So an international eating week has passed, Sunday Malaysian at our newly discovered 'Blue Ocean' with Alex and Rob, Monday Indian at Diwans with the Monday Club boys Tim, Mark and Bill, Tuesday Thai with Denise and Paul at a lovely new brasserie in Solihull, quite a departure for D&P but absolutely delicious, we wait to hear if they can eat their way through the menu!
|The 'Sunday Tea Club' LtoR: Ian, Corinne, Crystal, Manu, Helen, Jackie & Brian|
|Sooty cat having her breakfast at the table|
Wednesday I roasted some chicken and vegetables for Abi and mum Mary as they passed through to collect post, and Thursday we went to the Chinese Quarter in Birmingham for 'Sunday tea club' with special guest Corinne, visiting having left the UK about 10 years ago for Australia where she has recently finished her veterinary training. Lovely to catch up with her, like she's never been away.
|The packed baggage in dry bags. One years clothing there!|
Friday was a ‘use up the contents of the fridge’ pasta meal, but that doesn't really count as Italian, Saturday hog roast at a wedding, Sunday I cooked boeuf bourguignon and yesterday proper steak and ale pie, in proper pastry with more vegetables than it is possible to eat at the Weighbridge pub in Alvechurch just up from mum. Tonight possibly Indian again, though it may be a delivery as despite only being 17.00 I've just heard the cat flap lock, which it does at dark, as the sky is amazing, and the rain has started along with the thunder and lightning!
|A wooden sculpture in Droitwich with Pauline, Jackie and Richard|
So have we managed to get our fill of spicy Asian food and traditional English cooking to keep us going for the next year? I don't know, but we've done our best!
We are back at Abi's for one last night as she is taking us to the airport tomorrow. We spent last night with mum and took the car to the garage to see if he can sell it. I wouldn't mind if he can't as it will then be there for our return, but at least someone will have been keeping an eye on it and turning it over occasionally! The kitchen stuff was returned to Helen and Ian's loft yesterday when they fed us a quick bite of lunch, so all we are now left with is our rucksacks with one years clothes in. If you get bored of seeing the same old things, just think how bored I'll be of wearing them!
|Droitwich is famous for its old salt mines. The many underground shafts has cause lots of subsidence and this is typical of buildings in the town, some of them dating from the sixteenth century|
|Jackie, Pauline and Richard amongst more old buildings in Droitwich|
We even had a wedding reception to go to on Saturday, my cousin Nick, who despite being a young man in my mind is 35 and 6'6 at least. A last minute affair with the actual wedding having happened in June. It was good to catch up with various members of the family I haven't seen for years and to see Charles and Caroline one last time.
|Jackie, Richard and Pauline walking up Droitwich High Street|
|Jackie feeling at home amongst old BBC equipment in Droitwich|
We've had a lovely time saying our farewells and I even managed to catch up with an old colleague, Sarah, I hadn't seen for a couple of years. I had my last trip to the dentist who was very pleased with the state of my gums so hopefully all the time and expense has been worth it, and we had a lovely day out in Droitwich with Mum and Richard, her friend who we have spent a couple of days in Ledbury with when we've been down there. He lives in Droitwich, a place neither of us have actually ever been to so he gave us the full history walking tour, which was very interesting, and he is a hoot, so a good time was had by all.
|At Nick and Rosies wedding. LtoR: Lucy, Charles, Elizabeth, Caroline, Jackie|
So the trip starts tomorrow with a week of chilling in Spain to say goodbye to Dad and Elizabeth as we won't see them for another year, and we last saw them last November, oh except they were at the wedding on Saturday too! Well it made sense when the plans were made!
|The bride and groom making their vows in the marquee at Michael and Trishas house in Princes Risborough|
|The marquee attached to Michael and Trishas house in their expansive garden. This short was taken near the tennis court and swimming pool with about as much garden behind as can be seen here. It's a BIG house and garden!|
|Jackie in her old clothes helping Abi clean her caravan. We then went to the pub for a beer on a Sunday afternoon and met Ray Fullerton, wife Caroline, their and John's children all dressed up in their Sunday best, and us in our old scruffy clothes!|