Week 297

31st August, 2014

Farewell to Summer. Holiday makers are leaving Europe’s hotspots and returning to work. For retirees like us, it is time to travel. Hotels seem to welcome us with open arms at much reduced prices. Our first visit to Europe’s hotspots is Chelsea-on-Sea or Wells Next the Sea, Norfolk. We drive there  tomorrow morning. It is only about three hours away so we won’t have to leave too early. We are staying in Little Walsingham.


1st September, 2014


Happy New Month! White rabbit but no goldfish. Hope you enjoy September 2014. You’ll never see it again. We intend to squeeze every last drop of enjoyment from it by keeping busy.

Setting off for Norfolk in a few minutes. Should be there for 2.00 pm. A swim in the pool and then explore the area. We take so many gadgets with us even for a short break – a laptop, two iPads, two smartphones and a Kindle plus, of course, all the chargers. Still, we like to stay connected. My friend, Chris, from Huddersfield sent me an email this morning which I rather enjoyed – enough to share with you:

David Cameron asked the Queen, “Your Majesty, how do you run such an efficient organisation? Are there any tips you can give me?”
  “Well,” said the Queen, “The most important thing is to surround yourself  with intelligent people.” David Cameron then asked, “But how do I know if  the people around me are really intelligent?” The Queen took a sip of tea. “Oh, that’s easy; you just ask them to answer an intelligent riddle, watch me and listen” The Queen pushed a button on her intercom. “Please send Prince Charles in here, would you?”
Prince Charles walked into the room and said, “Yes, Mother? The Queen smiled and said to Charles, “Answer me this please Charles. Your mother and father have a child. It is not your brother and it is not your sister. Who is it?” Without pausing for a moment, Prince Charles answered “That would  be me.” “Yes, very good!” Said the Queen. Ah ha I get it said David, thank you Ma’am. And in a great rush he left.
Cameron went back to Parliament and decided to ask Nick Clegg the same question. “Nick, answer this for me.” “Your mother and your father have a child. It’s not your brother and it’s not your sister. Who is it?” “I’m not sure,” said Clegg. And then in true Nick Clegg style he went on to say. “Let me get back to you on that one.” He went to his advisers and asked everyone, but none could give him an answer.
 Frustrated, Nick went to the men’s lavatory, and found Nigel Farage in there. “Nigel, see if you can answer this question.” “Yes Nick” replied Nigel. “Your mother and father have a child and it’s not your brother or your sister. Who is it?” Farage immediately answered, “That’s easy, it’s me!” Clegg grinned, and said, “Good answer Nigel, I see it all now!”
Clegg then, went back to find Cameron and said to him; “David, I did some research, and I have the answer to that riddle.” “If your mother and father have a child who is not your brother or your sister, the child is Nigel Farage!” Cameron went red in the face, got up, stomped over to Clegg, and yelled into his face, “No! You bloody idiot! It’s Prince Charles!

Make of it what you will as all you poor people trudge out to work this morning.

2nd September, 2014

This our Hotel – Reeds Barn from the front and the back garden from our room:

rb1 rb2

A beautifully still and clear morning in Norfolk. Clear blue sky and strong sunshine in the heart of the countryside. Fresh raspberries for breakfast followed by wonderful bacon and sausages. What an indulgence! We are going out this morning to explore the area. North Creek is the first port of call followed by Burnham Market.

It has been the most wonderful day of delightful, coastal villages and wall to wall sunshine as we drove down narrow, Norfolk lanes to coastal villages of North Creek, Burnham Overy Staithe, Overy Staithe, Wells-Next-the-Sea. and Cromer where we ate Fish & Chips washed down with Norfolk cider and beer.

The Met. Office, so The Daily Telegraph reports, is forecasting a three month heat wave for UK – September – November. Could there be a better time to be living in Surrey and not in Greece?

3rd September, 2014

Got up at 7.00 am to beautiful sun over the pool and fruit garden. Lovely breakfast of  local bacon and pork sausage. Won’t need to eat again today.

Today, we are going to the lavender fields at Heacham


and then the seaside area of Hunstanton.

hunstanton1 hunstanton2

After visiting these interesting places in lovely sunshine, we headed for Burnham Market.


Nowadays it is so popular as a tourist destination that we couldn’t find a single place to park. We carried on back to our hotel and ate a picnic meal in the sunshine in the garden on the camomile lawn. Chicken & ham pie from the farm shop, mixed olives and triple-cream cheese from France washed down by a beautiful bottle of claret.

4th September, 2014

Another lovely, sunny day. We have been so lucky on this trip. Breakfast at 8.00 am, car packed and off. The M25 was wonderful and we were home for 1.00 pm. We returned to multiple telephone calls from sales office reps trying to interest us in their new properties. We may follow some up.

Kids across Britain go back to school today. It is an amazing six years since Pauline & I started a new school year although it still feels so fresh in the memory. We have got through so much in those six years – much of it for the better!

5th September, 2014


Happy Birthday to Phyllis this morning. Only 77 years young.

Surprisingly tired after our four days away. I suppose we did do quite a lot of driving. Anyway, I really stayed in bed too long and didn’t get up until 8.00 am. What followed was a fairly ordinary day of shopping at Sainsbury’s and watching the cricket. I was trying to spot my sister, Ruth, who, apparently, won two tickets to the Headingly match. I didn’t see her but England won a fairly meaningless contest.

6th September, 2014

Very strange day. Pauline went into London with her sister and her niece to have a meal and see a show. They went to see Once at the Phoenix Theatre in Charing Cross Road.


I spent a quiet day redesigning one of my websites.  I will re-launch it some time tomorrow. News came tonight of a poll showing a lead for the Independent Scotland Campaign with just a couple of weeks to go. It is looking more and more likely that Scotland will break away from UK and that UK will break away from Europe. The world is going mad!

Week 296

24th August, 2014

A bit of a shock this afternoon. Our Duplex appeared on RightMove suddenly and, within an hour of spotting it ourselves, a woman was outside viewing it. We had been told that they wouldn’t start marketing until after Bank Holiday Monday. Obviously, they thought better of it.

I’m afraid it was rather an indolent day watching football and a bit of motor racing. I did take part in cooking the meal which was excellent – although I say it myself. We jointly cooked Rabbit Cassoulet. It was an absolutely delicious twist on the classic, French pork & duck cassoulet.


25th August, 2014

A rainy morning, dull and leaden skies – beautiful. I deliberately went out for a walk to feel the rain on my face – delicious! The project today – as it’s raining in Bristol too so the One Day cricket is on hold – is to prepare the pictures for sale.

I’ve reported before that we have over thirty, huge framed nineteenth century pictures from a past home which are too big and dated for a modern house. I’ve found an auction room that I believe will sell them but I have to provide an illustrated catalogue for valuation. Today, we will photograph and list with artists and dates. Tomorrow, we can contact the auctioneers.

26th August, 2014

Pauline’s persistence seems to be paying off. Hours and hours each day trawling through property sites has produced some good finds. This property is one of just four being built by a private builder next to a cricket ground – hence the name of the house. It is in East Sussex with pleasingly short distances from Woking and the Channel Tunnel. The houses aren’t finished inside yet but we have spoken to the agents, done some ‘due diligence’ checks and we hope to go down and look on Thursday.


Heavy rain for the second day although it is mild. We have to go to the Health Club for a workout. I need it. First, we will visit Phyllis & Colin to discuss a buffet we are constructing for tomorrow night with all the family.

27th August, 2014

It would have been Pauline’s Mum’s 100th birthday today. She died aged 96 and we really had thought she would make it all the way.


We all met for a buffet meal this evening. Phyllis & Colin, Mandy & Kieron and the boys, Pauline & I. It was nice to mark the occasion. I took this photo of the three girls:


28th August, 2014

Went to hospital for the first time since April for my blood test. We were up at 6.00 am and out by 6.30 am.. At 7.00 am I was giving an armful of blood and ten minutes later at home drinking my morning’s orange juice. By mid-morning we were driving down towards the outskirts of Royal Tunbridge Wells.

The houses we went to see weren’t really far enough on in their build to make a judgement about them. The area was beautiful – perhaps too beautiful in the sense of being in the heart of countryside with lots of narrow, thickly tree-lined lanes. We haven’t written them off but we will continue to look in the meantime. What we did learn was that we rather liked Tunbridge Wells.


We weren’t disgusted at all. We will look in a radius of that town which has all the facilities we want.

29th August, 2014

I don’t know if I caught this reading Skiathan Man’s Blog but I’m definitely feeling under the weather. I am tired, lethargic, lacking energy. I couldn’t face the Health Club today. We did the Sainsbury’s shop and came home. I’ve been sitting around going ‘Oh! Oh.’ all day. I’m rarely ill but, when I am, everything and everybody suffers with me.

This afternoon we had to go out so that the Estate Agency could show a prospective buyer round. It wasn’t someone who wants to live here but rather a speculator who wants to invest. I can’t see that sort of buyer wanting to pay the price we are on at but you never know. We haven’t found anywhere to move to yet so it is becoming a little more urgent.

30th August, 2014

The new freedom we have found since selling our Greek property has been enormous. It has amazed us both. On Monday, we are driving to Norfolk for a few days to fulfil a long-held wish to re-visit Pauline’s childhood haunts. In October, we are driving up to Yorkshire to visit friends and, in November, we fly to Athens for a break and, later, drive to France for a shopping trip. I am already exploring our plan to rent a property in Italy next Spring en route as we drive to Sifnos for the Summer.


We quite fancy Le Marche – Urbino or Perugia areas. A month there will leave us with a short journey to Ancona for the Superfast connection.

Exhausted after an hour in the gym, I’ve spent the afternoon watching Man. Utd. draw a goalless game against Burnley – AGAINST BURNLEY – England almost certainly losing the One Day series against India and completing the catalogue of the pictures we are going to send to Auction. We are only going to sell 22 framed prints at the moment. They have been great friends for twenty five years but it will be good to start afresh in a new house. This is the catalogue: Framed_Prints

Week 295

17th August, 2014

We have been back in Surrey for four weeks. If we’d stayed to full time, we would have left the island in three more weeks this year. As it is, we are enjoying the cool of a lovely, English Summer and planning our next trips. We intend to go down to the south coast this week and in two weeks, we are off to Norfolk. Poor, old Barty Simpson on Paros is talking of hot and sticky days. I don’t miss those.

At least England won the Test match and, with it the series 3-1. The Indians rather gave up really.

test win

18th August, 2014

Just heard from my little sister, Liz, at 7.00 am. She’s off to Portugal this morning. Liz is Tri-borough Executive Director of Adult Social Care Services for three, leading London councils: Hammersmith & Fulham, Westminster and Kensington and Chelsea. She is pictured here with her grand daughter, Georgia Rose.


Well Autumn temperatures seem to have arrived early. Only 20C/68F is forecast for the week ahead. It feels rather as it used to do when we had left Italy in mid-September, driven through the night and woken up in France. Cool and unusual!

Today, we are contacting the estate agents who came to value our Duplex to tell them which one we have chosen to sell it. A trip to the Health Club to stay alive and then planning a day or two driving to the areas we have chosen to explore for our future property.

The Notary on Sifnos, our friend, Elerania,  contacted us and we had a long chat. It was lovely to hear news of what’s going on but the more one hears, the more one despairs of the country ever throwing off its Third World mantle. At least we sold to the right people!

19th August, 2014

You will notice a change. I thought I couldn’t continue with a Header that was a view from someone else’s house. It does not signal any less commitment to Greece or Sifnos but acknowledges a change of location. The Sifnos book has been proof-read and despatched. We await its return.

I must report the winning joke from the Edinburgh Fringe by Tim Vine was:

I decided to sell my Hoover… well it was just collecting dust.

Four years ago he won with:

I’ve just been on a once-in-a-lifetime holiday. I’ll tell you what, never again.

although I rather liked:

I picked up a hitch hiker. You’ve got to when you hit them.

We are still struggling to choose which Estate Agent to ask to sell our Duplex. Two out of the three were asking 1% and the third was 1.5%. This morning, one phoned to say they were having a new promotion and would do it for 0% just to get our business. It doesn’t necessarily persuade us but it makes the decision more complicated. We are going to discuss it with Phyllis this morning.

This afternoon, on impulse, we drove down to Hampshire to look at a property which was just being built. Although the illustration on the web looked fine and the actual structure was acceptable, it was too near the road with all the attendant noise to make it worth following up.

20th August, 2014

Quite a cool start to the morning although it was bright and sunny and reached 22C/70F by early afternoon. Having finally made a decision, I contacted the two Estate Agencies we were rejecting and Pauline phoned the one we had chosen. They are coming to take photographs tomorrow afternoon.

We were supposed to be going to pick Victoria plums on a Surrey farm but, after an hour in the gym, we decided to pick them from a shelf in Waitrose instead. It was far less time consuming.

We are entering the last third of August and the summer is running out. Barty on Paros is already talking about boats to Piraeus being booked up as Greeks go home in their droves. It is amazing how short the ‘season’ is in Greece.

21st August, 2014

A cold night. Got down to 7C/45F (in mid-August!). Had to sleep under a sheet for the first time. Currently, at 11.00 am, it’s only 18C/65F but lovely and sunny. The gardeners are outside mowing the lawns and tidying the flower beds. The smell of new-mown grass is heady in the sunshine. A quintessential English Summer’s day.

Photo shoot by the Estate Agency this afternoon. Pauline and I have a process we go through when selling a property – and this is the fifth one. We try to de-personalise it, removing as much clutter as possible. I then take photos to see what stands out as good or bad so that, when the professional turns up, as many problems have been eliminated as possible. This is one of the bedrooms after de-cluttering:

bedroom1 bedroom2

22nd August, 2014

She has been dead for six years now but Mum would be 91 today. I’m sorry she hasn’t made it. She wouldn’t thank me for sharing this and I’m amazed how young she actually is but this photo was taken in 1981 when she was only 58 – five years younger than I am now – in her retirement bungalow that she and Gordon bought on Bretby Lane.


Happy Birthday, Mum.

Another chilly night has given way to a sunny day of 22C/70F. The phone doesn’t stop ringing. Pauline has emailed so many Property Developments that Sales Office staff keep bombarding her with invitations to view. Actually, we are going to look at one in Surrey on Sunday.

It feels like we are constantly on the move at the moment. We will be driving down to Sussex next week to view some more Developments. The week after, we are going to Norfolk for a few days. We are going to Yorkshire in mid-October and I am currently planning a trip to Athens in November plus a trip to France in November. Should keep us on our toes.

23rd August, 2014

A morning of on-line Property Searching, talking to Sales Staff over the phone, planning trips next week. One of our problems is that so many houses we like – and we want a brand new one – are still at the drawings stage and won’t be built until Spring 2015.

Went to the Health Club for an hour. We expected Saturday morning to be busy. It was quite the reverse. Something about an hour’s exercise makes one feel deserving of a rest. When we got home, I watched the football & Cricket and Pauline did the hoovering – well, she gets bored easily.

I looked for flights to Athens Eleftherios Venizelos airport in early November. I was very pleased to find that British Airways was as cheap as easyJet who also charge for Baggage. Two return flights cost us £313.96/392.87€ all in. You can’t say fairer than that.

Week 294

10th August, 2014

We were told to expect the tail end of Hurricane Bertha to hit us during the night. It didn’t. No wind at all. We woke to a pleasant morning but, by 9.00 am rain started to fall and became quite torrential for about an hour and a half. Gutterings were overflowing but the trees and plants seemed to breathe a big sigh of relief. The Surrey Cycle Race chose exactly the wrong day and wrong start time but who likes cyclists anyway. Let them swim!

Talking of swimming, I dug out some photos of our first trip to Greece – Zakynthos as I wrote yesterday. It was August 1981. We had been married for three years and had just recovered from a very serious car smash. It was our first holiday together and our first time flying. I was 30 years old and Pauline 29. You will notice that we haven’t changed one bit.

zak1 zak2

11th August, 2014

Lovely sunny morning but much cooler today – only 21C/69F. We spent our last weeks giving things away on Sifnos. Now, we are doing the same thing here. We are off to the Woking Hospice with lots of unwanted bric-a-brac and clothing. On Sifnos, we gave away carloads of things we didn’t need and took more than thirty bags of ‘rubbish’ to the bins. By the time we’d finished, the house almost floated it was that empty.

12th August, 2014

Bright, sunny, brisk morning – 20C/68F. We didn’t go to the Health Club so we have to a double session today. Tomorrow the first lot of estate agents come to our apartment to do a valuation and then others on Thursday. Lovely contacts with the island over the past couple of days keep us up to date. My work on the Sifnos book is progressing well.

In three weeks we are off to Wells-next-the-Sea on the Norfolk coast – a place that has resonance with Pauline’s family. She’s talked about it throughout our married life so, at last, I’ll get to see it.


13th August, 2014

Bright and sunny but cool morning. The apartment is prepared for its first valuation this afternoon. We had one done last November but estate agents tell us prices here have moved up markedly in the past ten months so we are having three, new ones done.

Pauline is fielding replies from her enquiries on new properties to buy. It still seems quite a hard sell is used by these agents. Fortunately, we are experienced enough to play them at their own game. We may go to pick plums at Garsons’ Farm next week after our valuations have been played out. Apparently, the Jubileum plums are ready. They are like Victoria plums but bigger and you can’t beat bigger plums!


14th August, 2014

Well, we thought house prices had gone up in since we went away but we were shocked to find our Duplex had put on £50,000 in nine months. However, we are struggling to find a property we really like. Stretching our budget to £550,000 has brought more in to view. We saw this, so far unbuilt, property in Kent. It is a one-off in a Kent village. It looks interesting although broadband speeds are poor there at the moment. The website says ‘superfast broadband’ is arriving in September 2014 but that must be a concern. Still, we’ll probably go and have a look.


Two more valuations today and then we’ll decide whether to proceed or not. Exciting times!

Well, the outcome has been astonishing. Of three valuations, there is a variance of £125,000. The lowest estimate was beaten by £75,000 in the second and by £125,000 in the third. As the third has just sold an adjacent property, we are pleased to go with that. We were told that it should go within six weeks so we’ve got to get a move on and find our ideal property in our ideal area but where that is, we haven’t a clue. We are going to explore some areas next week. The fifth Test starts tomorrow so I will be ‘busy’.

15th August, 2014

Went shopping at Sainsburys Knaphill which is about five miles away. It is huge and well stocked and points up why Tesco is suffering at the moment.


We took our current prescriptions with us because there is a pharmacy within the supermarket. I was shocked to see the notice on the counter announcing that prescription charges have gone up to £8.05/10.04€ per item. I have a list of 9 items and Pauline has one more so our bill would have come to £80.50/100.40€ – an enormous bill. Fortunately, it costs us nothing because we are over 60. In fact it has cost me nothing for nearly ten years because of my Type 2 Diabetes diagnosis but the cost otherwise would be huge. At least we can easily get the drugs. In Greece it would be far less certain.

The cricket’s going well. At the time of writing – 3.35 pm – the Indians are 83 for 8. They don’t like it up ’em! …… The day finished India 148 all out and England 62-0. England will now definitely win the series.

16th August, 2014

A quiet day working on projects in hand. I had correspondence to write for the Management Group of our Development and progressed the book I am putting together.

Unfortunately, I was being constantly side tracked by the Test Match which was certainly going well and three football matches which weren’t – if you’re a United supporter. Roasted tarragon chicken with a medley of roasted vegetables for our meal. Overall, it was a lovely day.

Week 293

3rd August, 2014

The day began overcast but humid and has developed in to a wonderfully sunny summer’s day with bright light and a gentle breeze. Sunday (digital) newspapers this morning and some business to finish in a communication with our Management Company.

I have a

  • Desktop computer (1 year old) with Colour Laser printer and Mono Laser printer
  • Toshiba Laptop (3 years old)
  • iPad Wi-Fi  (2 years old)

Pauline has a

  • Toshiba Laptop ( 1 year old)
  • Amazon Kindle (3 years old)
  • Amazon Kindle (1 year old)

We have been discussing updating for a little while and, today, I ordered a new iPad Air Wi-Fi + Cellular from the Apple Store.


I also ordered a new leather case for my old iPad which is going to Pauline and a case for my new one. We are going to need a new laptop sometime this year as well but, first, our mobile contracts will be up in September and EE will be offering us new smartphones to tempt us to stay with them. They are offering a new shared 4G Data plan with unlimited calls and texts which will do nicely for two smartphones and two iPads. We couldn’t do that on Sifnos although I do rather envy Bart Simpson on Paros who has been gorging on fresh figs picked in his garden. We completed our sale just a few weeks too soon.

Interestingly, Bart muses on the origin of the saying:  ‘I couldn’t give a fig!’ It goes all the way back to Middle English when a fig was considered a free fruit of no worth so it meant to care almost nothing. You wouldn’t say that if you saw individual figs wrapped in tissue paper to protect them being sold in Waitrose at 50p/60c each.

The day was completed with a lovely call from my friend, Brian, who I haven’t seen since last October. He is on a three month tour of England’s coastline and was phoning me from Bude in Cornwall. We have agreed to meet for lunch in October when we drive up to Yorkshire.

4th August, 2014

Blue skies, bright sunshine, clear diary – what more could one want. Actually, Pauline is contacting Estate Agents for three valuations of our property and I am planning out the sections of my Sifnos Book. We will, of course, have an hour or so at the Health Club and we have been asked to cat-sit for our neighbour, Rosina, who is going away for ten days. Minnie (who is so big she should be renamed Maxi) is a lovely, friendly cat who will be fun to look after.


5th August, 2014

I was so preoccupied today that I am having to write my Blog in retrospect. Couldn’t go out because we were expecting deliveries. Pauline continued to contact builders/developers in the Kent/Sussex/Berkshire areas and prepared to grill them on things like:

  • Are you in a Flood Zone?
  • Where’s the nearest Health Club?
  • Can we have underfloor heating?
  • Can we re-specify the kitchen?

Meanwhile, I was collating material for the Sifnos book and preparing the sections. When the new iPad arrived at around mid day, I was consumed with setting it up and altering the old one for Pauline. This took me the rest of the day and I still wasn’t finished by bedtime. Altering email settings gave me a headache for a while. I do everything in the Cloud and Pauline doesn’t yet. We use on-line calendars which we both want to edit, read and share. This is still giving me a bit of a headache. Lots of apps specific to my interests had to be reinstalled on my new iPad and taken off Pauline’s.

The second delivery – the leather covers – didn’t arrive until 3.00 pm by which time it was too late to go out. We cooked our meal – wonderful, farmshop lamb steaks with broadbeans, onions and tomatoes. It was delightful.


6th August, 2014

Woken by torrential rain in the night but, by morning, the skies had cleared and the sun was out. In our Greek home, we had become accustomed to cooking outside and our main method was griddling meat and vegetables. It’s not so easy to do in a smaller, apartment kitchen so we will look to install in any new house kitchen a built in griddle plate and heavy duty extractor fan. For a temporary measure, I’ve just ordered a large, cast iron griddle plate to put over our hob.


The temperature here reached 25C/77F with considerable humidity. Work in the gym was decidedly sweaty. It’s amazing how physical effort is affected by one’s mental state. Today, I did 45 mins exercise on a couple of pieces of equipment. All the pieces of equipment have mini TVs integrated into one’s personal exercise data. Today, Sky Sports were showing the Ashes victory which was dominated by Freddie Flintoff. I was so engrossed in the games that I didn’t see the time flowing away. That’s definitely the way to do it.

7th August, 2014

Went to Sainsbury’s today to do the shopping. Not only is it much better than Tesco – so much more choice – but makes shopping on Sifnos look like visiting a third world country. The temperature here was a sunny and comfortable 24C/75F.

sainsburys sainsburys2

The choice is unbelievable so much so that we over bought. As we drove home, I began to think that we would never eat all that fresh produce before it went over but this is what the fantastic choice of a British supermarket engenders – almost unlimited choice.

An hour at the Health Club was enjoyable this afternoon and then Pauline cooked Salmon fillet in tarragon sauce with asparagus and griddled oyster mushrooms. Absolutely delightful!

8th August, 2014

A steamy day – only 24C/75F but humid and we had five minutes of heavy rain before the skies cleared again. Pauline has spent the morning arranging valuation meetings for our Duplex. She has chosen three companies – Townends, who will come next Wednesday and Curchods and Aston Meads on Thursday. We may invite Gascoigne-Pees on Friday. We are in the lovely position of not being in a hurry to move. We will go for the top-end valuation and then wait for the required offer. Not only have we not found another property to go to but haven’t even confidently identified the area along the southern coast that we want to move to.

Fortunately, the weather is dry at Old Trafford at the moment so I am watching the cricket. England are currently hauling the Indian total back and will soon overtake it.

Unfortunately, we had just returned from a couple of hours at the Health Club when the cricket was rained off for the day. England were going well but you can never trust the weather ‘up North’. Pauline cooked a wonderful meal of griddled vegetables – peppers, onions, mushrooms and asparagus to accompany griddled sea bream.


No wonder we rarely go out to eat. She is such a brilliant cook! As we finished our meal, the heavens opened here. Everywhere outside soon smelled so clean and fresh.

9th August, 2014

Gloriously hot and sunny day here undisturbed by weird tourists. A light breeze helped but it still felt rather humid. A day at home watching the cricket and what a result! I could hear Ruth applauding all the way up in Bolton. The nonsense that commentators talked about Cook before the game was completely dispelled and England won an easy victory. The Indians just aren’t very good in UK conditions.


Pauline reminded me that it was 33 years ago this coming week that we first went to Greece. We spent three weeks on Zakynthos (Zante) island. There was no airport on the island in those days. We flew cheap charter in the middle of the night to Athens and then went by minibus across the Peloponnese – through the now very familiar Patras – to the port of Kyllini where we got a ferry to the island. By the time we got there, we were so exhausted that we wanted to go home. Three weeks later, we didn’t want to leave and were firmly hooked on Greece. The rest is history.