Tuesday, 17 January 2017

A City Break

We treated ourselves this past weekend with a few days in London.

We took a bus to Marlow railway station and two trains (change at Maidenhead) to Paddington Station.  From there as we had small suitcases to carry we went by taxi through the city traffic which took nearly an hour to the Premier Inn at Tower Bridge ... at a cost of over £31!!! We decided then that we'd get Oyster Cards! When we returned to Paddington yesterday on the underground it cost us £4.80 and took just 15 minutes!

Taken on my phone from the taxi as we approached and crossed Tower Bridge ...
The hotel was just a few minutes further and we were soon in our room which was bigger that we thought it would be and had everything we'd asked for, the most important of which was a bath which we made very good use of!
 ... and had a good view of the city skyline.

Clothes and paraphernalia unpacked we soon set out on our first outing.  It's a 15 minute walk to the nearest tube (London Bridge) where we purchased the Oyster Cards and used the tube for the first time in many, many years (why pay when you have free bus travel?) so that we could get where we want to be so much quicker.

 St Martin in the Fields for candlelight Bach concert by the
... but first we needed nourishment and chose to eat in St Martin's Crypt where we didn't enjoy the worst fish and chips we'd ever tasted!  It's an atmospheric place and holds jazz evening on certain Wednesday throughout the month, something I would like to attend one day.

We had a little time to spare so had a walk round the gallery before making our way upstairs

We always try to visit here when in London it's such a welcoming place.  Some lunchtimes there are free concerts when you can come and go as you please to listen to some wonderful music at no cost (or a donation) or even pop in on a cold day for a warm and a sit down.
 We really enjoyed the music, lots of bass and lively too, the musicians enjoyed it as much as we did.

St Martins and Trafalgar Square as we set off back to the underground
 London Bridge underground station is alongside the Shard and is at it's most impressive in the dark!  

Yesterday (Monday) morning when we were leaving there was a really long queue of people waiting to ride up to the viewing platform which was at that time in the clouds so not good value for money at that time!

Thursday, 12 January 2017

A short walk

Apologies for the lack of post we're both laid up with colds (George of course has man-flu, but I'm ok!)

Yesterday the sun was shining and I felt in need of some fresh air so I wrapped up warm and took a short walk around the marina and lock ...

 Two more different birds to the feeders today
Looking downstream towards Marlow
Some interesting snippets from the information board that I wasn't aware of ....
  • ~ there has been a mill here since at least 1086 until the current                       building ceased work in 1952.
  • ~ the first Oxford/Cambridge boat race took place between Hambleden Lock and Henley Bridge in 1829 but moved to London soon after.
  • ~ Henley Regatta was established in 1839 to bring trade to the area.

 Looking upriver towards Henley on Thames

And there he was ... gone!

Back to Still Rockin's warm fire and a hot drink ... bliss!

Friday, 6 January 2017

Would you believe it?

We were late getting up yesterday morning, at 8:45 it was still minus 7.6 degrees!

..... and yet ......

 Just after 1-pm we were stitting on the back deck with all the panels open with a cup of tea!
 ... and it was 24, that's 24 degrees!
 ... no, wait, that's 26 degrees
 Wow, a summertime temperature of 27 degrees!!!

The metal of the boat was quite hot to touch...
 ... the sky was perfect
... and the swans came acalling!

Then the Tesco man turned up and it was busy busy busy again.

A fantastic interlude!

Wednesday, 4 January 2017

Nuts about nuts ... and kingfishers

... and fun on the feeders
... has become a regular
... visitor to the peanuts
And I love to watch the squirrels
... hanging by their tails to feed.

The nut feeder usually last 4/5 days but the seed feeder is a different kettle of fish and is usually empty in just a few hours! Most of the birds and squirrels eat nicely but there is at least one Chaffinch who just throws the seed everywhere and is very rarely seen eating them directly from the feeder, but having read the RSPB information in the link above I realise that they are actually ground feeders.

And at last ...

I got the Kingfisher, isn't he lovely!

Sorry about the quality of these pictures, they were taken through the boat double glazed boat window and the perspex winter cover  since by the time I get the camera, open the door and step outside onto the deck the action has gone!