was soon driving back to pick Sue and Nan up. I stayed at Nan’s for an hour so that Sarah would have time to put some of her stuff away before setting off with Sue and Nan. Sue made her bed for her, I installed her laptop onto the network and Nan watched, bemused. Sarah had already met her next door neighbour, who had also not long arrived.  We stayed for around half an hour before leaving.

We didn’t go far. I drove down the road, around the roundabout and parked in the Hilton Hotel next to the canal marina. There was a cafe there that gave a splendid view of Sarah’s room. Our intention was to have a meal and then drive back to Thurcroft. But, they were getting ready for a party and weren’t doing food. We drove to Whiston and tried The Golden Ball (pub), but they couldn’t fit us in to eat for another 2 hours so we went to the Sitwell Arms and had a very nice meal before returning to Thurcroft and bed.

I woke up and 6.45am and went quietly downstairs to watch England v Georgia (it was a win). After breakfast Sue and I said goodbye to Nan as we were going to see Sarah and then drive home. We took a bottle of milk, a kettle and a Hoover as they were needed. Sarah had been out on the town with her new friends and looked a little tired. It was a sunny morning so we had a walk into the City, we walked as far as the Moor (shopping street), it brought back lots of memories and Sarah listened very patiently to me waxing lyrical about my youth.

On the way back we stopped and did some food shopping for Sarah. Just 5 minutes away from the Pinnacles are quite a few cheap mini-markets and we filled four bags full of rubbish food that students eat. It was interesting to note that she took very close notice of the price of things, not seen that before in the last 18 years! We had lunch in the cafe that we had tried the night before, very pleasant, we will go there again. After filling our daughter with the last proper food she will have for a while we walked back taking a small detour to the sweet shop across the road. After escorting her to her room we said our goodbyes and left for Harborough.

Last Friday was curry night with a difference. No Sarah (Sheffield) and no Jamie (making Bolognese for Harley at his place) but we did have the Rothwells and a guest. Charlotte’s friend, Christina came as she and Charlotte were helping out at the Rugby Club that night and Christina didn’t have a car (she owned the car that Charlotte had crashed into, it’s one way to make friends!) After the meal I went to the Club to watch the Veterans play Leicestershire police in a friendly game, with a final score of 12:12, I suppose it was.

Today, I counted up the bar takings from the Club. Gary the bar steward has gone on holiday to Corfu and on Friday morning he had posted the paying in book through the letter box (before we were awake).  Luckily as I am telepathic I knew what he wanted me to do. Charlotte dropped of the takings on Sunday night. I banked just over £3000. I then chopped logs. At 1pm I drove over to Jamie’s place to supervise some workmen fixing his windows, but as soon as I arrived, they finished and left. I spent the rest of the day again cutting logs in readiness for the winter (I have a lot, and I know where there is loads more).

I am planning to visit David in Bulgaria on Saturday. He has quite a few jobs for me. I am looking forward to it. Genya flew back to the UK on Saturday to sort things out at the Unit and David has stayed to complete the restoration work started last year. I think Genya has come back for the winter.

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