Wednesday 4th, January
Today we are heading out to see some of the local sites but before that, Christine accompanied Leisha and Otis for their morning walk; not the beach today as there is a gale blowing so past the golf course and into the countryside. Whilst they were away, David showed me his “outbuildings” and more importantly where he is building a bar in his “pub”.
After the dog walk we all jumped into Leisha’s pride and joy, her self-charging Lexus and headed along the coast road towards Llandudno, who wants to race along the A55 unnecessarily??? Anyway arriving in Llandudno on this bleak January day where everywhere looked closed up didn’t inspire us to park and have a wander; another time, maybe in the summer!! So without stopping decided to drive to the top of the great Orme as Christine had been there before, but first stop was the Year-round centre offering an artificial ski & snowboarding slope, a toboggan run, tubing & mini golf.
Being an all year-round centre we expected to see numerous families watching or participating on the ski slope but was surprised by how few there were; in fact we probably saw more Great Orme Goats than people!!! After a short stroll we headed to the summit of the great Orme.
Arriving at the top to an empty car park should have told us- – – – – – It was blowing a “gale-and-a-half” and as we found out when we struggled out of the car, it was 🥶🥶🥶🥶🥶 cold!!! Dave did manage to walk across the car park horizontally, whilst I, in my wisdom tried to put my coat on which was in the boot; what a disaster, and to add to our woes, Leisha’s boot is automatic, press the button to open and press again to close. The boot lid shot up as it was “wind-assisted” but refused to close against the wind, it was too strong. We ended up pressing the button with two of us pushing it down at the same time: a struggle but we managed. Our excursion to the great Orme summit was now curtailed, cold wind stopped play!!!
This was another mistake and again should have realised as the cable-tram and ski lift thing was closed for the winter, as well as the museum at the top.
Back down nearer to sea level we rejoined the toll road, a one-way system that circumnavigates the Great Orme and then headed to Conway, stopping off in Deganwy at the Quay Spa Hotel for coffee and snacks overlooking the river Conway, and the magnificent Conway Castle. Conway Castle is deemed a world heritage site by UNESCO.
After our “lunch” we headed into Conway, parked and wandered about. Chatting to a couple of locals I found out there was a fish stall on the quay that sold “kippers” so suggested Christine might like to head that way with Leisha whilst David and I headed into the Liverpool Arms.
The Liverpool arms, situated on Conway quay is the oldest traditional pub in Conway and is a few doors away from the “smallest house in Britain” with a floor area of 10ft X 5’ 9”; oh yes it is painted red!!!
Dave and I enjoyed a pint, sitting by a nice fire whilst waiting for the girls. Christine was first to arrive with a look of disappointment on her face; the “Kipper” shop was closed!!! Leisha arrived soon after, but as she was the “chauffeur” for the day found it hard to sit in a pub with no drink!!! We all quickly finished our drinks and headed out.
Our drive back was much quicker as we sped along at A55 and arriving in good time for a couple of G & T’s whilst Dave prepared dinner for us. By now unfortunately Christine was displaying symptoms of the dreaded “lurgy” that seems to be circulating, sore throat, cough etc.
At the appointed “hour” Dave served dinner, and very nice it was but Christine was obviously poorly as I had to finish hers as well as mine!!! Christine went to bed early whist the three of us lingered at the table putting the world to rights. After clearing up, Dave and I cracked the bottle of Malt I’d bought whilst in Scotland and enjoyed a nightcap.
Thursday 5th January
Today is our last day as we head back to Somerset but first, the four of us are heading out for a breakfast. We are heading to Dyserth to a café that apparently serves a “jolly-good” breakfast, but en-route we are going show Christine Dyserth Waterfall. Christine has “pilled-up” this morning, and a good sign is, she is hungry!!
Dyserth Waterfall, North Wales is on the River Ffyddion, a tributary of the River Clwyd, that falls down a 70-foot ledge creating the waterfall. Parking was an issue so David and Christine hopped out of our respective cars walked up, took ‘photos and straight back into the cars. We headed to the café just around the corner, arrived, parked up only to be disappointed, it was closed, oh dear where to now?
Meliden is our next destination, “Y Shed”, a regenerated old derelict Grade ll listed building that has been championed by a local charitable housing association. We quickly arrived and parked, but now had to get “a-move-on” as the breakfast “hours” were coming “swiftly” to an end. We had no choice where we sat being so busy, but found the last table and rushed to “beat the deadline” for breakfast orders. Apart from the restaurant, this place is quite a tourist hub housing a small museum about the local history of Meliden, several arty-crafty shops; it was primarily developed to help local budding entrepreneurs and artisans to get established.
Our breakfast duly arrived; just what the doctor ordered and it will mean we don’t have to stop on our way back to Hope Farm.
At this point we must thank Leisha and David for making us so welcome and very comfortable especially bearing in mind it hasn’t been very long since they moved into their new house, they are still unpacking boxes etc
Following our good byes Christine and I headed south, not the longer, fastest conventional route, A55-M56-M6-M5; I had had enough of motorways!!! No, we were taking the shorter but about an hour longer route, we went over the Horseshoe Pass into Llangollen, picked up the A5 then headed down passed Ross-on -Wye and over the Severn Bridge before picking up the M5 for the last part to Weston, but before heading south, we swung by my old farm in Henllan to see if there were any major changes but the visibility was so misty with rain and low clouds, couldn’t see anything; the good news was my local, “The Llindir Inn” was still going. Back en route but Unfortunately once Christine’s pills had worn off she was feeling groggy again, and the last place she wanted to be was sitting in the car!!!!, I on the other hand was “happy-as-Larry” being on conventional roads! There was a glint in her eye though whilst driving through Church Stretton, we clocked diesel even cheaper than Moffat, so did a quick U turn and filled up.
Back at Hope Farm in time for dinner followed by bed.
Friday 6th January to Tuesday 10th January
All our ducks are in a row, we had originally planned to complete on Monday 9th January but after a couple of ‘phone calls and agreement with the vendor, completed this afternoon. Yeah we have a home again, well we will once the necessary remedial works have been completed. The main reason to complete today instead of Monday is: we have lined up the necessary tradesmen to start just after 0800hrs, we don’t want them hanging around while solicitors take their time!!!
For anybody not knowing the issues, here they are. The vendor purchased a new home and put the bungalow on the market. Unfortunately well down the line, the vendors sale fell through so we agreed to buy but all this took several months. In the early part of December there was a very cold snap and Somerset wasn’t exempt and a pipe from the header tank burst depositing unknown gallons of water across the ceilings. As the vendor hadn’t lived in the property for over 6-months and hadn’t informed her insurance company, there was no insurance in place!!! We quickly got in tradesmen to get budget prices and then offered to continue with the purchase at a re-negotiated price. Fortunately we arrived at a suitable figure and now we own a bungalow that needs new ceilings in master bedroom, hallway and kitchen, new floors in master bedroom and kitchen along with the associated electric and plumbing costs, firstly for on-going safety and then reinstallation, fit a new kitchen, redecorate throughout and new fit carpets; not too much, in fact a walk in the park!!!!! “Every Cloud ….. and all that”, this also means we can make alterations to suit our needs.🤠🤠🤠🤠
Fortunately we have Rosie so will take her down, park at the rear and live in her whilst “things” get done.
We parked Rosie up outside the garage and plugged into the mains. We had our boiler repaired so our heating system works and once the water tank is full, we’ll have hot water. Wrong; we filled the water tank, so far so good, switched the pump on and blow me, we have a leak in the underneath. Whilst parked outside Jane’s barn a “not-so-friendly” rat “may” have chewed through the plastic water pipe or, there was some residual water in the pipe after we emptied everything which froze. Until we can get Rosie into somewhere we will not know but experience suggests to me it will be the former; nasty little blighters👹👹👹👹
By the “close of play” on Tuesday, the place was devastated, ceilings down, carpets out, floors removed, electrician had made everything safe, plumber had disconnected all necessary pipe work as we are going to fit new combination boiler, de-humidifiers and fans up and running trying to dry the place out; everything ready for repairs and rebuilds to start.
The break in Scotland and Wales did us well, it gave us the necessary strength for this un-expected project.