October 6 – Friday

Got going for my ride right at noon – went to the canal again and rode north to Dunhamstead, where I left the canal and got on the road where I crossed to the other side. Went thru Oddingley on my way south back to Tibberton. Along the way I noticed a gate into a field and all the cows were lined up as if they were waiting for something. There was a sign indicating that there was a footpath, but the cows were blocking the entrance to it and didn’t seem to want to move so I stopped to chat with them for a couple of minutes, then continued on.

The road wasn’t very busy so it was a nice ride back to Tibberton where I returned to the canal and onwards to Worcester. Stopped (surprise, surprise) for a pint and sat inside as it was once again chilly and windy out.

A word about children in pubs here – I can totally understand mothers wanting a nice lunch out but I really wish they would pay more attention to their screaming kids. When a child in a high-chair screams ‘mommy mommy mommy’ over and over again in a high-pitched voice at the top of her lungs and mommy is sitting right there ignoring her that makes me want to scream too. All it would take is a couple of seconds to see what the little one wants, then mommy can go back to gossiping with her friends and everyone would have a little more peace.
Back at the house the doggies were restless, so I harnessed them up and they took me for a walk. We went to the orchard, but they didn’t seem to want to go in so we skirted it and followed a footpath that I hadn’t taken before. After passing thru a nice small meadow on a hill we ended up in a housing area with the usual dead-end courts and curving lanes. It was a bit of a maze but I knew that eventually we’d get to a path or street out, and we finally did.

For dinner Colin and I drove to Fern Hill Heath and got fish and chips from the Bull pub to take home – it was just as good as when I’d gone there in August and had eaten on their back terrace.
I was almost falling asleep watching tv later so went up to my room, where I did a few sudoku puzzles and got my second wind. Back downstairs I came across an excellent movie and, of course, stayed up way too late watching it (The Pelican Brief – an oldie but a goodie). Not satisfied with that I went back to my room and watched a bunch of you-tube videos of some of my favourite songs, and didn’t turn out the light until almost 2 in the morning – so much for getting more sleep.

October 5 – Thursday

It just poured rain during the night – for about 5 minutes it pounded down, then slacked right off. By the time it got light it was clear and beautiful out, although as usual lately kind of cold and windy.

Colin left to go to his friend’s funeral just before noon so I did yoga before going for my ride. I went up to the canal, then down into the city centre so I could go to Holland and Barretts for more toothpaste and oregano oil capsules. I went along the canal a little further than I could have but I know the area enough now that I was able back-track thru the streets to find the store with no problem.
I also picked up some milk-thistle capsules to support my liver and kidney a bit. Instead of riding back along the canal I rode up Tolladine Road – it’s not nearly as picturesque, and certainly not relaxing, but it is a lot shorter and quicker, even with the much harder hills.

When I got home the dogs were very excited – jumping around like little kangaroos wanting to go out for a walk (or hop). I managed to get their harnesses on – Mo especially doesn’t make it easy. Her efforts to ‘help’ include rolling on her back and wiggling all over the place. I finally got them leashed and off we went to the orchard.

Stopped for a bit of cash at an ATM then went to the pub. We sat outside, but it was pretty chilly and little Mo was shivering so I didn’t stay long before I took them back home.

I was just finishing preparing my dinner when Colin got back. We sat down and watched the bike race that had taped earlier – Milano-Torino. It’s one of the last of the year – a couple more this weekend then pretty much done until the Australian ones in January.

October 4 – Wednesday

Took the littles ones for an early walk – once again windy and chilly.
Went to the orchard and let them run around a bit, then stopped at the pub for a cup of tea – they open at 9 am, but even for me it was a bit early for anything stronger. Little Miss Mo was getting a bit fidgety so I had to chug most of the tea and get going again.

Came back home and dropped the dogs off, then went back to the pub just after noon for a cider. On the way back it was cold again so I went to put my hoodie up and noticed that my left earring was missing – damn! I searched the area for about 10 minutes but no sign of it. It’s not expensive or precious really, but I only brought a few pairs with me and it’s the second one I’ve lost. Good thing I got 4 pairs in Blagaj or I’d be down to 2 pairs and a couple of singles.

I got to have salmon for lunch but Colin had an appointment in the city centre so he missed out. He was home for a couple of hours then went out for dinner with another friend – once again he missed out on the salmon for dinner, which I had this time as a salad on a toasted bun.
Watched another show on Egypt – this time all about Ramses III. Also flipped by tennis and darts, and a program about the many brilliant inventions from ancient Greece.

October 3 – Tuesday

A beautiful morning, although again chilly with a strong wind.
I left for my bike ride around 11:00 – headed to the canal and rode as far as Dunhamstead again, where I left the canal and tried to find a road back to Tibberton.
Unfortunately there is no quick way through like I’d hoped – I rode all the way to Crowle (where I’d been once in August) then came to the intersection of the road that goes to Worcester in one direction and Tibberton in the other. Luckily Tibberton wasn’t far at all, and I was able to get back on the canal – probably a 4 or 5 mile detour in all, and the sunny sky had totally clouded over.
Rode back along the canal, and stopped – where else? – at the pub for a cider. I didn’t even have to ask for it – she was already heading for the tap.

I arrived home just as Colin was about to leave to get a haircut. When he returned we took the doggies for a walk up to the orchard – I’m really glad I brought the right combination of clothes and jackets as it was cold!

Watched another cycling race from Italy that was taped earlier. Had lamb chops again for dinner – not huge but very tender and tasty. I’ve been eating way too much – I’m pretty good with the meals, but it’s all the peanuts and potato chips (not to mention ice-cream) that are starting to make some of my clothes a little snug. I better smarten up or I’ll be a big fattie by the time I get home.

October 2 – Monday

The plumbers arrived right on time at 7:45 am to have a look to see what’s plugged – they routered the line and managed to un-plug whatever was the problem. At least they didn’t have to dig anything up, and they were gone in under an hour.

Young Neil arrived for a coffee right as I was getting ready to go for a ride – it was a bit overcast and very windy. I rode north to the canal, then headed east for over half an hour. Not too far along I pulled to the side of the path to let an oncoming cyclist pass, and he said that there was another 25 or 30 coming – all sorts of cycles including reclining ones and ones powered by the arms. Some of the guys were missing parts of limbs so I think they were some sort of club or something. A few had American flags, but others said thank you to me with English accents.

I continued on until just past Dunhampstead before I turned back.

I’d taken off the hoodie when I turned around but only made it about 100 yards before I stopped and put it back on as the wind was so cold.

There were a couple of boats going up the canal, and many others moored at certain points along the way. Some of them must stay the winter at a couple of the spots – I saw folks doing maintenance and touching up paint, etc.

I stopped at the Lyppard Grange pub for a pint of cider before returning to the house. I then took the dogs out for a walk up to the orchard, let them loose for a little run-around, then took the long way home along the paths, including through a meadow that I would never have gone into on the bike because of the gate at the entrance.

Colin went out to meet some friends for a drink and dinner while I stayed home and had another batch of fresh pasta. Watched a couple of shows on Egypt, and a couple more on farming in England – went to bed very early – before 10, I think.

October 1 – Sunday

Went floor shopping with Colin – he’s replacing the carpet in the living room with wooden flooring. We drove to a large home-store in Kidderminster and spent an hour or two looking at various types and colours of flooring boards – he settled on a walnut laminate that should look beautiful. Several of the boxes were slightly damaged, so they gave him 6 of the 10 for 50% off.

After that was done we stopped at the Bull pub in Fern Hill Heath for Sunday lunch. It was great – I had the roast pork, which came with roast potatoes, yorkshire pudding, stuffing and gravy, and had a bowl of mixed veggies and another bowl of potatoes au-gratin on the side. I managed to eat most of it – nothing left for the doggies at home, but was I ever stuffed.

Took the littles ones for a walk almost as far as the orchard. Back at home we watched 3 different bike races that had taped on tv – the season’s almost over so we’re watching as much as we can before it ends.

September 30 – Saturday

It rained off and on most of the night and looked to be an overcast day. Colin went out with young Neil to watch Neil’s little boy Joseph play football (soccer) while I stayed at the house and did yoga.

I was just getting ready to take the doggies for a walk when Colin returned so he joined us.

Walked up to the orchard again and let the little ones loose, then re-leashed them and followed the paths to the pub for a drink – no sign of Chips the cat – he must have heard the dogs coming and vamoosed for safety. The weather turned fairly nice, although still a bit windy.
Back at the house there seems to be a bit of a plumbing problem – starting from the bathroom upstairs and bubbling up through a lid in the back courtyard. Colin called the fellow that was here the other day fixing the heat registers – he’ll try to come by Sunday or Monday.

Watched a cycling race from Italy, had lamb chops for dinner, watched a movie on tv.