So what do we do the rest of the year?

Well, we do go into the lockdown I expected. From the 5th of November till the 2nd of December. So I have to celebrate my 65th birthday completely different from what I was hoping to do.

Signs of a Birthday

Signs of a Birthday

My plans were to go to Cornwall for a weekend, and have a meal at Nathan Outlaw’s seafood restaurant. But instead it is a (delicious) luxurious take-away lunch from The Tearoom at Scarisbrick Marina, at the picnic table nearest our jetty.

Birthday Party (not Christmas Meal...)

Birthday Party (not Christmas Meal…)

Note the only tablecloth we have (among two couples): my mum’s old Christmas one…

Birthday Party in full swing

Birthday Party in full swing

And although it is cold, and it looks like it’s going to rain, as soon as we start the party the sun comes out.

Other than that it is a matter of making use of all the time in the best way.
Mark, a guy that lives and works in the marina, asked me to cross stitch a waterways map, for his new boat.
That’s what I do, and because I like the pattern, I do one for me as well.

Waterways Map x 2

Waterways Map x 2

In fact, I get hooked to cross stitching again (thanks, Marc) and decide to do a Christmas pattern I’ve done before but which I gave away to the Cross Stitch Museum in Holland. It’s one of the things I kind of miss, but I still have the original pattern.

Sintirklass

Sintirklass

The pattern costs $10 on the internet, at the moment. I paid $3.50. I could have been rich (if I had bought 1 million of them…).

Whatever lockdown or Tier we’re in, me and Ann can still go for a walk.
Which we do 2 or 3 times a week. To the farm shop, or from Tesco back to the marina, or explore some of the public footpaths around here (impossible at the moment because of all the rain we had).

And I start litter picking in and around the marina again. Usually I find snack wrappings, the odd face mask and tissues.
Last Sunday, though, I found something completely different: half an Audi.

Half an Audi

Half an Audi

Head lights, part of the grill, the number plate. He must have done light speed, considering the damage to armco barrier, the rubbish on the bridge and the damage he did to a stone wall on the other side of the road.
He did wake up half the marina, including me, at 3:57am.

And I go back to my MOOC’s.
“MOOC?”, you say?
Well, a MOOC is a Massive Open Online course. There are thousands on the web.
At the moment I’m on my 55th course.

What kind of courses? From archaeology, via happiness and well-being, mediaeval manuscripts, science of cooking, to weather forecasting, and 3 courses about Star Trek.
Some of the courses are interesting but easy. Other ones are a lot more difficult, and I find myself with pen and paper to write down complex chemical formulas at 5:30am!

And of course we do have the most gorgeous skies again…

What a sky (again)

What a sky (again)

Besides all this, it’s also the time to plan for Christmas. Lights and decorations are already out for a while, and Christmas meals have been planned. Ann would do two meals and I would do two meals.
On the 19th of December we had to change that to one meal, half done by Ann and half by me.
I wouldn’t surprise me if, on Christmas Day, some people will go from one boat to the other, to deliver full plates. Due to the fact that all getting together will be banned…
We just have to wait and see.

But whatever happens, it will be Christmas in about five days. So I’ll finish this (probably) last blog of the year with our digital Christmas card.

See you all in 2021!

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