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Monday, 18 August 2014

A week in Suffolk

Im sure I  have bored you all silly, with my talk of retirement, but the day arrived, and now I'm a man of leisure ?

Because Sue had some leave left (after booking time off for the cruises). We decided to book a cottage for a week in Suffolk.

Sue chose The Old Dairy in Middleton, a village we stayed in at Easter this year, and liked it so much we went back.

It was also a chance to try out my new toy

So after lunch on Saturday, we packed and drove the 50 miles to the cottage. We arrived in glorious sunshine (with a hint of black clouds) but managed to sit out on the patio area once we had unpacked for a few glasses of vino.

The cottage was compact, but well appointed, and we were made to feel at home by the owner Liz. So if you venture up this way and want a cottage to stay in, this one comes recommended by us.

Sunday morning saw not very pleasant weather, so it was a mid morning trip to Saxmundham to purchase some essentials.

In the afternoon we popped down to RSPB Minsmere, in the hope that the rain would stop, and we could have a short walk. But it was not meant to be as there was no let up in the rain (until we left of course).
But we did manage a coffee and cake before we left.

On Monday we took the short cross country trip to near Stradbroke to see my brother Gerald and his wife Carole, and what a great day we had.

As Tuesday dawned the weather take a turn for the better, so we went back to Minsmere. If you are a fan of the BBC spring watch programme, it was broadcast from Minsmere this year.

Having been here at Easter, Minsmere looked very different as there were less birds about, but the butterflies helped make up for that

Wednesday, we travelled south to Snape Maltings, which as the names suggests is an old converted maltings in the village of Snape. We only thought we would be there for an hour of so, but no, we spent most of the day there, wandering around the many shops, then lunch in the local pub, and then a boat trip after that.
Culminating in a very nice ice cream sitting on the river bank.

For Thursday, we went cross border to Norfolk to Diss, another market town we had not been to before, but again how charming it was.
Just a word note to all you gents out there, at the top of town on the right hand side, there is a jewellry shop that also has a workshop that makes unique pieces (the wallet did take a bit of a battering), but as I had my new toy, I had to treat Sue.
The evening saw us go back to pick up Gerald and Carole and go out for a meal at their local pub.

And so to our last day Friday, my brother had recommended that we go to Aldeburgh as we had not been before. I managed a bit of celeb spotting as I saw Michael Gambon sitting outside a cafe taking his morning cup of coffee.

As you can see above, we were bathed in sunshine, until about 5 minutes after I took the photo, then the heavens opened for a short, but very sharp shower. 
Time for lunch saw us go back to the White Hart where we had stopped at Easter just to see if the food was still as good. And the answer is YES.

The chef must have known I had been there before as I ordered the rabbit pie, and it came with a big R on the pastry.

So our week came to an end, and what a week it had been, we had visited some great places that we had never been to before, and fell in love with Suffolk even more.

If you want to see some more photos I took, you can find them here

And so in a few weeks, we are back to cruising on P&O Adonia, it's great this retirement lark !!

Monday, 4 August 2014

Lest we forget

I'm sure you all know that Monday 4th August 2104 is 100 years since the start of World War I.

To mark theis notable anniversary Kentwell Hall held a recreation of "The Eve of War" the weekend before.

Most well known for their Tudor recreations, the Hall is steeped in history from Tudor times to modern day.

So, on the Sunday, we took our grandson Josh so see this living history.

The recruitment tent was kept busy for most of the day. they were fairly lenient with the age for recruitment, and said that they could have taken our 9 year old grandson Josh :-)

But it was soon time for a tea break

Some of the gentry played ball games on the lawn

Whilst some of the locals tried to "object" to the army officer

But amidst all of this, the post mistress still had to sort and deliver her mail.

And so the glorious day came to an end, we had all leant a small something of that time, and the sacrifice that had been made.

If you ever stop on a cruise across the sea, and you like your history, then a visit to Tyne Cot Cemetery comes highly recommended