Wednesday 16 July 2014 – Settle

We decided to have a bit of a lazy day today, which was just as well as it rained for much of it.

First job was to contact the poet’s dad to wish him a happy birthday, but he was out when we called and we didn’t know when we’d have a half-decent signal again. So we left a message just in case.

The day had started with a bit of a lie in, then we drove up to where we’d seen the wheatears so we could take pictures. They were a little elusive but the poet did snap some meadow pipits. We drove up and down three times and parked up a few times, but we couldn’t get those wheatears. He did get a red grouse, though, and spent quite some time getting photographs of that. Quite a scoop, we thought, until we drove into a bit of a dip – and there was a small flock of them, probably a large clutch.

We drove into Sedbergh to top up supplies and then headed out to Settle so we could have lunch at Ye Olde Naked Man Café. I had a gammon, cheese and pineapple baguette melt while he had two Yorkshire puddings with Cumberland sausages, gravy, apple sauce and sage and onion stuffing. Then we really pushed the boat out and had a cream tea – fruit scones with jam and fresh cream and a lovely pot of tea each.

It was quite late by the time we got back and we didn’t feel like eating much else, so we watched the drizzle some more before watching The Woman In Black on a very pixelating television, we think caused by the inclement weather. We also managed to reach the poet’s dad and wish him that happy birthday before turning in.

Not many pictures today:

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Red grouse. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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Meadow pipit. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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Small flock of red grouse. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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Settle. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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Settle. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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Tuesday 15 July 2014 – Dent Station to Hawes to Hardraw Force to Sedbusk

After a relatively early night (apx 11pm …) we were disturbed by the dog barking at nothing, the poet’s throat spreading to his sinuses and a young man coming into “our” garden to take the wheelie bin out for the dustmen. Rufus didn’t like the man coming into the garden, and he didn’t like the dustmen much either.

We had breakfast (cereal and toast with juice and tea) and made a picnic (ham sandwiches, hard boiled eggs, apples, bananas, cherry cake and malt loaf …).

And then we drove up to the highest mainline railway station in England – Dent Station. It’s miles away from Dent, or even anywhere. But it does overlook beautiful Dentdale and it is surrounded by beautiful countryside. The old station house has been beautifully restored but is now a holiday home that can be rented for a snip at £750 per week (apx $1,275). But if that’s a little steep, the snow hut just down the track can be rented for £350 a week (apx $600).

We hung around to take some photographs before jumping in the car and heading over to nearby Garsdale Station … which also isn’t anywhere near anywhere, let alone Garsdale …

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Dent Station. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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It overlooks beautiful Dentdale. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

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Diane. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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See! England’s highest mainline station. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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Ian – next to a no-smoking sign. He gave up smoking almost 3 months ago. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

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The old station house can be hired for £750 per week. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

We drove along a single-track road over the top of the dales where we spotted several birds – pipits and warblers mostly. One nice little spot was a wheatear, several in fact, who had lots of fun flying just out of photo-range and landing on fence posts in front of us. We also saw a shepherd with his dog working their sheep, with 3 transportation boxes waiting for them.

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The many different layers of Dentdale. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

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Sheep. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

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Dentdale – “come on in”. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

After driving through Garsdale, we arrived at Hawes, where it was market day and very busy. We parked up at the Dales Museum while we did a little shopping, and we made use of the facilities and changed into our walking boots.

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The Dales Museum, Hawes. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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Hawes. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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Bunting in Hawes. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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The Dales Museum, Hawes. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

We set off UP THE HILL to Hardraw, a very tiny village with just the one pub. However, if you walk into the Green Dragon pub and pay what is billed as a “small” toll (£2.50 each, apx $4.25), you can continue on into the gardens and onto a small campsite. If you walk just a little bit further, you can visit the highest waterfall in England, Hardraw Force.

What a hidden gem. We took some more photographs and had most of our picnic. I checked emails. The poet painted – he really is a man of many talents. We had a lovely little break and the weather stayed fine despite rain being forecast.

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Hawes. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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Hawes to Hardraw. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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One of the more desirable bothies we saw. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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Hardraw – Ian fell in taking this one … (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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Diane and Ian, Hardraw Force.

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Perspective. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

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Hardraw Force. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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The poet painting … well, drawing in this picture … (Picture: Diane parkin)

When it started to look a little black (“ovver Bill’s mother’s”, as they say around here), we continued on to the next stage of our walk, which was up ANOTHER HILL to the next village, Sedbusk, via several fields filled with loads of sheep.

Sedbusk is another lovely little dales village. The public footpath emerges right next to someone’s house, and they had left a bowl of water out for any passing dogs. We had a chat with the lady who lives there, while the dog had a big drink, and then we headed DOWNHILL (hurrah!), through many more fields of sheep, and landed back in Hawes.

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He told me there weren’t any more hills! (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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Sedbusk. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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In Sedbusk, with all that DOWNHILL to go. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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Ancient packhorse bridge. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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Random angler, on the River Ure. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

While we were out we saw lots of birds – blackbirds, swallows, sand martins, mistle thrushes, stonechats – as well as 2 fighter jets and 2 military helicopters. We drove back over the top of the dales so we could see the wheatears again, and still the promised rain didn’t come.

We were all very tired when we got back, even the dog fell fast asleep, and while we uploaded the pictures taken so far to the laptop, and I labelled them, the poet also cooked tea – bacon, eggs, sausages and (for him) tomatoes.

Since we got here we’d had very limited internet connection and mostly non-existent. But after tea we tried again and Ian, at least, managed to limp through to Facebook to add a status update. By this time, though, it was already 10pm and we were also watching a Sandra Bullock film on one of our 7 TV channels. But we called it a night and turned in.

Enjoy the pictures.

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Monday 14 July 2014 – Morecambe Bay

We both had a much better night with all of the animals settling down and the poet feeling a little better with the drugs kicking in – all over-the-counter. Breakfast today was just 2 courses – cereal followed by toast – with fruit juice for me and tea for both of us.

Sunday may have been spent in Cumbria, and we may not have left Yorkshire for our actual holiday home, but today, on Monday, the poet said he felt like a trip to the seaside (or “coast” as they say up here), and as Morecambe is the closest, we spent today over the other border – and in enemy territory – in Lancashire.

We had a lovely ride over along the western edge of the Yorkshire Dales, down to Kirkby Lonsdale. We stopped off to take some photographs and decided it might be nice to come here for a walk and a picnic beside the bubbling river – weather permitting – later in the week. We watched a shepherd herd his sheep from one side of the dale to another, and were quite surprised when a road hog in a Land Rover overtook us as we waited for the sheep and he almost ran some of the sheep off the road. We thought perhaps he lived there and was a local who knew the road and, quite possibly, the sheep and the farmer. We were still surprised, though, and would have been slammed if we’d done it.

From Kirkby Lonsdale we turned south-west and headed to Morecambe Bay, an area of special scientific interest due to the number of seabirds that migrate there every year. I love Morecambe Bay. I’ve had a holiday there and I went back and interviewed the Sandwalker of Morecambe Bay for an article I sold several times. It was nice to visit with the poet, who thought the sea, which was in, looked like “very thin mud”. Well, he is a Yorkshireman.

We both had our pictures taken with the very famous statue of comedy legend Eric Morecambe, and so did the dog. The weather stayed dry for our walk along the esplanade, and we were able to take more pictures and enjoy a fish and chip lunch – although we both had sausages instead of fish – with pop and followed by freshly fried and sugared doughnuts. We bought a jar of assorted rock and a bag of chocolate-coated honeycomb pieces before making our way back to the cottage via the same route, almost, in rain that was actually very low cloud.

We learned that the river in Lancaster is called the Lune, which is the old name for Lancashire. My Yorkshireman was very happy with that. (With apologies to all of my Lancashire buddies …) That meant the old, and therefore real, name for Lancaster would be Lunecaster and the old, and therefore real, name for Lancashire would be Lunecashire, which meant it was a county of Lune-ies … Yes, he was very happy. That made his day.

It was a bit chilly, so first job as soon as we got back was to build the fire – or the poet did. And then he made us some pasta in a cheese sauce with salad for our tea. He really is very well-trained.

Both cats seemed happy today to wander around at will. Domino had already tried to go outside, which is something she doesn’t even try to do at home. Holly had looked out of every single window, without trying to escape – so far. And Rufus … well, Rufus just acted as though he lived there and wanted to play ball. The. Whole. Time.

After tea we settled down in front of the fire and alternately watched the rain fall through the window and the screen pixelate on the telly.

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Eric and Ian having a chat. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

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Diane and Eric – and Rufus. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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The various peaks if they could be seen from Morecambe Bay. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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Wormy (and Rufus) pointing to his own crag. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

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Morecambe Bay. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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Morecambe Bay. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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Engraving at the memorial rose garden in memory of the Chinese cockle pickers who died. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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The memorial rose garden in memory of the Chinese cockle pickers who died. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

Enjoy!

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Sunday 13 July 2014 – Sedbergh to Bowness

First thing this morning I caught up on 3 days’ worth of Camp NaNo. I started the blog travel journal for our holiday and decided to add everything else written this month. I’ve been doing a lot of editing and proofreading work, which hasn’t left a lot of time or energy for anything else, so as there haven’t been that many other things (mostly due to the editing work), I’m adding them to Camp NaNo. I caught up with 2 days by doing that, and more than 2,000 words.

We had a disturbed night. it was very warm. We were worried about the cats and the poet managed to come down with tonsillitis. We’d bought the cats a new hooded litter tray but as they’d not used it at home yet we didn’t think they’d find it in a strange place. So, for now, I’ve taken the hood off and am delighted to say that both cats did actually find it during the night. I was up at 5am, though, to check.

The dog was a bit barky, but stayed in his basket most of the night. He only jumped on the bed twice, and jumped down again straight away. The cottage owners don’t like animals on the beds, so we like to keep him to his basket. We also brought pet blankets with us to protect the furniture.

It was warm despite the rain because the wood burner stove feeds the central heating as well as the hot water.

And what we thought was initially a sore throat woke the poet several times during the night with a raging fever. When I had a look, one of his tonsils had a septic blob on it and the other was quite swollen. Still, he said if he was going to be poorly anywhere he’d rather be poorly here.

He’s not too bad, however. We both managed a 3-course breakfast (cereal, toast and fruit) before going for a drive. They’d forecast showers too, so we decided to stock up on provisions.

The first place we went to was Sedbergh, just over the border in Cumbria. My blog buddy Diane had mentioned that Sedbergh might be a book town. Well, it isn’t quite Hay on Wye, but there were a few book shops. We bought a new 2015 road atlas for £4.99, reduced from £10.99, and an ice cream each. My old atlas was dated 2004 and I’ve been nagging for a new one for ages, and here it is.

Then we went to the Spar to get a few groceries and some throat lozenges, and then we drove through Kendal to Windermere. We parked up at Windermere but halfway down the hill to the lake we decided to go back for the car, not because we’re idle, but because the parking was only for one hour and we were going to be longer than an hour.

So we went back to the car and drove into Bowness where we dropped on lucky with the car park, and we walked down to the lake via a hat shop up hill first. We both have sun hats, but with the panic over Holly, we forgot to put them in. So we bought a new hat each in Bowness and ate prawn sandwiches and carrot cake on the lawn overlooking the lake. Rufus had a great time rolling in the grass before eventually joining us reclining on the lawn.

When the grass felt too damp we headed back to the car and then back to the cottage for tea – and rest for the poet who was starting to wilt. He rallied, though, built the fire and made us some savoury mince, which we had with basamati rice. Then we settled down in front of the World Cup final before tuning in to another film.

We took quite a few pictures today, in Sedbergh, in Windermere and in Bowness. And, of course, of our new hats.

Sedbergh. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

Sedbergh. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

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Sedbergh. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

Sedbergh. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

Sedbergh. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

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Rufus and Ian locked up. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

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A bustling Bowness. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

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Modelling my new hat, in Bowness. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

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Road train, Bowness. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

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Modelling his new hat, in Bowness. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

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Our view from our picnic, in Bowness. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

Enjoy!

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Saturday 12 July 2014 – Hemsworth to Dent

Little man’s taking a breather while I post the holiday blog over the next few days. I carried on with Camp NaNo while I was away, so he’ll be back just as soon as I’ve caught up. This is the journal “what I wrote” while we were there.

The first day of our holiday was more eventful than we hoped it would be. We had a late start because we were taking the cats and wanted to drive straight there in one go. The cottage wouldn’t be available until 4pm, so that meant we didn’t have to leave before 1pm. I’d also had a very busy week and not had my usual pre-holiday errand day. Instead, once the poet arrived home from his work on Friday, off we went to do the shopping, deliver a birthday card and get something to eat.

Even though I had been busy all week, I’d still managed to clear all of the washing so we had plenty of clothes to choose from. Saturday morning, therefore, was mostly spent selecting and packing clothes. Plus, of course, our travel clothes. We also packed all of the food, cleaning things (house and personal) and goods required for 3 pets. The cats were allowed out for a couple of hours in the morning, but then they were contained on one floor to make sure they were present and correct …

… or so we thought.

The poet started to pack the car but we noticed we were a cat short. Holly. We searched the house but couldn’t find her … and then noticed that the back door was open. Wide open.

We called and whistled, but Holly wasn’t having any of it. So we decided to finish packing the car and then go looking for her if there was still no sign.

We finished packing the car and there was still no sign. So Ian went one way and I went the other.

In the car park I thought I could hear her miaowing, but I couldn’t see her. I climbed onto the wall to look over the fence just as Ian appeared on the other side, both of us calling and Holly miaowing loudly.

“Where is she?” he asked.

“I don’t know,” I replied.

“Is that Holly?” he asked.

“Yes.”

“Where is she?”

But I didn’t know.

“Is she over that way?” he asked, pointing at the houses behind me.

“I don’t think so,” I said, turning. “I think she’s in this part somewhere —”

And there she was, right behind me, rolling around in the dust, miaowing happily.

So I grabbed her and off we went, locking the house behind us and, ensuring all the animals were secure on the back seat of the car, we headed off … via Tesco. For Paracetamol, petrol, and air for the tyres. We’d gone about 10 minutes down the road beyond Tesco when Ian realised he’d forgotten something and he turned the car around and we went back home.

By 2pm we were finally on our way again, for a hopefully undisturbed journey …

But we had to stop … 3 times … for Holly …

Domino was brilliant. She curled up in her basket, didn’t make a single sound, fell asleep, and stayed there. For the entire trip. In fact, we did wonder once or twice if she was still alive.

Rufus was brilliant. He was on his best behaviour, happy to have the cats with us for a change, and happy to be going for a ride. And every time we did stop, he had a quick walk.

Holly was not brilliant. And she got car sick. She cried a bit and, when we let her out of the basket, she prowled a bit too. But in the end we had to keep her and her car sickness contained.

At 4:30pm we arrived at our lovely little cottage in Dent. The sun was still shining and all along the route we were reminded of the previous week’s cycle race, the Tour de France in Yorkshire, as we drove through several pretty towns and villages still decorated with bunting.

It took much less time to unpack the car than it had to pack it and once the cottage door was closed, the cats were allowed to explore.

Then Ian set to work making our tea. We had bacon, sausages, fried egg, mushrooms and bread, with fruit for pudding. He built the fire (it powers the hot water), we took the dog for a quick walk, and we settled down for an evening in front of the telly. The last time we were at the cottage, last August (2013), the television had 3 channels on it. This time we had 7. Luxury! So we watched some drivel and then a film at 9pm.

When we were packing up my house, we stumbled across my old SLR camera, a Pentax MZ50 AF with 2 lenses. I’d already tried, and failed, to sell it, but the poet asked if we could keep it as he’d like to give it a go. We emptied it of any film and changed the batteries, but it took us ages to stumble upon some new film that hadn’t already expired. We did find some, though, and the Pentax came with us to Dent so he could have a practise.

The camera came out with us on our local walk as it doesn’t matter if they don’t come out. We still had the digital cameras as backup. The pop-up flash already isn’t popping up and I think the camera may have winding-on issues, but time will tell and we shall see soon enough.

A light drizzle as we walked the dog had turned into a downpour by bedtime, and so ended our first day in Paradise.

Here are a few pictures for today’s post:

Beautiful Dentdale (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

Beautiful Dentdale (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

Dent on a rainy evening. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

Dent on a rainy evening. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

The village of Dent. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

The village of Dent. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

Meadow pipit in Dentdale. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

Meadow pipit in Dentdale. (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

Holly hiding. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

Holly hiding. (Picture: Diane Parkin)

Enjoy!

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Camp NaNo Days 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

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Camp NaNo Day 7

We had another great weekend.

I was working overtime on Friday when the poet arrived home from helping a work colleague move house, but he was early enough for us to nip out if we wanted to. So we popped to one of our local working men’s clubs and watched another new band to the pair of us.

Saturday was a busy day. I did some more work, then we went to collect the poet’s mother and visited his daughter in her first home. Son #2 was there too and we sat in the garden chatting and drinking squash, enjoying the sunshine.

He had a gig Saturday night, so we had to go early and get ready for that. He headed off in time to set up, but I caught the train later so the animals weren’t on their own for too long. On the way back we collected my car and we went straight to bed as we had another busy day on Sunday.

Sunday was Day 2 of the Tour de France in Yorkshire, and we drove over to Hade’s Edge where we parked at a friend’s house. Some places were charging £5, £10 and even £15 (apx $8, $17 and $25) just for parking, because the roads into Holmfirth were closed. Then it was a nice, downhill walk into the town.

We were lucky with the weather. It didn’t start to rain until we arrived home. Rufus was quite well-behaved, considering the crowds. He was a little warm, a little excited, a little tetchy, but he didn’t bark very much and we were very proud of him. I was quite proud of myself too at the end of it, because I managed the walk back up the hill, pulled along by the dog a bit, and I detest walking up big hills.

The race was due in Holmfirth at 2:30pm. Then it was 2.40pm. I think it was about 2:45pm by the time they got there, and we felt very proud and privileged to have been part of the 2.5 million visitors to the race over the weekend, apparently the world’s largest sporting event and free of charge.

Here are a few photographs from our visit:

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This police officer probably received the best cheer he’d ever had. (Pic: Diane Parkin)

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Here they come … (Pic: Diane Parkin)

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The Tour de France, Yorkshire, 6 July 2014 (Pic: Diane Parkin)

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There they go … (Pic: Diane Parkin)

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My favourite picture of the day. ♥ (Pic: Diane Parkin)

I didn’t manage to do Camp NaNo for Friday until Saturday morning, and I did it sat up in bed while the poet made and fetched me a bacon sandwich. I can’t remember the last time I had breakfast in bed, let alone made for me. That was a nice treat.

Saturday evening, after he’d gone to his gig, I settled down for an hour and I managed Camp NaNo for Saturday. So I did none on Friday, two on Saturday and, erm, none on Sunday. So today’s will be yesterday’s and, if I get chance, I’ll do today’s as well.

I’ll update little man as I go along.

This week I have a lot of work to get through before we start our holiday on Saturday. I have 3 books to do – 2 editing, 1 proofreading – as well as Camp NaNo and prep for the holiday, and will probably be on overtime.

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Camp NaNo Day 6

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Camp NaNo Day 5

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Camp NaNo Day 4

The sharp-eyed will, once again, notice that Baggins Bottom has had another bit of a facelift. Do let me know what you think of it in the comments below. I love the replies because they’re on crinkly paper.

It’s a bit of a flying visit for me today as my workload for the rest of the month just doubled, and we have a week away in the midst of it.

Camp NaNo has been going well for both of us. I haven’t done today’s yet, as I’ve been hanging washing out, emptying/filling the dishwasher, fetching the bins in, running errands – bit of shopping, paying rent money into bank, buying the biggest lemon on the planet – and I have another to go to at 4pm. So work’s being squeezed in between and NaNo will be done this evening again. (Little man will be updated then.)

I’ve been doing credit control this week, and one payment just arrived. Another is still late and has just had another reminder email sent back. The accounts clerk was on holiday until Tuesday, and that gives me 2 reasons to be concerned: 1. It’s a good job she hadn’t gone on holiday for a month; and 2. If she’s been back since Tuesday you’d think I might have had the courtesy of a reply …

Anyway, another invoice is about to go off to the same firm but, with plenty of work also coming in, I may not be able to do any more for them until they’ve paid what they owe. I really am starting to tire of people thinking I don’t need paying for the time and work I put in.

I pitched for a job last week, and apparently narrowly lost out to someone they awarded it to just as my pitch came in. However, that freelance has now taken quite seriously ill (I wish him a speedy recovery, but little wax dolls have come a very long way … ;-) ), how was my schedule fixed, and did I still want it? Naturally I said yes.

With this, a full-length book, and another that came in this week, plus one that came in last week, plus several author/proofreader revisions I need to check, I think that’s just about me done now for the month. Let’s hope they pay me, eh. :-)

Here’s some feedback I also received: “Great work and fantastic communication. Highly recommended for editing and book writing assistance.” Five stars. :-D

Late this afternoon, then, I’m off for a hair appointment and the poet is helping a work colleague move house this evening, and we have NaNo. Tomorrow I’m not sure what we’re doing, but think it depends on weather and funds. Tomorrow evening we have a gig in Doncaster. And Sunday we’re off to the Tour de France, to watch from a hillside somewhere near Holmfirth. Apparently the roads are expected to be murder, but we have a friend’s drive to leave the car on within walking distance. But if the traffic is too bad, we may just go to the seaside instead.

Y’all have a great weekend.

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Camp NaNo Day 3

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Camp NaNo Day 2

Camp NaNo started very well yesterday with the first brand new story written in ages, and my first target of 1,000 words or 1 hour met. I already know what I’m writing to today, as I copied the prompt out into my notebook while I had a moment. The poet is giving it a go this year as well, so I’m saving today’s for when he gets home so we can work together. I’ll change the little man as soon as I have something to change.

We’ve already had a hectic week. I’ve been plodding through electronic edits while I waited for a new proofread, I wrote the walks report yesterday and submitted it to 7 local newspapers, I pegged 17 jobs this week so far to pitch for later in the week (bearing in mind we have a holiday coming up), caught up with the daily competitions, paid a few bills – with another small debt biting the dust! – changed a hair appointment and, of course, started Camp NaNo.

Phew!

Another thing we did was change our relationship statuses on Facebook, something that we thought would happen quite quietly but which, in fact, turned into a bit of a fanfare and attracted more than 120 ‘likes’ and over 80 ‘comments’. That took a little time keeping on top of acknowledgements, etc.

And here’s a *** truth alert ***

While we’ve never actually done anything wrong – we were both completely and absolutely single and ‘available’ when we started seeing each other, and there was absolutely no one else involved – we’ve not had an easy year. I’m not going into detail, and it wasn’t our doing, but it’s all behind us now.

We’ve known about it for a while, as we had to book it in advance, but we didn’t want our parents or the kids finding out online. So we told them all first. And, well, we’re getting married next year. And we’re going away to do it, so there. Not everyone will be happy but – this time – it’s not about them. We’re just overwhelmed and delighted with all the warm wishes from our friends and families.

*** end of truth alert ***

So that’s what we’ve been up to this week.

Today I’ve been carrying on with the electronic edits, and the new proofread arrived this afternoon. I’ve also been doing my Widow Twanky impression while the weather’s still nice. My eyes are a bit tired with all the close screen work and have gunked up a little over the past few days.

Tomorrow will just be a day 3 update, then on Friday I’ll be back with plans for the weekend.

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Camp NaNo Day 1

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Busy month ahead

We had another very busy weekend with 3 birthdays, 2 guests and 1 meal out all celebrated Friday night. We also visited parents in Doncaster twice, went shopping twice, went to 1 gig, and visited parents in Solihull. (Dad says it’s not Birmingham, which it isn’t, so …)

It was quite the mad rush as we had to tidy the house a bit on Friday and sort out additional sleeping arrangements before even going to collect 2 of the poet’s kids. We saw the third while at his parents, and his grandaughter, and took one of them to the station on Saturday to meet his girlfriend. We had a very nice meal and I got to bring home giant cake, so I was very happy. They also put some gammon into a doggy bag for us to bring back for Rufus. He enjoyed that.

On Saturday, when we got the day to ourselves back (at about 3pm), we did a little more shopping, this time for the cats, and we had a chill night in front of the telly, which was lovely.

P1020451Sunday was a very early start for us as the poet was accompanying my dad to the national service memorial day celebrations at the national arboretum in Alrewas. Ian wanted to have a look around and take some pictures before the service, as it was his first time there. Then they took their places in the VIP seats right beside the national servicemen’s memorial.

We haven’t collected the pictures from his camera yet, but here’s one that I took when I was there in June 2011. The wreath says “We Also Served”.

I had a few hours with my mom, then we collected a Chinese on our way home and had another chill evening.

This morning, before going back to work, we moved the spare “bed” out of Abbey Road again, so that I could get to my desk and work.

Today I have electronic edits to finalise, then I hope to start a new proofreading job in the next few days and a new editing job. My old diary finishes today, so tomorrow I’ll be starting a shiny new one.

Tomorrow also sees the start of Camp NaNo (July 2014) – and I’m ready.

We have a very busy month ahead as we’re off on our holidays right in the middle of it. We have lots to do before then too.

Who remembers this little guy?

Well, he’s gonna be back over the next 31 days, so keep an eye out for him. :-)

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