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NEWCASTLE-UPON-TYNE & YORKSHIRE

We spent 2 nights with our friends the Bracchis, Sue, Kev,

and their lads, Michael and Matthew, in Newcastle, before moving down through the Yorkshire moors towards the coast.
The Bracchi clan - Sue, Michael, Matthew and Kev

The Bracchi clan - Sue, Michael, Matthew and Kev

Beloved friends

Beloved friends

We stopped off in the pretty little port of Whitby, which would have been far more appealing if it were not raining. We spent the next 2 nights at the Scarborough campsite, also mostly in the rain. Campervans come in all shapes and sizes!
The big ..........

The big ..........

and the small of campervan life!

and the small of campervan life!

Sandi had an interesting experience in the shower next morning. There were only 2 shower cubicles and several people queuing. A foreign woman went into the one cubicle then proceeded to have a long conversation on her cellphone, before even turning the shower on. Sandi eventually got into the other cubicle and showered while the woman continued to chat. The woman, eventually finishing her call, started singing tunelessly, and turned on the shower taps. Sandi had just finished drying herself in the adjacent cubicle, when her feet got spattered in warm, smelly urine from the woman next door! Speechless, she washed and dried her feet again, while the woman continued singing and showering. This was all a bit too ethno-bungo for Sandi who fled the shower, only to find that it was raining cats and dogs outside. Undaunted she put her towel over her head, and headed out in the torrential rain – in the wrong direction! After 10 minutes of running around in circles, with all the caravans looking the same to her unspectacled eyes, she found herself at the reception office, where they offered her an umbrella. “Too late” she cried, but was quickly shown where the van was - in site #13! She arrived at the van and warned David not to utter a word, but he couldn't control himself, and was in hysterics of mirth. According to him he was very sympathetic. " Bah humbug" she declares!! Drenched to her underwear, she dried off after her “second shower”, and by this time laughing herself, dressed in whatever dry clothes could be found, ready for a walk into town via the cliffs.

The cliffs were only a short walk away, so we set out during a brief spell of sunshine, skidding our way in the mud towards Scarborough town.
View northwards from the slippery cliff top

View northwards from the slippery cliff top

View across Scarborough beach, towards the town

View across Scarborough beach, towards the town

As we descended to the beach and the town itself the heavens opened, yet again, and the hail came down. Once again we were trapped by the elements! We discovered that Sandi’s jacket was not waterproof, and umbrellas do not function inside out! Remembering our Bulgarian hail-fest during the Rose festival, we just stood there in fits of laughter. After the worst had passed we squelched past all the beach-goers crammed into their colourful beach huts, drinking coffee and revelling in their dryness. With a touch of “sense of humour failure” we shopped for a more waterproof jacket - a tough, yachting, garment - and vowed to take the next bus home [to the campsite] as we were not going to squelch in our soggy shoes for 2 miles to get back. The next bus was in an hour and by then we were in a better mood, as the sun came out and dried up all the rain. We ended up walking back and stopped at the pub for an excellent carvery for £3.50. We [especially Sandi] felt we really deserved it!

Had a long drive next day to Kidderminster [near Manchester] where we met up with Jonathan Mills [Judy’s son, the Druid, who invited us to the wonderful Stonehenge experience]. We took him for supper in the pub nearby, before turning in for the night in his driveway.
Lovely rain-dappled lillies in Jonathan's driveway

Lovely rain-dappled lillies in Jonathan's driveway

Another long drive next day down to Ebford where we spent 3 days sorting out the van and packing for Cape Town. Sandi had fun capturing the summer flowers and fruit in Judy and Rob's garden.
Sunflower and Bee

Sunflower and Bee

Crab apples ripening

Crab apples ripening


Judy's beautiful dahlia

Judy's beautiful dahlia

Judy invited us to an art exhibition in Topsham, which she had organised and in which some of her paintings were exhibited. We were charmed by some watercolours of "The house that moved", since David's uncle, David, was the architect responsible for this historical feat.
The house that moved

The house that moved


A painting of a typical English countryside that took our fancy

A painting of a typical English countryside that took our fancy

David took the van to get 2 cracks in the windscreen repaired and, £40 later, got back just in time to catch the bus to Heathrow. We were each taking different flights home, with Sandi flying direct and David flying via JHB. David tried to charm the air steward into bumping him up to Business class as it was his birthday while in the air, but she would have none of it [his charm must be wearing off!] The birthday boy was however welcomed home with open arms!!
Janet welcoming David and Sandi home on 5/8/09

Janet welcoming David and Sandi home on 5/8/09

Posted by davidsandi 10:36 Archived in England

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