Thursday, 28 February 2013

Busy bunny this week...

New solar panels fitted at last.
We had a great trip home from the UK, everything went as smooth as silk.  Dropped some bit's and pieces off at Mark & Mo's on the way to Manchester, but they were still in bed, lazy buggers!  Good flight and every thing on schedule.  Heaving with rain in Athens and because of the reduced visibility we got on the wrong road coming through Athens as we left the airport, well that's what I'm blaming anyway.  Plane landed at 19:00 and we came through the marina gates in Lefkas at 01:00 so not a bad trip really and the rain stopped for most of the way home.

Half the kit out of the locker.
   On Saturday evening we went to see Janet & David at "Mama Mia's" in Nidri.  They were here from Evia for a few days prior to going back to the UK.  We had a lovely evening with them plus Tony and Liz, just the thing we needed after arriving back in Lefkas at one O'clock that morning.  Unfortunately, we missed Kev's birthday party on the same night, but even for super hero's like us it's difficult to be in two places at one time, I'm sure Kev will forgive us.  The weather was glorious on Saturday twenty two degree's on the boat, the people here were pleased to see it no doubt as it seems it's been wall to wall rain most of the time since we left.

The other half is in there with Sandra.
It's been a little cooler since but not too bad.  Because of all the kit I picked up while we were in the UK I have finally got around to fitting the solar panels we bought last summer, and today I've got them all wired up and working.  I've turned off the battery charging system to see how well our current leisure battery copes with only solar to keep pace with it.  Because all the wiring in the boat was in the large cockpit locker we have taken the opportunity  to tidy it out, as you can see from the photo's it contains a huge amount of kit.  Whilst in there I have discovered the source of the Nile, well at least the source of our mystery water which is slowly filling the bilge on a regular basis.  It was a drip from the sugar scoop shower, god I'm pleased about that, it's been a real problem locating it.  Anyway we now have the outboard mounted properly as well and the decks all scrubbed clean from the brown rain which has been falling, sticks like, well you know what it sticks like!

Thursday, 21 February 2013

The bags are packed, we're ready to go...

Ahhh Indian food at last....
Well, our time here is almost at an end.  We leave for Manchester airport tomorrow morning so I'm having to do the blog a little early today in order to get the computer packed into the case ready for going.  To be fair, Sandra has had us all packed up for a couple of days now, she is really ready to feel a little warmth on her back.  It's not that the weather has been really unkind to us just a typical February scene, we have only had one day of rain and one of snow the rest of the time it's been dry and even sunny at times but the sun has no real heat in it and the wind cuts through you like a knife.
Not that it's cold or anything!

Lock gates into Hull marina.
 We finally managed to have an Indian meal in a restaurant last weekend.  It was nectar, and well worth the wait.  We have still not had fish and chips since we returned to the UK but that is going to be rectified tonight all being well!

We went to see Maureen and Mark at their home on Sunday.  They were both in very good form and we had a smashing day with them.  I helped Mo with the construction of her new raised beds for the garden and had a really great meal with, thanks Mo.  We'll be calling in again tomorrow on the way to the airport to drop off the some garden containers it'll look great come the summer.

Yesterday we took No. two son, Chris, to the hospital to have three wisdom teeth removed, poor lad!  Never mind at least they don't grow back again and it'll be worth having to drink soup for a week.  While Chris was having his operation we took the opportunity to have a look around Hull city center, which we hadn't been to for about fifteen years, it was much improved from what we remembered it with many pedestrian areas and generally very clean, although it's fairly obvious from the closed shops and sales going on that they are suffering from the recession along with everyone else.

Not quite Lefkas but Hull's answer to it.
The big downside was that it was bitterly cold with  a strong wind blowing straight down the Humber estuary and air temperatures of 2 degrees the wind chill must have been well into minus figures, Brrrr.

Price's Quay Hull.
Anyway we got the call from the hospital to go and pick Chris up before we both died of hypothermia and came home with an unusually speechless son, I'm sure it won't last for long!

Oh well I think that's about it for this week, I need to go and wash the hire car before we take it back.  With being in a really rural area the roads are very mucky and the white car is now a deep shade of murky grey.  I would feel guilty taking it back in that state.

Hopefully we should arrive back in Lefkas some time around one o'clock in the morning on Saturday, but you never know with a fair wind we may have a quicker than expected journey.

Friday, 15 February 2013

Doing the Gramps bit...

Work mates don't always vanish after retirement.
Took four of em here in two batches.
 It's been a very hectic week for us on top of the fact that we don't seem to be able to sleep beyond six o'clock in the morning and sometimes not that late.

On Saturday I went out with some of my ex-colleagues from my days at werc wirk, ah whatever, you get my meaning I'm geriatric now and don't need to remember the name for it!  It was great to see the guys again and it good to know that you don't have to never see each other again after you retire, after all you spend more of your waking hours with them when you are working then you do with your family, at least I did.  Thanks for a great night guys and looking forward to the BBQ in the summer, if they have such a thing here!

So with that and other bits and bobs we are completely knackered.  But hey ho, Grandparents gotta do what a Grandparents gotta do.  We took Finley & Mason on Monday and also Jessica & Melissa on Tuesday to Fun Run, a play warehouse in Goole.  And afterwards to McDonalds for a treat.  They had a great time and wore off some of the surplus energy that four to six year old seem to have in abundance.  Four down, Three to Go!!

Joe with his cat.
Wednesday and Sanny spent the day with her dad and one of her old aunts who now lives alone with limited mobility so that made a nice change.  I however spent the day at No. three son's house waiting for stuff to come from internet purchases to bring back to Greece with us.  One is a new PC as my old one has just about reached it's sell by date.  It'll do to leave in the UK for when I'm here and save transporting all that kit and kaboogle every time we go travelling anywhere.  The only problem being transferring all our lives from one to t'other and setting it all up as we want it.  That's still ongoing as I type this.
Adam full up and ready for bed.

Swapping things to the new lappy.
Thursday we had arranged to take Libby, Joe & Adam to the pictures to see "Wreck it Ralph", very funny and we all enjoyed it but I wasn't aware of the costs of going to the cinema nowadays.  With our meal out afterwards it cost us over a hundred quid.  I suppose they don't get much when we are not here though!  Anyway thanks to all the Grandchildren for being absolute stars and keeping us well entertained, I would say you can get into my wallet much easier than most people can but it may be some time before I have anything back in there now.

Hopefully, San and I will be going out for an Indian tonight, most people who know me will be aghast that it's taken over a week to get some spicy food down me but that's the penalty of trying to be all things to all men (for men read Grandchildren, parents, aunt's, uncle's but not son's and daughter in laws for a change!).

Thursday, 7 February 2013

Brrrr it's a bit cawd up north, tha knows...

"Upsidedown" George? Of course!
Editors note:- I have had complaints in the last week about my tardiness and general laziness in the production of this blog of late.  The accusation is that now we are living on a boat, I don't seem to be able to get the blog out on the correct day of the week (Thursday) any more.   Well, my answer is that, in all things connected with this blog I will maintain full editorial privilege and as such I will publish at my convenience which means that in future it will always be on a Thursday unless I forget, have other things to do or don't feel like it!

We went to "Ola Kala" (Up side down Georges) in Nidri on Tuesday evening to celebrate the inordinately slow and very long winded process of the ageing of Debs! She's been twenty three for the five years we've known her and I'm beginning to suspect there may be some porkies being told here.  We started the evening with a champagne reception at the Yacht Club before going for the main event to Ola Kala.  I think a great time was had by all with the possible exception of Kev, who succumbed to George's wily ways and partook of his 100% heat sauce to add to his curry.  He looked like it was a real battle to eat it up but in true Parachute regiment fashion, he didn't leave a big red splodge for others to clean up, well done Kev. 
Deb's Party - Happy Birthday to you...

We had a great meal and a great time with George doing his party tricks on the table, Deb & Ann doing their Saturday night fever impersonation and the TV playing YouTube videos which were never really quite the part!  Thanks Debbie and Jeremy for a really fun night sorry we had to leave early.

Sandra silhouetted against Athens Airport - Hmmmm!  
We set off for Athens the next morning at six thirty and were sat in the Airport under five hours later despite having a coffee and pee stop at Patras.  Everything seemed to go just perfectly the whole journey which really does make a change.  I changed the SIM card in my phone for my UK in the airport and found it was not working.  I thought perhaps just because it was roaming but it still didn't work when we got to Manchester.  So we couldn't ring Sandra's dad as soon as we got there as planned, (have you tried to find a pay phone which takes money lately?) So we had to stop at a motorway service station and buy a new SIM.  You now can't buy them with credit on them so of course you have to go through the rigmarole of registering the card.  I know I'm not young but I think I'm fairly speedy on a keyboard, you try reading a nineteen digit number and typing in the phone in about 15 seconds, it took me about six attempts before got it in time and that was only because by this time I had memorised the number.  And then you have to register a plastic card before you can top it up, phew, all this on top of a long day getting back to the UK.  Anyway suffice to say he was fine when we eventually contacted him.  All the kids seem pleased as we've spoke to them all today but going to see the Grand kids can't happen until school kicks out in about an hours time, so we've still got a lot to do yet today.

Friday, 1 February 2013

Where does the time go...

Ray, Takis & Linda with of course your truly at lunch.
 Well, I'm late again this week, I would think the usual suspects will be reminding me before I get this posted.  The trouble is the someone seems to have stolen at least two days from every week.  Weekend seems to finish and then Sanny is saying to me are you going to do the blog because it's Thursday!!  What happened to the rest of the week.  The peculiar thing is, when we were younger it was the weekends which had the day missing, must be the effects of Anno Domini!

On Wednesday we went to a party at Tree's house at Vournikas for Poros Janet's birthday.  As usual for any party organised by Tree, it was well attended and any Party catered for by Janet, there was abundant food.  Happy Birthday to Janet and also to Babs for Yesterday.  I spent quite a time talking to the singer from "White Beach", Andy, to whom I gave a bit of a slating last week.  I don't retract what I said as I think they they were new, untested and did improve radically as the night went on but for those of you who want to see them they are at "Mama Mia's" in Nidri this Saturday.  I Know the band and Andy have been having long practice sessions, so go on give em a try.
Linda's bright way of lighting a slightly dark corner.

We spent the afternoon yesterday at Ray & Linda's for Lunch, again on the time theme, I could not believe how fast the afternoon went and it was dark before we got home.  Super lunch Linda, as always and thank you very much for a smashing afternoon, and I apologise if Ray and I were reticent to come out of our little conversational huddle and ignored everyone.  I did feel a little guilty about not talking to Takis too much after lunch, please pass on my apologies to him.  Again there just isn't enough time!

My final comments this week also are on the same theme.  As most of you will know we go back to the UK next Wednesday for a couple of weeks.  I just can't help feeling it's crept up very fast, I was going to do tons of things before we went back and I've done hardly anything, it was Christmas now it's it February!
We're really looking forward to going home and seeing the family Son's, Daughter in Laws, Grandchildren and Sanny's dad all in equal measure (well nearly equal!).