Wednesday, 20 February 2019

Back In The Old Routine

It's only two weeks since we flew back from Bequia but it seems like a lifetime away now. That's not to say that the benefits of the holiday have worn off - I think we're both as relaxed as we've ever been.

So it's been back to the old retirement routine of cramming as much as possible into every day while we still can.

We were delighted to see that Ipswich's Christchurch Mansion is holding an exhibition "Kiss And Tell" centred around Rodin's masterpiece - The Kiss. After six years in Suffolk it was our first visit to this museum and we were extremely impressed by both the mansion and "Kiss And Tell." It's running until 29th April. Catch it if you can.  

We followed the exhibition with a film at Empire Cinema. Green Book is a very good movie based upon a true story about a New York Italian night club bouncer hired by a black American virtuoso pianist as chauffeur for his trip to the deep south of America. It is a road movie with a brilliant performance by Mahershali Ali as Dr Don Shirley. It's been criticised in some quarters as racist but I found its story of a vile racist going on a journey to redemption quite uplifting even if the truth was embellished to create a moving and entertaining film.

Last week was time for our second trip of 2019 to London and the National Theatre.

It was a glorious day and we enjoyed our walk from Liverpool St through The City and the South Bank.

The play was When We Have Sufficiently Tortured Each Other starring Cate Blanchett. Tickets are like gold dust and we were lucky to come up trumps in the National Members' ballot. The play itself has been badly received by the critics The Times review opened with the following (not for the faint hearted) words "Cate Blanchett live on stage, wearing black stockings and a strap-on dildo, giving her husband one up the bum... and it’s still really tedious. That’s how bad this new Martin Crimp play is." 

I have absolutely no idea at all what was going on but have to say that I found the whole avant garde production mesmerising.

We walked back along the same route and treated ourselves to a peak hour train journey to get home early for a Valentines' meal. The train was delayed and we were home no earlier than we would have been on a cheap off peak ticket. 

Framlingham is looking good in the late winter sunshine and on Saturday we enjoyed a good lunch at The Crown with great company.

I was pleased to see a few of these in town.I've got one but, as we're set back off the road there's little point in putting it up (who are you calling a coward?).

On Sunday we had a fabulous circular walk from Walberswick to Southwold and back. I loved this newly re-thatched house in Walberswick. It's been beautifully done.  

I've been back on eBay looking for hidden treasures. I found this very finely hand painted Georgian coffee cup for a few pounds. It won't make my fortune but it's a nice find. 

In other news. We've just taken the car to Bury St Edmunds to have the alloy wheels refurbished before return to Mercedes when the payment plan expires next month. We were as careful as possible but it's virtually impossible nowadays with the state of our roads and the volume of traffic to drive for three years without kerbing the wheels. There was only minor damage to each but without the repairs we could be in for quite hefty penalties.

It's been a fabulous car and we would have ordered another but they don't make this model any more. So we've ordered something else. It should be with us in April.

Wednesday, 6 February 2019

Another Postcard From Bequia

We always said that life is too short and there are too many places to visit in the world to go on holiday to the same place twice but in January 2017 we discovered the Caribbean island of Bequia and our philosophy changed. In January 2018 we went back and in January 2019 here we were again at the brilliant Tropical Hideaway. 

I'm not going to write much about what was the most wonderful holiday - I'll let the photos speak for themselves.

If I got a bit carried away using the new iPhone camera (the place is so photogenic), forgive me and just scroll through or hit the back button when you get bored.

A stay at Gatwick Sofitel is the very best start to a holiday.
Tropical Hideaway - as beautiful as ever
Breakfast on the balcony

Princes Margaret Beach on a normal day

We loved our regular walks through the forest

Bequia landscape

Evening terrace view

The beautiful Plantation Hotel

Typical Bequia gradients certainly keep you fit

Our little cottage.

The wonderful Fay's shop and beach bar

Worth the climb for views like these

Tropical Hideaway's home cooked pizza

A local resident

More climbs
Friendship Bay

Bequia Music Festival


Lunch at Firefly Plantation

Princess Margaret beach on a (thankfully rare) cruise day

The culprit
Dive Bequia

Walkway View

Firefly View

Managing to catch up with Liverpool

Bequia Walkway

The fabulous infinity pool

Selfie at Hibiscus Cottage

Standing on the dock of the bay

Tropical Hideaway Terrace

At the end of a six mile hike (with six to go back), the views at Bullet Point were worth it.

Hibiscus Cottage

Another climb to Peggy's Mount rewarded us with spectacular views.

Plantation Hotel Beach

Marion's James Bond moment

Friendly local.

Princess Margaret Again

The lovely Fay (top) invited us to her birthday barbeque

Caribbean pilosophy

If there's no snow, you can improvise

It did rain once or twice (for an hour)

Jack's Bar jetty

Double rainbow

A lovely meal at Pirate View

Caribbean lobster dinner 

Great name for a boat

Lunch at Jack's

Bequia Beach Hotel

Local flora

Friends Mark and Nita sailed into nearby St Vincent so we caught a ferry to visit them (this is not the ferry)

This is.
With friends Mark and Nita in St Vincent

Selfie time

If you're going to St Vincent. Be sure to wear a flower in your hair.

Where's Mark and Nita? (clue - above the right hand lifeboat)

Tropical Hideaway residents

Sign him up Jurgen

Getting a taste for Rum Punch

Just chilling

An island of flowers

Now that's what you call a boat

Marion, Marion and Marion

I was there too

Heading home
Flying in style from Bequia
Finishing where we started with a glass of fizz