Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Luddites Rule!

We popped down to Stone yesterday as Elaine needed some new boots.  There are only two shoe shops in Stone, one is closing shortly so was having a sale.  Elaine found a nice pair of boots straight away, although they weren't quite the colour she wanted.  So, she decided to check out the other shoe shop before buying them ... the other shoe shop didn't have anything she fancied so it was back to shop one, only to watch someone else buying her shoes....bugger!  They were the last ones!

Onto the charity shops we went ... there isn't a shortage of them in Stone!  I still find it sad that so many shops are shutting and being replaced by a plethora of charity shops.   I wonder if it is the economic climate or the ease of which you can online shop.  When we want to buy something generally the first thing we do is Google it to check out the product etc. but trying to buy the product in a shop is generally very difficult, as all that comes up on Google is to buy online!  It makes it easy, but the high street shops are suffering.  It also affects employment as the paid shop assistant is replaced with the charity shop volunteer.

Back to the shoe hunt.  We were just about to give up when we entered the last charity shop .... result! One pair of ankle boots, one pair of long boots plus a bonus Xmas jumper....£16.00...less than half the cost of the original pair of boots!

Wow!  We had saved some money, so what to do with the saved money?  Lets go to the pub with Ray and Diane ... so we did and it was grand!  It was strange sitting in a pub in daylight hours watching the kids going home from school, even stranger was a lady giving massages and various 'witchcraft' treatments in a roped off part of the pub!  Great idea I reckon, the Mrs goes for a massage, whilst the old man has a beer or two! (El here ... she was a Natural Therapist - like myself - so we had a lot in common to talk about and have booked myself an appt at her private clinic on Friday!  Didn't seem quite 'right' to me to have a treatment in the pub but it was a good marketing strategy!)

We also learnt something new from Diane in that you can record a TV programme onto a memory USB stick if your TV has the correct USB orifice.....more later! 

It was a special drink as Ray is off downunder for a while from tomorrow.  Bon Voyage, Ray ... and don't forget the Tim Tams (Deluxe Penguin bar)  ...
El Ray and Diane in The Exchange

It was a very cold night last night, with lots of frost around when I went on my midnight marina walk, but in the night it blew a gale and pissed down with rain.

This morning the weather was still appalling but we needed to get some odds and sods from Stafford for the van and the boat.  I am so glad we have a car, I wouldn't want to hang around bus stops in this crappy weather!

We managed to virtually find everything we wanted so decided to treat ourselves to a lovely lunch at Frankie and Bennys!  Whilst in the restaurant we wrote up a pros and cons list on a scrap of paper for living in Spain vs Australia ... at the moment Oz is in front!  We once planned a round the world itinerary on a beer mat in a pub in Byron Bay ... no joke!  We stuck to it too ... I still have that beermat somewhere!  England is definitely out of the running for a place to settle down in ... as much as we love the place the winter just sucks.  I think once you have lived for a long time in a warm climate it is very difficult to try and live in a cold climate.  When we lived in Oz we really thought that we would be able to handle the English winter......we have failed!

England in the winter !
Byron Bay in the winter !

Finally to the Luddite bit.  We don't have a USB socket on the boat TV, but we discovered that the van TV had one, so we fitted the stick and hey presto it records!!!  Oh so simple, no more missed Dr Who!
Why didn't I know this?  We have only ever recorded programmes on video tapes, so I guess we are a little behind the times !

Tonight as I type this drivel the boat is rocking in the wind.  It generally doesn't move as we are well sheltered in the marina - it must be a real bugger in the open.  Meanwhile Elaine is sitting in one of the comfy chairs in front of the fire, making jewellery and worrying about our resident sheep in the marina being cold and wet!


  1. Paul,
    Are you going to inform us of the pro and cons for Spain vs Oz?

    1. Good point, that can be todays blog subject