Thursday, 31 July 2008

Richard and Sam Shafer visit

We were delighted to meet up with our friends Richard and Sam Shafer who we met in the Philippines last year. Richard, a Professor of Media Studies at the University of North Dakota had been lecturing in Sweden and he and Sam decided to do a mini Euro tour on their way home. So they decided that London and Dartmouth would give a good flavour (flavor - USA spelling!) of England. We visited Slapton Sands, where Richard's father may have trained during WW2. Here Sam braved the English channel to swim with Julia. We also took them to Dartmouth castle and walked a lot. Their trip culminated in a 'crabbing' session off the banks of the River Dart. Catching the ferry from Plymouth to Roscoff, they continued their trip to via Paris before flying home to Richard's wife Jill, and their older son Paul. It was lovely to meet up with them again.

Saturday, 26 July 2008

Sailing in Jireh

Taking advantage of a bit or summery weather today, Lydia and I went out for a short sail on Jireh. Lynn and Julia were otherwise occupied but we decided to go and enjoy gentle breezes and a bit of sun. If anything it was too gentle a breeze but was very relaxing.

I manage to get out once or twice a week for a sail.

Monday, 21 July 2008

Hannah Watson BA(Hons)!

It was a real pleasure to attend Hannah's graduation ceremony in Portsmouth Guildhall. She looked very learned! It was also a real blessing to see Jonathan and Becky again and they once again allowed us to stay with them for the night. Well done Hannah!

The picture shows proud parents and fiance with the graduation girl.

Friday, 18 July 2008

After a wet week in the Lake District it was good to enjoy the comfort of my mother's new house near Durham. She has lived there only for a few months but is enjoying the change. I am sure that the 'gypsy' blood she has in her gives her 'itchy feet' every few years - we have a bit of this ourselves! My niece Katy has two lovely children: Joseph and Cloe and they are growing very quickly. They referred to me as "that old man with grey hair"! I ask you!
It was also good to see my nephew Ben, the airline pilot - doing very well flying all over the world. Hazel, my sister must be very proud of him.
Anyway, it made a very ending to our holidays and we were even able to get some of the tents dried out!

Monday, 14 July 2008

Wet week in the Lakes!

After 7 hours of driving we arrived at our campsite at Keswick in the Lake District only to find it packed with campers. Glad that we had booked (others were turned away) we were shown to the only suitable pitch. It wasn't great, having some dips in the ground, and the forecast being for rain. But we pitched and went for a paddle, Lynn trying out her newly acquired Easky 15 kayak. The next morning we awoke to torrential rain so had a slow start, walking into town for lunch and to get 'in the mood' for being in the Lakes again. Well, it rained and rained! However, we did manage to take a stroll up Walla Crag and across to Ashness Bridge one day and up Castle Crag in the heart of Borrowdale on another day, taking advantage of breaks in the weather. On the other days we went paddling on the beautiful Derwent Water, exploring islands and such. We were surprised to bump into friends from Dartmouth Baptist Church - what a small world. During our holiday we were in close contact with Hannah who was interviewing for a job with the Jubilee Sailing Trust. We prayed hard and rejoiced together when she was offered the job. Now we are home it is time to dry out. More about our visit to see my mother, sister and her family in Durham in the next posting.

Tuesday, 1 July 2008

Busy weekend on the river

This was a particularly busy weekend on the river Dart. It is amazing how much is happening on the water in this popular port. Two yacht taxi duties kept me chugging away non-stop in 'Maid', the harbour authority water taxi. The other drivers also experienced very busy shifts. However, one of the bonuses in the job is meeting with some very interesting people from all walks of life.

Yesterday Lynn, Julia and took the kayaks up to Dittisham for a short but pleasant paddle. Now that Julia is getting bigger and has 'moved up' to a larger kayak she has become a much stronger paddler. We are all looking forward to travelling up to Keswick on Saturday for a week of camping, kayaking and walking in the Lake District (the photo is of a previous visit to the Lakes in 2005). We are then going to Durham to visit my mum and big sister Hazel.

We are thankful to God for looking after our dear friend and brother Tony Ryder who underwent heart surgery last Friday. Tony is up and about and it was good to see him at church on Sunday.