A quick update

I’m about to head off on my first solo motorbike ‘adventure’ since passing my test back in February of this year. I have a good friend who has been living over near Dingle in the far southwest of Ireland,  a beautiful part of the country (i’m told – looking forward to finding out). 

It’s going to take a while, with 3 distinct stage’s,  home – fishguard, fishguard to rosslare and finally rosslare to dingle. About 14 hours of travelling,  of which 4 will be on the ferry crossing (fishguard to rosslare). 

The crossing is at 2:30 am on Wednesday morning, which means leaving home around 8pm, it’s going to be fun.

I’ll post pictures and an update when I get back a week Wednesday.  Thanks for reading. 

A long ovedue update on Life, The Universe and Everything!

No not 42 (as per The Hitchikers Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams). Hard to believe that my last post was in April – I have NO idea where the time has gone. Their have been lots of changes in the Armitage-verse over the last 3 months, with more on the horizon.

We had a lovely couple of weeks of early summer sunshine in Nerja on the Costa Del Sol in mid-may. We were JUST ahead of the season, so everything was still being painted, made ready for the new season and the numbers of tourists were low. The weather I am happy to say was fabulous. Here’s a coastal view taken from the Balcon de Europe…

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As you can see, the beach at Torre Del Mar was heaving (not)…

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Anyway, we had a great couple of weeks. Nerja is about 55Km east of Malaga. Now sadly a dim and distant memory.

We had decided that once we got back from our holiday, we would put Armitage Towers up for sale. We have a large house and now their is mostly just the 2 of us rattling around in it, so we decided to downsize and use some of the proceeds for some travel.  We’ve been living in our current house for 14 years and in the area for 34 years, so definitely time for a change. At the time of  writing, we have found a couple of possibles, but are waiting to sell ours. I’ll keep you posted.

Finally, my only comment about BREXIT.  It has been interesting to see how the promises made by the LEAVE campaign have unravelled and been shown to be less than 100% truthful. However, I do believe in democracy and will accept the vote. Its been very revealing to see how people that didn’t get the result they wanted want to change the rules until they get the result they want. I personally think that we have a very interesting 2 or 3 years ahead of us. Oh and of course, the least said about the England Football team and Euro2016 the better. Come on Wales!

Thanks for reading.

 

 

 

 

A day at the Southbourne

We recently visited our sun who lives and works in the New Forest, a lovely natural area with ponies roaming the heathland. We were taken down to a small sea-side town called Southbourne, about  4 miles east of Bournemouth. We took our dog as she loves to run in the waves and swim. We had a nice day, with lots of warm hazy sunshine… but as it was still very early in the season the beach was pretty much empty, apart from the work to replace the Groynes and rebuild the beaches.

I can thoroughly recommend it. A very nice, typical, small British sea-side town. Thanks for reading.

Good Friday walk(Windsor Great Park)

As Good Friday was looking to be the best day of the Easter Weekend(and we hadnt been there for ages) we decided to take the dog and stretch our legs in Windsor Great Park, which is 4,800 acres of park managed by the Crown Estate.

Their is plenty of parking and loads of space….this is the view looking to the north – in the distance is the castle.

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Here’s a zoom look.. their really is a castle there.. (apologies for the quality – I took this using my phone).

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Behind a deer fence was a HUGE number of deer….

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It was a little boggy(we had had quite a bit of rain) but a nice way to stretch your legs. At the southern end of the long walk is a copper statue of King George III. A nice walk. Enjoy your weekend.

A grand day out!

After yesterday evenings sunset (see previous post), I had  a day booked out to clock up some miles on my new motorbike. Getting a full licence was one of the things I had on my to-do list for when I retired. I passed the 4th and final part of the test on 10th February.

For the motorbike minded, I have a Honda CB500X which I am enjoying immensely. Anyway, the plan for today was to ride down to the coast and visit a couple of my favourite south coast towns. Its slightly early – as you will see from the pictures, a lot of the attractions have yet to open – that will happen this coming Easter weekend.

When I set off, it was grey cloud and didnt bode well. However by the time I parked up in Hayling Island, the sun was out!

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The Isle of Wight could be seen very clearly across the deserted car park(on the right hand horizon). At the weekend, weather permitting, the view would be much different.. cars everywhere. DSCN1764

After a snack, the mandatory selfie.. the sun was very bright!

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Anyway, the second stop on my outing was 50km east, a small town called Littlehampton. Again, mostly closed, but will be heaving come next weekend, weather permitting.

Here’s a view East along the promenade….nice perspective….

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And the view West to the coastguard lookout..

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Finally.. the mostly deserted beach….

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I love seaside resorts outside of the main season – you get a feel for the type of place they really are. Hope you enjoyed.. thanks for reading..

2 Years a Coeliac

Time for an update on my Gluten Free journey. I was diagnosed as a Coeliac on December 6th, 2013. My previous update can be read here(Earlier Coeliac Article). I am in the process of having a 2 year review (Endoscopy done, blood test and session with consultant due in early 2016). It’s looking good, it seems that the damage done has healed well.

I have to say I feel the best I have EVER felt. So much so, that my lifelong Asthma has disappeared – which I can only attribute to becoming Gluten Free. When I realised what had happened and polled a couple of Facebook groups I belonged to, others seem to have seen positive benefits to their overall health. Admittedly, some had seen the development of some issues also, but it has been a great experience for me.

It was a shock at first when I considered all the things I could no longer eat or drink– the most disappointing was the removal of real ale! But, overall, things have never been better (mostly). More and more Gluten Free products are becoming available(including Beer/Lager – YAY), although the prices are still high. Restaurants are now legally obliged to indicate GF offerings on their menus.

I do occasionally get ‘Glutened’, i.e. eat something containing Gluten, but thankfully it’s happening less and less. I am finding that now I am Gluten Free, being ‘Glutened’ is not something I want to happen as its impact is more severe now than it used to be.

Coeliac UK (UK Coeliac Charity) are doing a great job of raising awareness as well as alerting when products have challenges. One of the mainstream supermarkets in the UK actually included Gluten Free offerings in their Christmas advertising.

I have finally mastered the art of Gluten Free Yorkshire Puddings, Stuffing and Dumplings… now if I could just come up with a foolproof recipe for bread, I’d make a fortune.

Thanks for reading. Enjoy the break over the festive season and a happy new year.