Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Ok, well i am blogging off line a the moment, so this seems weird the 'windows family safety' thing keeps popping up, don't know where its come from, had a windows up date and now its there and wont go away! Driving me mad, thought i had got ridden of it, but then give it a moment and its back....

And now here i am live! fixed the family thingy... it got bit upset, in an inanimate thing can do? by saying think of the kids!!! well we only really have Pippa and well she is ok about it!.... ok enough crazy talk, lets get cracking on my diary of me back in blighty the other week... seems my mind was playing tricks as i thought i was repeating myself but cant find any reasons on previous pages of doing so about this trip anyway... so will do a bit and fixing and catch up with you when i get there folks!

so i am not sure where i finished off last blog, and cant read it here so will just begin and see how it goes... if i repeat anything it wont be new, the repeating myself or the blog! Now did i do Portsmouth and all its glories? Our ancestor Nelson's ship The Victory and the other ship there The Warrior... we were not sure mom would manage the steep stairs more like ladders than stairs, with sometimes a wooden hand rail but more times a rope instead! We with all the others on the tour of the Valiant took them sideways! They ate where they slept, and slept where the cannons were! The bread was made on land and by the time they got to eat it full of weevils and things! They ate the bread in the dark so as not to see what was already eating the bread! This type of bread was more like biscuit, twice baked bread in other words.

If you were being punished they manacled you to a bar in between the cannon and tables and you made the cat 'o nine tails for your whipping afterwards! If you stole from your mates – this would be anyone on board ship – knots were also in your cat 'o nine tails and this would leave marks on your back permanently, like 'just' the whipping wouldn't, but this would be worse, and on joining another ship they would see these marks and say “this is a marked man”, and know he wasn't to be trusted.

There was no chef on board in those old days, just anyone would cook, but then with those ingredients i guess who could tell!

The ceilings, well beams more so, were so low even i had to duck in there! Makes a change for me to feel tall! Being vertically challenged as i am! Some of the men on board this ship had been over 6' tall, must have been awful on board and bent over for all those months out at sea.

On The Warrior the standing room was much higher, there were racks aloft with swords awaiting action, and waist high were stands with guns ready to pull out at a seconds notice... we had a chat with a man who seemed to materialize from out of the floor in the mangle room... now did i tell you this? Anyway he explained all about the washing on board in that day, the doctor would usually tell the men when they needed a bath, the clothes were washed in a drum under each of the mangles... ok think i will leave this bit seems familiar... that the clothes although washed, mangled and air dried where never ironed and never looked like they do in the movies! these washing machines of they're day were heated by the steam that came up from the engine room through vast pipes... so they had central heating to eh!

the Spinnaker tower was amazing, 110 meters high, we went up in the internal elevator, there was an exterior elevator, but you really would have to be crazy to go up in that! It was a windy day and in side at the top, you could really feel the movement of the building! There is a section you can walk on of bullet proof glass with railing either side, of course i walked the walk! Looking down at the skinny legs holding the building up! And mom stayed on that level and i went up another couple of floors to the crows nest, as i reached the door i could hear this racket on the other side.... group of school children! Didn't really seem so much higher as your already so high on the other level!

The Mary Rose exhibition was amazing, this ship is 500 years old, and was sunk for 2 hundred years before The Valiant was even built! Its still wet, being sprayed with a type of gum to preserve it, and in the next few months will to taken out and dried off.... you get given a telephone type thing when you walk in and you press the button lift to your ear and hear a commentary as you walk along the length of the ship. I pushed my button and then realised my mom didn't know what to do with it! So i did hers for her, so this meant i was running a few minutes ahead of her! in the Mary Rose museum afterwards we took the opportunity to actually handle some of the artifacts of this great ship, some wood, an arrow and some rope. also in here there was a small room, dark but inviting, well sort of, so in i went, but as i entered a voice spoke up inviting me in to see the dentist! i half backed out, then ventured in again and went to sit on a box to listen to the narrative but as i did 'he' said about the box and what was in side! all the dentist drills and stuff and what he would use them for.... on me! so i hot footed it out of there! there was also a man in costume of the day who told us bits and pieces as we went along, i told him it was like having our own personal guide and he said as there were few people about it was boring for him just standing about and he was enjoying telling us everything... which we did and it was good to hear about things we would otherwise of just passed by... and finally on our way out of there i tried on some armour! i could hardly move and that was just with the breast plate and helmet on! sorry no photos of this!

There was so much more to do than we could, we had thoroughly run out of steam, our tickets, about 18 pounds each, also covered a 45 minute tour, by boat of the local area, but we didn't feel much like a boat ride in the sea that day, windy and a bit rough! There were another 3 or 4 museums we also didn't go into. What you don't see you can return to do another day if you keep your ticket of course! And apart from the tour, the ships and Mary Rose exhibition you can keep going back to with your ticket to see things again.

Think i will leave the rest of the trip for fear of repeating myself.... more than usual! well looks like i didn't! have checked out my past entry two of three times, so it be from telling the story to friends before i came home i feel like i have written it down!

so onwards with the story now live! Tuesday and Winchester... a beautiful day! we found the city easily enough, and a car park! parked up and found the place we were meeting a friend we hadn't seen for a long long time.

we retraced our steps and went to look around the Cathedral, we paid, of course, everything pay pay pay! i do understand why, so much up keep and preservation to be done, and i am glad they do, what a wonderful place, so calm and beautiful... i ran out of battery power there, the camera that is, so we popped into the shop and bought some more, returning quickly before we ran out of time, to meet our friend, and because it was going to close for a service soon!

we waited underneath the big clock that hangs from the front of Lloyd's bank, the old Guildhall of the city, we waited.... and waited, we checked out people who could be our friend as they walked up the steep hill or down it, either way! people that no way could have been him! then have a laugh as they seemed to be coming straight for us and we panicked! but they just wanted to go to the bank after all! well we gave up after 45 minutes and went into the restaurant over the road where we had been watched whilst watching! lovely place good Italian food, just like my grandmother used to make! and we got a call from our friend... ooops, but between this and that he hadn't been able to make it... so never mind, next time amigo promise!

and so back to Hayling Island... and Wednesday morning we woke up, me with a migraine, well was about due, all the driving walking and stuff! now what i should have done was to take an imigren and back to bed for 3 hours, got up fine and did what we wanted to do... visit a friend in Dorking on the way home... but no, checked out and started the drive towards Dorking sort of in the wrong direction really, i got worse and worse and probably not too far from where i wanted to go i saw a sign that read Liphook, a town we had passed through on the way down, and just checking it now i see how far we had got and how long it then took from that left turn to get there! on we went up to M25 and home, running out of gas, me running out of concentration and reserve, trying the whole time not to be ill... don't know how i did it, especially as i don't now drive on the left hand side of the road, or will that much traffic, but i suppose our inner something or other kicks in and kept me going.... got to mom's took the imigren and three hours later up and fine, well fine enough to have done the trip safe and got to see a friend i haven't seen for over 5 years i think! so so sorry Joanne....

So back to home turf....

the notes i wrote i did in the Wyevale Garden Centre in Wendover, so i think i haven't written these!

On Friday i left mom's to go meet a friend in Aylesbury but on the way i popped.... into the above garden centre, it was so lovely in there, walking around the plants and feeling relaxed and breathing! there was a loud bird flying about the outside plants and i followed the beautiful music he made, it was a little robin and he was hopping about watching what was going on while i watched him, then he just sat there whistling to me! only me, no one else noticed him! i guess people see robins everyday but i don't now, so it was lovely! and i at least appreciated him.

later i was off to St Albans and to Tony's to un pack at last and feel stationary for a while! Saturday at Tony's in the morning and took things easy and in the afternoon we went to see Watchmen, absolutely fantastic movie, was loud, and not just for me, Tony mentioned it too! The cinema was empty really, there was us, a group of three, a two, and a one! All blokes! There was a lot of bits of a blue man in it!?! is all i am going to say about that! But a great Super Hero movie!

and Sunday we three went to Windsor! Lovely day, we did go to Woodside first.... its a children's farm on the out skirts of Markyate, and was smaller than we remembered it, i guess this happens! and was a bit pricey too, although i suppose if your with little children it would be as good as it used to be, and we did go alot... so please go! ;-) so we went to Windsor instead, another glorious day weather wise, we were so lucky, the time Mom and i were away it did rain, but only at night, and more or less the days were fine and sunny, and now back this weekend was wonderfully sunny. The Queen was at home, her flag was up to signify her being at home! we didn't go in there either, how can anyone afford to come on holidays to England, about 15 pounds each to enter! so we had a good walk around and i made us walk into Eton so i could go into the Asquiths teddy bear shop! but it had gone... alas!

Monday Milton Keynes with mom, we had a good look around but were pretty much out of energy, goodness know how my mom has been doing all this, this trip completely 'tired' me out well and proper... good going gal is all i can say, bless her...

i think this day i managed to get to see friends on my way back to Tony's for a coffee at theirs, before off again and home...

Tuesday collected mom on the way to have coffee, again, with friends in Aylesbury, should have been lunch but we just couldn't do it, Mom's appetite is 't up to it and we were wore out! but we had a good chin wag and caught up with everything... we also were seeing another friend of mine at her place near Buckingham, and had a shop to do at Tescos before dropping mom off!

when i got to Mom's she asked where her card was! for Mothers Day on Sunday, i said not to worry, but i think she thought as i had bought it Monday i would leave it with her.. and Saturday past she said on the card never came...! when i rang to wish her happy Moms day on Sunday i told her where i had hidden her card in her house! sorry off a tangent... so Wednesday morning i wasn't going to go far just relax at Tony's but Mom said she wanted to see me before i left for home, so i picked her up and we went to Hemel Hempstead, saw mate at work hadn't had time to see again at her house... and had another coffee!

looks like coffee coffee coffee! its not i drink that much, just written down like this is awful! but thank you Costa Coffee for keeping me going whilst back in the UK!!!

so Mom back to hers and me back to St Albans and Tony came home which was a nice surprise so we both met Barry off his train down from Nottingham and after taking his bag back home, we went into town for a few things, was good to see Baz if only for a quick evening before i had to head off home, i also when booking my flight hadn't realised Mother's Day was on the Sunday and should have arranged the trip better! Baz gave me his card so i could pack it, and Tony told him he would be on his own Friday evening, as Barry was staying there for a few days after i had gone home.

I said to Baz did he want the bedroom for my last night and he said not too worry for one night... i got up at about 4am, and the boys at about 4.30am, and we were off just before 5am! Ugh!! Tony and Barry seemed to be hanging back a bit as i left the house, and then Tony came down with Barry's bag!?! he said he thought it was mine... yeah right! And then at Luton airport i hopped out of the car at the drop off zone, drop off as 'they' said i would be all right on my own to check in, and out comes Barry and his bag... and he is coming back with me!!! yeah yippee! All those lies and fibs between them and mom! It seems lots of people knew Barry was coming back with me, except me!

I was like a giggling chipmunk at the airport with happiness at having him come back with me! So this was Thursday morning we got a cab back home and relaxed a bit! Friday we went down town and got a few bits, but pretty much took things easy. Saturday the three of us went down to Miramar for a look around and some lunch. Sunday we went to the Pizarra car boot sale, there were only about 5 or even 4 stalls, and i am sorry to say we only did a drive through! And went on to the Trocha market instead....

Sunday evening we went to Mijas pueblo and had some supper there, nice in the evening, it was still light when we arrived and dusk as we came home, i hadn't been there at that time of the evening for ages and was nice to see it literally in a different light! Barry took loads of photos tagging me in all the ones i seemed to look awful in! the waterfall is not working now, all the good work they did to improve that area in the gardens has gone to waste, the lights not working, the water green and filthy looking, goldfish languishing in the still water, barely moving, they were alive, just! there were more people about than i expected too, all the shops were open and it was warm...

Now Monday we had a very busy day.... first we went into Malaga city, just the old section and gardens, they were building a huge seating area in one of the plazas, probably for Semana Santa, and some wonderful works of art... by Manolo Valdés i realise now i should have actually taken some photos of these, as there don't seem to be many on the net, although this exhibition is doing the rounds forsure! more here...wonderful pieces... there were loads of the human statues too, jumping at people who got too close! and by the Alcazaba there is a dig going on on the Roman Theater there, it was found back in 1951 but they're doing a lot of work on it now, people were digging up pottery as we watched! last time we were there they were having a book fair on top of it all!

as we made our way through the extensive gardens we found another galleon! this time in the harbor here in Malaga, have to find out what it is though...

phew getting tired now, not sure what time i starting fixing this to blog but its nearly 8pm now, Franco is busy fighting PS styley! only bit to go, must finish tonight!

...then i had to take my glasses into Specsavers in Fuengirola, but on the way we popped in see las chicas in the Estanco where i worked last year! Was so good to see them after nearly five months, we had lots of hugging and kisses, and Barry was flummoxed by all the spanglish that was being said by all four of us!!! and i had to promise to come back soon and we would all go out for lunch again...then off to Fuengirola to take back mis gafas! We had a bite to eat there too! coffee of course for me! Then... off back to Malaga! to the poligino* this time! we were in search of a new jacket for Baz... it was elusive there and also in Plaza Major where we went afterwards!!! i was sooooo tired after all that driving and walking, not used to driving our car that much, no power steering so now have some new muscles and stronger shoulders, was so funny i kept putting my left hand down into the side of the door looking for the gear shift! i normally only do that in England!

anyway with all this we at least managed to avoid the Fuengirola road and save the car from the bumps and jolting, and our bodies of course! Although the road from the Moreno/BP roundabout is closed now... that bit as you head off on the Mijas road is terrible, how can they dig up this road too? I can see they are going to widen it at this point, or something, but it wasn't necessary to do in the way they have, and then you have the forth road on that roundabout, the road to Coín which of course, closed some months ago! So all four roads are rubble and pot holes at this junction!

And Tuesday... also avoiding the above roads unintentionally... we went to Marbella, had coffee in Plaza de Naranja, and a good time to do so with all the wonderful orange blossom there at this time, and once again not done that for years either! On our approach to the coast we could see the Atlas Mountains in Africa and the rock of Gibraltor. lots of tourists there all following people holding up some bizarre item so they can be spotted at a hundred yards, and the pour tourists themselves sporting stickers like school children!

Then it was home, Barry was packed and we just relaxed up on the terrace watching the world go by... the street? Nearly done now, wonderful small little paves, they have left some white stuff on the surface, to naturally fill in and settle, although some of our neighbors didn't know what this was for and washed the area in front of their houses anyway! They have mounted the halogen lights ready for Semana Santa, we have the cable on our terrace as usual for plugging in at the relevant times during the week... although the actual light in on our neighbors terrace!?! ¿que?

And so to Malaga airport and Pippa and i dropped of Barry... ;-(

ok, i think this is enough for today, not sure where i have gone over what i have already said, so will have lots to delete no doubt, or just leave in anyway in case you weren't paying attention! And still have so many photos to add, and now with Barry's trip.... lots more, although most of the ones he took seemed to be me pulling faces... as if!

all folks, thats all!



    *using this 'off line' and the in document i have just added 'poligino' was amazing the words that came up as the spell check thought i had misspelled the word... only thing was i haven't even heard of any of them! So what did they mean!?!

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