One of my photos

September 2023

October 1st, 2023 · Posted by Skuds in Life · No Comments · Life

September was a month packed with events and excitement, or at least what passes for excitement at my age.

The month started on a high, because on the 1st I had tickets to see the magician Pete Firmin at the Hawth theatre. I’m always impressed by magicians, especially when they are doing lots of close-up stuff with cards. The next day we went up to Essex for Auntie Joan’s annual garden party, so another chance to see all the family.

I had another trip up to Glasgow for work, which was more eventful than it needed to be, thanks to a combination of easyJet and NATS air traffic controllers, but less disastrous than the previous trip. A few days after that I was back at Gatwick for the main event of the month; our holiday to Greece.

This was the first proper overseas holiday for us since 2019. Since then we have had a few days in North Wales and a few days on a narrowboat in East Anglia. We did go to Turkey last year, but only for a city break in Istanbul. This holiday was just for total relaxation for both of us, so no excursions, and no hiring of cars, bikes or scooters; just lounging by the pool and indulging in cocktails in the evening.

Of course, we all have different ways of relaxing, and for me this involved getting up before dawn and walking down to the local village so I could fly my drone at sunrise. I also made a few small hikes uphill in the afternoons to get a different perspective and also made some flights from the hotel’s tennis courts.

Unfortunately the video footage was a bit dodgy. I think I had set the exposure too slow which made things jumpy. But the still photos came out OK.

The village of Pefkohori at sunrise
Our hotel up in the hills

Nothing much to say about it all, except that it was very hot by our standards, and we had a great time. We were also very impressed by Thessaloniki airport. By far the best airport we have used in Greece. The whole point was to unwind so that is what we did. I also drank a lot, by my standards. Certainly I drank more in this week than in the rest of 2023 put together – though that is not hard because I think I had only had 4 fruit ciders and a couple of large pina coladas in the previous 8 months.

We got into the routine of walking down to the village to a bar next to the beach for our drinks, and then getting a taxi back up the hill. The distance was not great, less than a kilometre, but it was a very steep hill which Jayne refused to walk up.

One drone flight was a bit unusual. I had gone up the hill to fly from a bit of waste ground next to the road when I heard some clanging, which kept getting louder. The clanging was coming from chimes round the necks of eight goats, which appeared from a path, escorted by a dog. No people at all. I was very impressed by this working dog keeping an eye on his flock. The dog was less impressed with me being there as a potential threat and was giving me the evil eye, so I was very careful to give them all a wide berth and vacate the area.

The other big event was, naturally, my birthday. There was a lot less fuss than last year, but then it was a big milestone last year and I think Jayne wanted to celebrate the fact that I actually reached 60, after all that unpleasantness a few years ago when it looked possible I wouldn’t even reach 58. This time round it was quieter, but just as enjoyable and a lot less stressful.

One very notable thing to happen in the month was that I actually drove our car for more than a mile for the first time in the year. We were coming back from a visit to Essex and I offered to drive to give Jayne a break. I’ll be honest, I was a bit anxious, having not driven for so long, but it did come back to me fairly quickly and I soon got used to operating the clutch with my foot rather than my left hand.

I did a lot more miles on the bike though, covering over 250 miles in the month. There were a few local trips to record fairs, some shopping trips to Brighton and a visit to Reading for work. I will have to be careful with going to Brighton though. So many record shops! I came back from the first trip with a dozen LPs and a couple more on the second trip. What with that and the record fairs I ended up getting 20 second-hand LPs in the month and another new one as a birthday present. So much for my intention to have a small but carefully-curated vinyl collection!

My year’s mission to engage with and consume more culture has had mixed results. The reading continues to go well, with 9 books read during the month. With 95 books read in total it looks like I will have no trouble reaching my target of reading 100 books in the year.

I had less success with watching films and TV shows. In fact I didn’t watch any films at all and apart from routine things like Pointless, the only TV I watched was Wilderness on Amazon Prime and re-watching seasons 3 and 4 of the IT Crowd (plus the final special)

Finally, my run of good luck with the Premium Bonds continued, with a prize for the third month in a row. £150 this time.

Tags: ···

No Comments so far ↓

Like the collective mind of the Daily Mail, comments are closed.