Summer 2017: England Part 1
After leaving Iceland very early in the morning, we all did this…
…then we finally arrived in Bristol. We picked up a hire car and headed North, stopping for dinner with family in Worcester.
We finally arrived at my parents’ place in Billingham around 9pm. We got settled and tried to put the kids to bed. That worked successfully for everyone but Olive, whose body clock was out of sync. So Olive stayed up with me and created this masterpiece at around 1am:
The next day, our first port of call was a visit with Heather’s Grandie. Grandie is the grand age of 96 and is now quite frail. We’ve talked on Skype since being in America, but we hadn’t seen him in person for 3 years, so we were keen to stop by.
Grandie was having a good day and made his way into the back garden to play with the kids.
A few of us, including Josh’s cousin Luca, went to a field over the road to play football and rugby.
That evening, we had dinner at my brother Paul’s house. It was lovely to see Paul, Jemma and the kids. We caught up, ate, played in their treehouse, on the trampoline and Paul and I took on the kids at football, teaching them a sound lesson in fancy footwork and dramatic headers.
The next day, we went to the beach at South Shields with cousins, uncles and grandparents from my side of the family for reunions, rounders, kite flying and paddling.
It was so nice to see the kids being reunited with their cousins
The next day was a trip Whitby, a beautiful fishing town in North Yorkshire. There’s a lot of history in Whitby, of both personal and more general significance.
It was at Whitby Abbey, that in. 664AD, King Oswiu of Northumbria determined how the date of Easter would be calculated (thanks Wikipedia).
This beach in Whitby is where my Dad’s family used to come for their summer holidays when he was young.
It was also on Whitby pier where I proposed to Heather, in the pouring rain (just like on a movie).
Another day, the kids went climbing with their cousins at GO CLIMB climbing walls at the Billingham Forum. They had lots of fun on the themed walls, free jumps and slide…
Having worked up an appetite, there was only one way to satisfy it in true North East style…
With stomachs full of pastry, we made our way back to the Forum for an afternoon of ice skating.
That evening, Heather her and I left the kids with Poppy and Grandma and headed out for a night on the ‘Toon’ (Newcastle).
We had a nice meal at The Botanist and a walk along the Quayside. It was lovely to be back, to be around family and places with lots of fond memories.
The following morning, we loaded back up into the car and headed South for Pembrokeshire, Wales…