Sue and Martin in Mallorca 2019

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

Wednesday 24 July 2024

Saturday 20 July 2024 - Wythenshawe parkrun #578

330 runners and walkers duly assembled at 9am on 20 July 2024. The Run Director, Scarlett, brought everyone to order.

And then ... they were off.

Sophie was well ahead by the time she started the second lap of the 5km course.

A few minutes later, Jan went ambling past.

Sue was too fast for my camera.

I was volunteering, as Funnel Manager today, which saw my duties commence when Sophie stormed home in 18:04.

Later, this is where I had to direct the runners, and encourage them to "stay in order, please."

And this is where a small gang, reunited after their various holiday breaks, enjoyed a post run coffee or two.

Full results are here.

Sunday 21 July 2024

Wednesday = Isabella Day (70)

Switching from Friday to Wednesday meant that Grandad Martin had sole custody of Isabella on this week's visit, as Grandma Sue was swimming and paddleboarding in the Lake District.

We had a lovely day, starting with a biscuit factory in our kitchen. The three year old has become an expert mixer of ingredients, (even whilst finishing her mid morning snack!) and I no longer need to be poised with a brush to remove spilt debris!

In fact, every last drop from the bowl went into the biscuits (if not the little girl's digestive system).

Cooking is in batches - ten minutes each. The first batch must be tested immediately!

It passed the test. The rest can be left to cool.

A magic box then turned Thomas into a teapot, and produced about 30 previously unseen Matchbox toys from an earlier generation. There was lots of playing, music, a hearty lunch of beans and fish fingers, Paw Patrol, Jenga, jigsaws, a search for valuables and lego roads in the loft, and an attempt at scooting in Wythenshawe Park, before it was time to go home. Only one picture was taken.

Thursday 18 July 2024

Monday 15 July 2024 - A Visit to RHS Bridgewater gardens

Sue and I chose to cycle along the Bridgewater Canal towpath, to RHS Bridgewater and back, just four weeks since our last visit.

It was a lovely day to be by the canal, and on the outward journey we were joined by another cyclist who just wanted a bit of company and some route guidance.

On the return leg we encountered a runner near the Trafford Centre. He was going like the clappers, so I stayed behind and offered encouragement. He was traveling at about 11 mph, which is a nice cycling pace for me. He turned round in Stretford and offered thanks for the encouragement (I had wondered whether I was upsetting him).

Here are a few canal photos taken around Worsley. The colours reflect the mining history of this canal.

The gardens have changed significantly in the past month. The following pictures represent its July colours.

There's probably little change in the cactus beds since our last visit

Here, a lot of similar plants, in a bid to establish which variety is best;
the blank area on the right is awaiting similar treatment

Back home for lunch - it's an hour/ten miles each way.

Later, a jazz hotpot supper and entertainment from Rae Owens and his Chicago Teds. Excellent.

We left with a bottle of Bollinger, one of over 30 raffle prizes.

Saturday 13 July 2024 - Wythenshawe parkrun #577

Milling around before the start

After a month's break from running, a gentle jog at the back of the field seemed appropriate.

Geared up for 300 finishers

The dinosaur has become a regular sight on the start line

And they're off...

Afterwards, Winston Runners enjoyed a 'love-in'!

Then coffees with Jan and Robin, and Jenny and Owen (thanks, Jenny). It's good to be back, after a great holiday.

The following day I did the Wythenshawe Community Run and finished with the tail walker in over 37 minutes. A Covid test a few days later explained the slow time.

Full results are here.

Tuesday 16 July 2024

Friday 12 July 2024 - Around Lower Withington

After dropping Isabella off at home, Sue and I grabbed a bite to eat and then headed to Lower Withington to join Andrew and Bridget on a short evening walk planned by Andrew.

A bit of drizzle didn't deter us, and we were soon enjoying the good paths resulting from funding by way of grants to a local farmer. He is further rewarded by being paid to convert crop fields to wildlife meadows. It's good to see these, albeit they don't match the variety of flora encountered in the alpine meadows from where we have recently returned.

This is the spot where on one occasion a goat ate my map. Today they were sensibly under cover from the drizzle.

Chicory graced the hedgerows.

For once, the cows ignored us. Often at this time of day they offer a frisky approach.

Here's the team, enjoying  the countryside of 'Deepest Cheshire'.

And here's our 5 km route. It's short, flat, and has no stiles - all requirements for Andrew these days, but we aren't complaining.

Then it was back to Andrew's house for chat and drinks. A fine way to spend an evening.