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Archive for December, 2020

Thank you all for reading my random posts, your πŸ‘s and comments, I appreciate them all.

May this new year bring you fun, laughter, joy, peace and everything good

Stay healthy and safe…..wherever in the world you are πŸŒπŸŒŽπŸŒπŸ—ΊπŸ§­

πŸŽ†πŸŽ†πŸŽ†πŸŽ†πŸŽ†πŸŽ†πŸŽ‰πŸŽŠπŸŽ‰πŸŽŠπŸŽ‰πŸŽŠπŸ§§2️⃣0️⃣2️⃣1️⃣

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Well, would you just look at that!! Just over 24 hours to go (UK time) and we say goodbye to 2020. I can hardly believe it.

Not that the new year, 2021 is going to start off very well at all with now 8 in 10 people in the UK going into tier 4 and virtual lockdown. Although 2020 didn’t do too well at all, 2021 is not going to get off to a very good start.

To say I’m peeved at our useless government would be an understatement because tomorrow brings the double whammy of the final twist of the Brexit knife and the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic to really give this year a bad name. And do I believe our feckless PM when he spouts out his nonsense about having got a good deal?? No. I do not.

Meanwhile I, like millions of others, am trying desperately to keep my head and not fall into the pit of despair at the way life seems to be spiralling out of control. To that end I’m not watching the news nor reading the papers and still off Facebook. I am however spending quality time with my family and walking….walking and walking. I’m also grateful to still have work.

Although I only started in April, having the Conqueror virtual challenges has been a bit of a life saver really because keeping up with my targets gets me out, and the walking, which I love, keeps me sane.

I’m nearly at the end of the 2020 challenge and yesterday I completed the Mt. Fuji challenge after a fantastic walk from Margate to Herne Bay 22.18 kms. Although it was bloody freezing, I thoroughly enjoyed the walk and was not only surprised at how quickly I walked the distance, but also at how easy it was.

I’ve long wanted to walk from Broadstairs to Reculver after visiting the Roman site a few years ago, so it was absolutely thrilling to finally make the journey, albeit only from Margate. Except for one very short section, there is a promenade/footpath and the sea the whole way. The final section to Herne Bay was a breeze…literally and figuratively. I nearly froze πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ it was so darn cold – at one stage I was sucking my thumb just to get some warmth back into it.

Fortunately the cafeteria at Reculver was open so I stopped for 15 minutes to rest my feet and warm up with a hot chocolate and a yummy caramel fudge brownie…delicious.

Herne Bay is a fascinating place with so much history, not all of it good. But they do have some fantastic fish and chips shops….😁😁 I have to give a shout out to Gary of EKS Office Equipment in Herne Bay for not only agreeing to charge my phone (for free) but also allowed me to sit in a corner of the showroom to eat my chips while I waited. It was very much appreciated.

Although I thoroughly enjoyed the walk, despite the cold, the saddest sight was the vast amount of plastic pollution that quite literally lined the whole 22kms….I could have filled 50 black bags and still not cleared it all. Its terribly painful to see all that pollution.

So as the year comes to an end, I have one final day of walking to do to finish my 2020 km challenge. Its been a most satisfying pastime and I must thank my daughter for introducing me to the Conqueror Virtual Challenges….thanks to that I have improved my fitness levels, walked extensively in areas I would likely have not except for wanting to meet the challenge of the challenges πŸ˜‰ and I’ve inadvertently accumulated way more medals than I had planned. Its been a fairly expensive hobby, but so much fun.

I’ve started on the Alps to Ocean, NZ challenge and hopefully tomorrow I’ll complete another decent distance as my final walk for 2020.

Other than that, I have finally found a suitable place to rent. Went to look at a room last night….and as Goldilocks said “it’s just right ” and I’m saying “It’ll do Pooh” πŸ˜ƒπŸ˜ƒ It’s not a huge room, but it’s on the top floor, its spacious, it has cupboards, and a bed, and a skylight for summer nights, and a desk for my books and computer and MOST importantly, the landlord said Jamie can visit. So HOORAH!!! after 18months I’ll have a place to go ‘home’ to. I’m feeling quite emotional. It means I can get my clothes out of storage, and my books and Jamie’s toys and my amazing South African mattress. I can brighten it up with my own bed linen and pictures and bits and bobs.

Today we had a photoshoot done. The fab photographer of @createdwithlightphotography on Instagram did the shoot for me with my gorgeous grandson. We had lots of fun and then had hot chocolate to warm up, because of course it was freezing on the beach. β˜ƒοΈβ˜ƒοΈβ˜ƒοΈβ˜ƒοΈ

Me and my boobee πŸ₯°πŸ₯°

Tomorrow, weather depending I’ll walk from Ramsgate to Margate one last time before I tackle the next section of my own challenge….to walk the whole of the English coast within next 5 years.

Cheers folks, thanks for reading along with me. In case I don’t get to write a post tomorrow, although I probably will, I wish you all a VERY safe, healthy and wonderful New Year.

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I’ve been invited to participate in the 2020 Travel Challenge by fellow travellers and Camino pilgrims http://wetanddustyroads.com Thank you πŸ˜ƒ

I’m honoured to be nominated and will do my very best to live up to the challenge!!

June

TheΒ Travel ChallengeΒ involves posting oneΒ favoriteΒ travel picture for each day. That’s 10 days, 10 travel pictures, and 10 nominations, without any explanation. If you take up this challenge, then you also need to nominate someone each day.

Today, on my first day of the challenge, IΒ  nominate https://journey-junkies.com

You can post any of your favorite pictures from 2020…enjoy and happy travels!!

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I’ve always liked Andrew’s videos and how he tells a story. This video is part of a series of 8 and the rest of the series can be found on YouTube. This video also features 2 Irish pilgrims. I wonder what the future holds for Andrew. His Camino journey isn’t over. Like what you see? […]

Weekend Watch #77 – A Christmas Gift from Beyond the Way

And following right behind my last shared post is this….

Having walked the Portuguese Camino in 2017, I’m always drawn to other people’s stories and experiences, and there is one for every pilgrim who walks a Camino, regardless of which one it is.

This post also brings me to a brief conversation I had with my daughter yesterday after seeing the images of the flooding and damage caused by our current storm; Bertha.

Being an imperfect human, I complain from time to time about my dissatisfaction with my difficulties at work, how it’s so mentally draining, about not having my own home…a place I can return to instead of the next b&b or guesthouse.

And then you read or hear about events that overtake the lives of others, and you realise that there is always someone else worse off…a mother trying to shelter her children and find food after a devastating earthquake, families losing their homes and belongings during a flood.

I try to remind myself that despite the difficulties and frustrations of my life, that is just what they are…and they’re neither life threatening or devastating.

And I am reminded just how fortunate I am and have been.

Have you walked the Camino in Spain? Or any pilgrimage in another country….

caminoΒ sustantivo, path, road; journey; way.

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The Church of Saint Lawrence, Eyam, Derbyshire This is the last Sunday of 2020….. no matter where you live in this world, it has been a strange and dangerous year.  We have all experienced restrictions and carried worries for ourselves, friends and family.  With that very much in mind I thought it appropriate to revisit […]

Silent Sunday…….The Last Sunday of 2020

This is a poignant and topical blog and brings us to the last Sunday of 2020 (as mentioned in this blog about another plague nearly 400 years ago). Nothing gory, just a brief overview of a village that made the ultimate sacrifice for the good of mankind.

It links in with our current situation and to the Queen’s speech on Christmas day, where she spoke about the many sacrifices of people around the country and indeed the world for the good of mankind.

I’m sure there are thousands of stories around the world of people who stepped up and went the extra mile in their countries during this pandemic. Imagine if we could pull them all together and create a book for future generations to read.

I hope you enjoy the read, its brief but sufficient. And Eyam is definitely on my list of places to visit.

Have a good day folks, and I hope you’re not being negatively affected by Storm Bertha.

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Just thrilled to have finished the Great Ocean Road, Australia virtual challenge yesterday….exactly 5 weeks & 5 days πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘ πŸšΆπŸ»β€β™€οΈπŸšΆπŸ»β€β™€οΈ

And just because I can….I signed up for another 3 and the 2021 challenge. πŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺ so some serious walking coming up next year.

My goal for 2021 is 2600kms

I’m planning on walking these as part of my 2021 challenge…along with The Ring Road of Iceland, Alps to Ocean New Zealand and the Cabot Trail in Canada.

First though, I must finish off my 2020 challenge…Getting started on the Mt. Fuji (74kms) challenge this morning I set off just on 7am and headed to the cliffs. Hardly saw a soul…it was quiet and peaceful, not a breath of air. I didn’t get a spectacular sunrise, but it was soft and pretty and I had a super walk and my total for today is 15.76kms.

The harbour is so pretty, especially now with the Christmas lights decorating many of them.

The wind came up on my way back as storm Bella started making herself felt.

With only 63.4 kms to go, I’m really excited to be reaching the end of the 2020 challenge.

Why not join me https://www.theconqueror.events/r/CE1474

I finished off the walk with fresh croissants from the CoOp πŸ₯πŸ₯ and a cup of tea with the family and then a much enjoyed sleep, but not often done. My daughter and I had a quiet walk to the cliffs and back before supper as well, after which I spent the late afternoon and evening with my beloved family and just enjoyed being with my grandson. He is ever so cute, a real little munchkin, so full of beans, and boy can he be demanding…when he says “G’anny sit down!!!” – I sit πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ usually on the floor which is not good for the old bones πŸ‘΅πŸ»πŸ¦΄πŸ¦΄πŸ¦΄πŸ˜©πŸ˜©

I hope you are all well and had a lovely 2 days. If you didn’t get to see family and friends, I truly hope that 2021 will see you all reunited.

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Merry Christmas to you from me.

Wish you all a very happy festive season πŸ€ΆπŸ»πŸŽ„πŸŽπŸŽŠπŸŽ‰

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New Year’s holidays are always the most magical moments of the year, with fabulous, cheerful and kind atmosphere.   Santa is a symbol of this joyous holiday, very popular in every country and he has lots of different names like Santa Claus, Ded Moroz,β€― Father Christmas,β€― Saint Nicholas, Sinterklaas, β€―Saint Nick, Kris Kringle and many more.  The modern […]

Santa around the world.

A lot of work has gone into this post, and I’ve certainly learned something.

Thanks Angela for such an informative review of a traditional figure πŸŽ… its always fascinating to find out where traditions begin and how they develop.

Merry Christmas one and all πŸ€ΆπŸ»πŸŽ„πŸŽŠπŸŽ‰πŸŽ

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1. I get paid tomorrow – my last income til 2021 😁😁😁 I’ll try to not spend it all in one go πŸ€‘πŸ€‘πŸ€‘

2. Which means I have less than 24 hours ⏳⏳ till I finish working for 12 days. πŸ—“

3. I get to see my family in 36 hours πŸ₯³πŸ₯³πŸ₯³πŸ‘¨β€πŸ‘©β€πŸ‘¦

4. Conqueror Virtual Challenges release their next 3 challenges tomorrow. πŸ₯‡πŸ₯ˆπŸ₯‰ so lots of virtual international πŸšΆπŸ»β€β™€οΈπŸšΆπŸ»β€β™€οΈπŸšΆπŸ»β€β™€οΈπŸšΆπŸ»β€β™€οΈ

4. We’re one day closer to spring πŸŒΈπŸ΅πŸŒΊπŸŒ·πŸŒ»πŸ’

5. There’s less than 225 hours left of 2020 πŸŽ†πŸŽ†πŸŽ†πŸ§§

6. By tomorrow I’ll be 4 months away from my pension πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘΅πŸ»πŸ’·πŸ’·πŸ’· if the bloody government doesn’t renege on me and move the πŸ₯…

And yes, from this post you can deduce that I’m bored 🀣🀣🀣🀣 with absolutely nothing useful or intelligent to write about 🀨🀨🀨 and all I really want to do is 😴😴😴😴 after a torrid πŸŒƒ

Sorry πŸ˜‰

Oh and the weather is cr@p so I can’t even get out for a πŸšΆπŸ»β€β™€οΈπŸ˜’πŸ˜’

P.s. I had to add the gif….🀭🀭 our poor beleaguered πŸ‘ΈπŸ» I bet she wishes she could just say fekit I’m not doing a speech this year….🀫🀫🀫

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Winter solstice could not have come at a better time.

We’re on our way to spring

Whilst the date of winter solstice has been the same for aeons, synonymous with hope and renewal, this year it followed hot on the heels of a date that will hopefully be forgotten in the mists of time, for yesterday we went into Tier 4 lockdown in parts of the UK.

Spring always reminds me of the 1970s Eurovision song; ‘All kinds of everything’ – snowdrops and daffodils, butterflies and bees…all kinds of everything, reminds me of you…

The first to appear are the snowdrops, those pretty little fairy lanterns that lend a cheer to the hard grey ground, and bring a smile to our faces

snowdrops

And then the sun begins to shine again as the daffodils with their bright yellow faces sprout with wild abandon

daffodils

from then on its one after the other as more and more spring flowers appear; bluebells

Bluebells

hyacinths, primroses and then one of my favourite flowers…tulips

a profusion of colours – tulips

But don’t be fooled….for March can bring on a bite of snow

snow in March

But as we roll into April….perhaps a visit to Paris is on the cards πŸ™‚

Bring it on….

Happy Winter Solstice

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