Sue and Martin in Mallorca 2019

Sue and Martin in Mallorca 2019
On the Archduke's Path in Mallorca

Thursday 7 December 2023

Monday 4 December 2023 - Eagley Jazz Club and The Dixie Beats

Another great night at Eagley with the Dixie Beats, who generously donated copies of their latest CD, recorded earlier in the year at Eagley, to the 100 plus attendees at the annual Christmas Dinner.

Thanks to the active committee and the talented bands who perform for an entry fee of £8, the club is thriving despite its older than desirable age profile.

The programme is here.

Wednesday 6 December 2023

Saturday 2 December 2023 - Wythenshawe parkrun #549, and Around Timperley and Altrincham

Volunteer marshal Sam arrives bright and early

The sharp frost didn't put paid to Wythenshawe's parkrun, where the 'Flag and Sandcastle' course proved a good choice. 

The crowds - some 243 runners and 25 volunteers - gathered at the start.

We got going soon after 9am, and quickly spread out as the runners made their way around the perimeter of the 'flag'.

One disadvantage of this course is that the finishing straight is much longer than usual.

The full results are here. No records were broken, I was only lapped by one person, but we enjoyed the outing, with Wythenshawe Hall sparkling in the sunshine.

We were thrown out of the tea room when Rufus was spotted nestling comfortably on Paul's lap, so our coffees were consumed outdoors, before Sue and Jan went off to other commitments, and Paul and I adjourned to the friendly, dog welcoming Di Martino Caffé in Timperley, for better coffee and delicious cake.

On Sunday I was due to volunteer as a marshal for the Community run at Wythenshawe, but 'Health and Safety' intervened, so Sue and I enjoyed a 5km stroll from home, through De Quincey Park to Stamford Brook, and back via the canal towpath.

De Quincey Park

The crispy weather has continued. There was no risk today of being hit by a golf ball on my walk to Altrincham.

King George V Pool was still frozen over, with coots and moorhens visibly practicing their skating techniques.

In Altrincham, a large specimen of 'graffiti has appeared in front of some closed shops. (Click on the image for a better view.)

Saturday 2 December 2023

Friday = Isabella Day (60)

We got home with Isabella on a frosty day. Some music came first.

Then a trip to 'Jump Heaven'.

Great fun!

Isabella: "I want some apple crumble please."
Sue: We have run out. You need to make some."

Weighing out and mixing to make crumble

Sugar, butter and baking powder, then more mixing

Then the apples need cutting up

Yet more mixing, then the crumble miture is laid neatly onto the apple mixture, and baked for a while

Simply too much to eat in one go!

Monday 27 November 2023

Sunday 26 November 2023 - Leith Hill

This morning turned out to be cold and grey under a leaden sky. All 13 of us, after another luxurious breakfast (we are 'stuffed' after last night's huge quantities of food), made our way to a car park at Friday Street.

From here, it's an easy walk to the summit of Leith Hill, first passing a pond (above) on which the only splash of colour was provided by a couple of Mandarin ducks. 

The gentle ascent could be described as 'a leafy trudge'. Not unpleasant, and very chatty.

We spent some time at the tower, where a café was active as a honeypot for walkers and cyclists. 

We managed fine with our fresh flasks and another helping of Sue's tasty Nanaimo cake.

Onwards from here, Robin, Jenny and Jess soon took a short cut back to the car park as they had long drives ahead of them.

The rest of us continued along pleasant forest paths, before encountering a surprisingly steep hill.

Then it was a gentle descent back to the pond and thence the car park, for lunch and goodbyes before we all headed to our respective next destinations. 

Here's our 11km route. What a pleasant morning, and an excellent weekend. Thanks to Mike for organising it.

Saturday 25 November 2023

Saturday 25 November 2023 - A Walk from Peaslake

The Hurtwood Inn in Peaslake is our base this weekend.

After a frosty night and an excellent breakfast (no parkrun for us today), all 13 of us assembled by the village cross amidst a mayhem of mountain bikers.

We were soon on our way, on a path that seemed to be forbidden to some of us.

Holmbury Hill was reached after a forest walk. Views stretched to Canary Wharf in the distance, and in the other direction across the wealds of the Downs.

Sue produced a box of specially concocted Nanaimo Bars. Delicious!

Here's the view across the Weald.

We continued on good paths, very cold in the dips, towards several more viewpoints, on this lovely sunny day. 

Pitch Hill provided more good views.

We passed a windmill on our way to our lunch stop at Reynards Hill.

During the day we encountered many mountain bikers, hikers, students practicing map reading, and dog walkers. All enjoying the fine, dry weather.

Soon after lunch, Robin and Jenny took a shortcut back. The rest of us - me, Sue, Tom, Mac, Phil, Sue, Mike, Jess, David, Richard and Jenny - continued to another viewpoint. 

By now the sun was close to setting, lighting the trees from our position in a long sunken lane.

Some edible mushrooms were found, as well as this 'Poor Man's Licorice'.

We were back by 4pm, to the inn, where the mayhem of mountain bikers was continuing unabated.

Here's our route - 16km with a bit of ascent, taking a leisurely six hours or so.