I guess we started our sort of holidays already tired after having spent months working on the house and preparing for the move. We knew that our visit to Oswestry would be pretty hectic but it has really tired us out big time! Don’t get me wrong, it has been absolutely wonderful seeing so many people we hadn’t seen for a long time, having a chance to reminisce and to catch up.
Between the three of us in the past two weeks we have pretty much used most forms of transport, even though exhausting, I must admit, and I am sure I can speak on behalf of the three of us in saying that it has been fun!!
Days Out –
We had several days out which were most enjoyable, the first one was Park Hall Farm in Whittington, we were joined by Mike and Ian who also seemed to have enjoyed themselves too! We were incredibly lucky with the weather, Kati had a chance to groom a horse, feed the lambs, hold a rabbit, watched some pig racing (or race pigging as she calls it), we then had a go in the Maze which was good fun too. All in all, a good day was had by all.
Canal Boating (Llangollen)
Oh yes, once again, we were incredibly lucky with the weather, Mike (Cathy’s dad) rented a canal boat for the day, we all met up in Llangollen ready for relaxing day on the canal. We met up at 09:30 and were soon on a canal boat receiving instructions how to use it safely. For those of you who are not too familiar with canals, all I can say is that they are not all that wide and you need to have pretty good aim, steering it is also an art. Mike (Cathy’s dad) had a go first and did an excellent job, it was then my turn. At this point I would love to boast as to how good I was, however, anyone who was on board would completely disagree with that. Katja kept asking as to why was daddy crashing the boat from side to side. It became very clear, very quickly that I was not the best man for the job, or the safest one for that matter so I decided to do photos instead. Andy (Cathy’s brother) took over from me and did an excellent job, so, between him and Mike they took care of ensuring we didn’t crash (too many times or into anything too expensive, oh, apart from the floating restaurant which we nudged ever so gently), the rest of us had a very relaxing day. We chugged along at an impressive 4 mph past other boats and some of the most stunning scenery in Wales. The highlight of the trip is going over the Pontcysyllte aqueduct which was simply breathtaking. As you can see on the photo, there is a tow path on one side and a sheer drop on the other, going over it on a canal boat is a real experience! Cathy and I had made some sandwiches so after the aqueduct, we stopped for a spot of lunch before heading back. Kati decided all the excitement was too much so she made herself nice and comfortable and slept for an hour or so on the way back.
Brimstage Maze (The Wirral)
Brimstage Maze was absolutely fantastic, the day was split in two as in the morning we met up with Mike and Ros and two of their grand kids who are slightly older than Katja. It was great seeing them as we hadn’t seen them since they visited us in Spain in October last year. Brimstage Maze has loads of outdoor activities, most of them are outside, yet again we were extremely lucky with the weather, even though there were several threatening ominous clouds, we managed to dodge the rain. In the afternoon, we were met by Jenn and her daughters, Jenn is a friend of ours from Spain who very kindly gave Sophie (our dog) a home as she couldn’t come to Qatar. The girls had great fun playing on the inflatable giant inflatable pillows and outdoor laser questing. There was a clown on site and Kati even had a chance to do some tight rope walking as well as try her hand at a balancing ball. After a fun packed day, a certain little lady slept all the way back to Wrexham where we stopped to pick up some birthday presents for Kati as well as to buy new shoes for school!
Steam Train Trip (Llangollen)
Our final full day in Europe arrived accompanied by rain, however, this was not a problem as we had a pleasant train ride planned for today along with Mike and Judy. But before all this could happen, we had to wash the car, drop some of our stuff off at Mike and Judy’s before dropping the car off at Malcolm and Emma’s. At this point I would like to say a great big thank you to them for letting us leave the car in their farm for the winter!
After doing this we headed off to Llangollen and before going back to the mid 1850’s we had a hot cup of coffee before setting off on our train adventure.
The steam train from Llangollen is a most pleasant trip across the gorgeous Welsh countryside, it is a real opportunity to take some time out from hectic everyday life and try to imagine life a century or so ago. It is incredible thinking and imagining that the countryside hasn’t changed all that much since the days in which steam trains were the main mode of transport across the Welsh countryside.
Apart from seeing friends and catching up, these days out will be firmly etched in our memories for years to come, it has been great fun.
We are now all packed and I think we are all ready to set off on our next adventure, tomorrow we will head off to Manchester airport setting off from Ellesmere at some ungodly hour so it will be an early night for us tonight.
I would like to say a big thank you to all those who took time out from their busy schedules to meet up with us as well as to Andy and Tim for their hospitality. Tonight we will have one final take away (Chinese) before I go on a strict diet. When we were at Mike and Judy’s I thought I’d weigh myself, hmmm, not too sure it was such a good idea as I seem to have put on 10 Kg since the last time I weighed myself a year or so ago in Bulgaria I can’t believe I now weigh………………………..