Feeling at home – a bit

Our second weekend at Roseland Parc, and time to look around the area a bit.

Saturday morning we jumped in the car and took a trip down the little lanes of Cornwall in search of a nearby beach. I had forgotten just how narrow the lanes are at times. Our aim was the closest beach called ‘Portloe’ that is just a handful of miles from us.

Well, we found it, but by the time we arrived in the little fishing village, my stress levels of narrow lanes and meeting cars left me less than interested in stopping. We didn’t find anywhere to park so we drove through and carried on down the narrow pathways that were advertised as roads. I didn’t see anything that resembled a true beach, as the village is more for the small fishing boats.

After a further few miles of getting up close and personal with the hedges and oncoming car drivers, we came to another beach that looked far more promising. There were several people on surfboards plus quite a stretch of what looked like sand.

Once again there was nowhere obvious to park.

We decided to give up on the idea and continued between the hedges and back towards roads where my proximity warning alarms weren’t continually beeping.

It was only about an hour’s drive, but we decided to ignore this area for a week or two until the holidaymakers have taken their surfboards back home.

After lunch we both went for a swim, and I extended my distance a little as I gave my legs and arms a short burst of activity. That was enough for the day, and I felt we had earnt an evening bottle of wine while we watched the television.

On Sunday morning we drove (wide roads this time) to St Austell and B&Q. It was time to buy a second new toilet seat. When the local handyman/plumber was repairing a leaking sink waste, he sat too heavily on our toilet seat and broke it. The seat was an obviously rather cheap one, and the handyman is rather large gentleman.

We also bought some plants for the area outside the front door to make it feel a little more homely.

With the toilet seat fitted, I turned my attention to the cricket. As I looked text messages showing the score every few minutes I accepted that we were going to lose the match. There was just one wicket left before England lost the third test, and the ashes, so I turned to the boring dross on the television instead. Just before it was time to eat, I took a look at the cricket score again and was amazed to see that we were within 9 runs of winning.

I listened to the final few balls of the match and whooped in delight as Ben Stokes somehow managed to scratch the winning runs from what was a almost certain defeat.

Well done young man!

Now can the rest of the England team please take note of how to avoid getting out so easily.

Monday morning we drove the other way past Truro and down to Falmouth. It seemed rather quiet on the roads for a Bank Holiday. Falmouth was a little busier but not too bad. We went into the National Maritime Museum that is a favourite of ours. We now have entrance for the next 12 months to come back. We stayed long enough to get coffee and a look around the new Titanic exhibition but then turned our attention to shopping for more bits for the home.

Today it was a roller blind for the kitchen window, plus some white paint for the window sill. That will keep me busy tomorrow.

The drive home was not so quiet with the roads were now packed with tourists making the most of their last day in Cornwall before rushing home for work tomorrow morning.

The afternoon in Roseland Parc was a quiet one, and I fell asleep on the balcony in the sunshine.

We have been invited to a gettogether at one of our neighbours at 5:00, and I am looking forward to seeing some new faces.

No Boxes Today

First thing this morning we both went for a swim. The centre’s pool is only small but gives me a chance to stretch out lazy muscles, and exercise tired joints. The pair of us were the only people in the pool, so Deb was able to attempt her tumble turns while I floundered up and down. We were only in the pool for about 15 minutes but that was sufficient for me.

After the exercise it was time to try out Truro’s Park and Ride system. They have huge car parks to the west and east of the city that are serviced every 10 to 15 minutes by the modern and clean buses which go on a loop between the two car parks. We have used it in the past while on holiday, but that was from the western side, but our new home is on the east.

Car parking is free, and the bus tickets are £2 each or a family ticket is £4. The ride was little more than five minutes to the centre of the city and much more pleasant than driving a car in the busy traffic while looking for a parking space.

Our visit to Truro was little more than a chance to try out the park and ride and to have a break from cardboard. So we had a cup of coffee (with a cake) and then bought a few bits to allow our home making to continue.

Deb and I were only out for about 90 minutes, and home by just after 11:00.

The sun is shining today, but a chilly wind made it slightly uncomfortable to sit out on the balcony. The forecast suggests the wind will drop tomorrow giving us a warm weekend.

Yesterday evening we both went to see our new doctor. The surgery is small with an office where appointments are made and where prescriptions are dispensed. A waiting room has chairs for about 10 people with the usual racks of outdated magazines.

The doctor was running late but considering we were able to book an appointment so quickly cancels out a bit of a wait. We both had 20 minute slots, and I was first. Our records have already arrived from Kingstone so our history was available to be seen by the new doctor.

I overran my time a little but came out with a letter for an x-ray of my knee, and an appointment for a week’s time to have an injection in my shoulder. Oh, and even some new pills to try and regulate my blood pressure a little better.

I think the doctor was much happier with Deb, as her session was much shorter than mine.

Well, that brings us up to date. I think I will spend some time this afternoon getting back to my new book. ‘From the Furnace to the Freezer’ was planned to be on sale by the end of the year, but there is a lot to be done still.

At Home in Cornwall

Well, Deb and I have been in our new Cornish home for just over a week. We moved in on Wednesday 14th August and since then we have done little else than empty cardboard boxes and try and find places to put all our worldly goods.

Oh what a lot we have got!

There have been several breaks to go shopping, trying out Sainsburys in Truro and Asda in St Austell. Currently Sainsburys is winning the battle for our custom, but there are other options to experiment with.

On Tuesday we had another shopping moment that took us to a local furniture shop to find ourselves a wardrobe. I won’t mention the name of the store, in fear of annoying them, but they were incredibly expensive, and the quality of the wardrobes didn’t appear any different from what we have seen elsewhere.

Anyway, as we crept away from this shop, we spotted a large high-street chain that might be more to our bank balance. After 20 minutes in there we had bought a wardrobe that looked quite similar to what we saw in the first shop but with a figure 2 missing from the front end of the four figured price.

That will be delivered in early October, so until then we will continue with our portable stands in the bedroom. We spent a lot more money on Tuesday when we booked ourselves a cruise for the end of October. That will be on Oceana going to the Canary Islands for a fortnight. It was really cheap because of a complete re-programming of the ship’s planned schedule after cancelling all cruises to and from Dubai.

So what else have we been up to?

Well, the pair of us have been ploughing through correspondence and attempting to update our details with the vast numbers of organisations and businesses we deal with. That is not a pleasant game, especially as neither of us can remember our new telephone number yet and have to have it jotted on a piece of paper wherever we are working.

I think we have completed the vast majority of the important ones.

On Sunday we went to Truro to find a new charging lead for Deb’s tablet – the original was left in a hotel bedroom. We also bought a small storage box for one of our balconies, and a bench with storage for out side the front door. They will take some of the items that couldn’t be found a home inside the apartment.

There was afternoon tea on Sunday evening when we met up with a few of the residents. There are several of these gatherings during the week based mainly on coffee and cake, although a couple feature the bar being open as well.

Deb managed a first swim in the pool yesterday (Wednesday) but I am struggling with my arthritic joints and needed a quiet sit down instead.

The box situation is getting better with just a single figure number of cardboard boxes hidden in a cupboard. The walls are finally sprouting pictures, and the stress levels have reduced. Deb is currently sitting out the front of the bench with her tablet, and I can hear quite a regular series of “Hellos” as people pass by.

We have been invited to a late afternoon tea on Monday at one of the nearby neighbours. They are as interested in find out out about us, as we are about them.

Late this afternoon (Thursday) we have appointments with our new doctor. He might be content with Deb’s problems but I could be less popular when I recount my history, and list the joints in trouble at the moment.

OK, I think it is time I made a cup of coffee for us, so I will get this posted.

All being well I will be updating life in Cornwall more regularly as we make ourselves at home.

Goodbye herefordshire

Tuesday morning, and the removal men are loading our belongings on their truck. They will be finished soon, and then Deb will finish cleaning the last of the rooms before we set off for Cornwall.

It has been a long drawn out move, with lots of changes of date , but finally it is the moment to go to our new home.

Hopefully we will get to the retirement village in time to pick up the keys this afternoon so that we can say hello to the apartment and switch on the fridge, before we spend the night in a hotel. The removal truck will be there tomorrow morning to unload.

It is time to say goodbye to Kingstone and the wonderful friends we have made here over the last six years.

Thanks to you all.

A Break from Moving

On Wednesday we were going away for a couple of nights to get a break from cardboard boxes and legal frustrations. We weren’t leaving home until after lunch so I decided to call the removal company to check all was well.

There was a message to say that the number I had dialled was not available.

I checked, and retried a number of times with the same response.

PANIC!

To cut the story short, we attempted mobile numbers, left messages on Facebook, but with no success. I decided I had to drive to find their depot, and I had to do it before we went away.

Sadly, the postcode address did not get me anywhere near a removal company yard, so after several ‘U Turns’ and searches down lanes, I gave up.

Before returning home I rang Deb to see if there had been any responses…

“the number you have dialled is not recognised”

Realisation dawned. It was OUR phone line that was faulty, not the removal company’s.

I got home and explained to Deb my thoughts, and attempted to ring the removal company on my mobile.

Success, and all was well again.

It was time for lunch, and then we set of for the 70 mile drive to the Billesley Manor Hotel in Warwickshire.

Sitting in 11 acres of grounds near the village of Alcester, the hotel is around five miles from Stratford upon Avon. It is a stunning 16th century manor house that has been extended and turned into a beautiful place for a bit of quiet relaxation.

It has over 70 bedrooms that are all comfortable, and range from those created in the many yard buildings, to those in the manor itself. They are all large , light, and airy. We had one that overlooked a topiary area of the gardens with Yew Tree sculptures to delight, and sometimes confuse the mind. In the distance we could hear the splashing of a massive fountain that sat in a lawned area where there is even a helicopter landing zone for those very exclusive visitors.

The room’s bed was gigantic and there was plenty of wardrobe and drawer space… for a short break anyway. The bathroom had a long bath and good fittings with space for bits again. The room even had a discrete low level light to avoid having to turn on the main light with its extractor fan in the middle of the night.

My only reservation about the room was the noise made by the ill fitting doors of the wardrobe and bathroom.

Our meals were included in the package and I enjoyed the dinners each night as well as the usual choice at the buffet breakfast.

Of course the drinks were expensive, but with wine also included in the deal, we didn’t spend a lot.

There was however one problem with the hotel. It was infested with wasps. If you sat with a drink in the bars, or outside on the terrace, you were immediately visited by the little creatures.

The staff simply told us to ignore them, but I have always had a personal hatred of the stinging beasts. I am sure that if approached, a local pest controller could have done something to sort out ‘Wasp World’.

Anyway, we weren’t overly concerned, and enjoyed the many quiet spots in the gardens to read and doze away the stress of moving home. The pool was quite large and we used up a bit of energy in there as a change from relaxation.

I would recommend this hotel for anyone looking for a little bit of relaxation from life’s stresses.

On the morning of our stay we drove to the ‘Park and Ride’ system just about three miles away and used it to go into Stratford on the bus.

This was absolutely perfect to avoid the traffic, and very good value.

In Stratford we looked around and spent half an hour in the amazing Butterfly Farm. There was time for coffee and cake of course before we made our way back to the hotel.

By Friday lunchtime we were home again to our cardboard boxes, but our heads had been cleared of stress, and I felt so much more comfortable with the week to come.

The phone line has not been restored. Apparently it would take longer to book an engineer to reconnect the line, than we will remain at this address. At least we still have the internet, and the mobile phone, but it is a little frustrating with the amount of calls that will be needed over the days leading up to the move.

So, once again we have to sit back and wait for the legal process to grind on. Tomorrow (Monday) the solicitor should be back from holiday, and will sign the form on his desk when he gets in to work. When that gets back to the conveyancing solicitors, the process can kick back into gear, and exchange should be possible.

On Thursday (hopefully) we will be waking up early, and beginning the final bits of packing. Our removal men should be here by just after 9:00 and we will be able to set off for Cornwall before lunchtime.

On Friday morning, after a night in the guest suite at the retirement village, we will wait for the phone call to confirm completion and pick up the key of our new home.

PLEASE!