All gone.

The title says it all. Now that Sarah has returned to Uni. Sue and I are on our own.

One afternoon Charlotte, Sarah, Ellis and I went Geo-caching between Rothwell and Desborough. Sarah has been meeting up with Charlotte quite regularly and finding caches all over Harborough and this time they invited me to come along. I had been out in the wilds of Leicestershire on my bike and Sarah had got fed up on waiting for me so she drove over to Rothwell herself and waited for me to get back home and then I drove over to meet them. The first cache was at the end of a lovely walk through some woods. It took some finding,and much to Sarah’s annoyance, Charlotte swooped on it. The next cache involved a short drive and then a long walk accompanied for part of it by some very inquisitive, hungry and pushy horses. We failed to find the 3rd and final cache as it had been deposited on the bank of a stream that had clearly been in flood during the past few weeks and we guessed that it was now way down stream and gone.

A few days later Sarah and I went Geo-caching again up to the Canal basin. It was well hidden, but after solving the clues I managed to find it ( I was really chuffed). Water had got inside and the note-book was rather wet so I took the cache home, dried it out and then took it back. That afternoon I loaded my GPS with all the caches in the local area and resolved to find them all.

On Sunday Sue, Charlotte, Jamie , Sarah and I attended the christening of Ethan Johnson (Jim & Brigitte’s grandson). The church was off Knighton Road in Leicester and the priest was marvelous. It was a Catholic service and he explained each of the parts of the service and had a very entertaining manner which kept us all non-Catholics interested. There was a lovely buffet at the Cricketers in Grace Road. The room it was held in had a magnificent view over the cricket pitch of Leicestershire County Cricket ground.

Photo: Lovely christening xxx

I have moved the Wifi router from my study into the lounge. BT wanted £205 to do it! I bought a 25m extension cable off ebay for £2.39 and a 20mm X 400mm masonry bit from Screwfix for £6.10, got Nigel to bring over his heavy-duty drill and drilled holes in the relevant walls and connected it all up the new position. Job done, works perfectly, up yours BT!!!! However, just before Christmas I tested the best position for the router by moving it to various locations around the house, one of those spots was upstairs and it involved disconnecting the house alarm system (I needed the socket it was connected to). Though I put the alarm circuit plug back in the socket I failed to switch it on (I do that sort of thing nowadays). No problem until well after Christmas when the failing internal battery triggered an alarm at 6am. Luckily Sue and I didn’t hear it as only the external alarm was triggered. It woke Sarah up who then woke us (better than a klaxon going off out side you bedroom!), so I duly disconnected the sirens (internal & external). On the way back to sleep I noticed that most of our neighbours had their bedroom light on (must be getting up early to go to work, I hoped).

Photo: Cutie pied my siblings cars up :-) think I might get a telling off from my brotherPhoto: Cutie pied my siblings cars up :-) think I might get a telling off from my brother

As you can see, Sarah has personalised her Ka with eyelashes. She also did Jamie’s (I don’t think he knew).

Sarah returned to Sheffield on Monday afternoon after first visiting Charlotte to say goodbye. As soon as she arrived at her digs, we got a phone call to inform us that she had left a folder in her bedroom and could we post it to her (Sue did it this morning). That afternoon Sue and I went to Jamie’s for tea. He had made a very nice lasagna and so far there have been no ill effects. We asked if it could be a regular thing each Monday, but he just smiled sweetly. Sue got a steam carpet cleaner for Christmas and this afternoon I went over to Jamie’s and cleaned a stain under a radiator in his flat. It worked very well and removed it in no time at all.

It has taken until the 9th of January for me to get around to connecting the house alarm system up again. The SIM card in the main console had expired, so I had the palaver of contacting O2 to reactivate it which they gladly did, but the credit on it had mysteriously disappeared (I should have guessed). It now all works as it should do, until I get around to disconnecting it again!

The NHS sent me a letter a couple of weeks ago, the gist of it went like this: Now that you are really, really old we would like to check up on how healthy you are so that we can advise the government on when they can stop paying your pension (was that a bit too cynical?). I attended the ‘check-up’  on Friday, disappointingly for Mr Cameron, blood pressure was spot on, body mass index was spot on, heart rate was slower than normal (and in line with a gold medal decathlete, but the nurse said it only indicated that I was quite fit, but as she was holding my hand at the time and I knew what she meant!). I also  gave a syringe full of blood and will get the results from that in a couple of weeks time.

Sarah is applying for Camp America and sent me her Personal Statement to have a look at. I hope she is successful as I am sure that she will have a brilliant time. Fingers crossed.

On Sunday Nan treated Sue, Jamie and I to Sunday lunch at The Bell. It has changed ownership several times over the last few years and is presently and up-market Indian restaurant. The two course lunch was excellent, and like Jamie I rather pigged out and probably unlike Jamie I couldn’t eat anything  else for the rest of the day.

This morning we woke up to the first snow of the year. It made my morning bike ride more interesting. I stopped to photograph a herd of gypsy ponies in a field , but it was so cold the camera refused to work.


Tomorrow Sue and I are taking Nan to Wales to visit her sister and see the gravestone of her mother that she has paid to have erected, we are also taking the opportunity to visit some of Sue’s relatives and some friends of mine. More snow is forecast and we have booked a hotel so we shall attempt to get there!

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