Sunday, October 13, 2019

Mosaic Monday #49: And perhaps a hedgehog

We're going on vacation!  I must admit, I am amused by the concept of "vacation" for folks who are retired.  "Vacation: An extended period of leisure and recreation, especially one spent away from home or in traveling."  We are already enjoying leisure and recreation, and we sure are extending it.  Our destinations are Northeast England and Hamburg, Germany, which ticks the box for time away from home/traveling.  That settles it, then.  As of today, we are officially on vacation!






Faithful readers know my in-laws live near Durham, England.  While I may have lost count of the number of times we have returned to the village of my husband's youth, I maintain my enthusiasm for our visit and all it has to offer.  These last few days, as the clock wound down to our departure, I found myself daydreaming about the trip, and all the things I am anticipating.

Such as the chicken.  No, not chicken you eat, but the hen that is cared for by my father-in-law.  I probably won't be up early enough to release her from the hen house, but I like to pair up with Dad to check for eggs and tuck her away safely for the night.

Re-uniting with family and friends is always a highlight of our visits.  I am blessed with terrific in-laws, and I am looking forward to spending time with them, whether it's looking after the hen, watching soap operas (East Enders and Coronation Street) with my mother-in-law, or experiencing a new pub for a bar meal.  In recent years, my in-laws have become quite adept at carving pumpkins, which is catching on in the UK.  Since we can't be home for the Halloween costume contest in Whitefish, at least we can get in some pumpkin action.

My husband's one and only cousin began singing publicly as part of a duo about four years ago, and recently she made the transition to a solo act.  I know it is easy to be biased when it is family, but let me tell you, this woman can sing, and plays guitar and piano to boot.  We are delighted that she will have a gig during our visit - my dancing shoes are packed and ready to light up the dance floor.

The first time I lived in the UK, I worked with a woman who has become a life-long friend, even though we might only see each other once a year.  It has become our tradition to savor afternoon tea while catching up on 12 months' worth of news.  Our last "outing" was in July 2018, and she put on quite a spread at her house, which we enjoyed in the summer sunshine of her back garden.  We haven't firmed up arrangements for this trip, but I am already salivating for the finger sandwiches and pastries that I know will be part of our get-together.

After a couple days getting acclimated to our new time zone, we'll jet over to Hamburg to visit one of our former au pairs.  We hope to participate in Oktoberfest, complete with dirndl dress and lederhosen, but in any event we'll be content to tour this magnificent city in the capable hands of our au-pair-who-became-a-medical-doctor.

This week, I mentioned my daydreaming to a friend in Whitefish, and she quipped, "Surely you're not looking forward to England's cuisine."  Truth be told, foodstuffs were top of mind.  A full English breakfast.  Toasted tea cakes.  Pie, peas and chips (meat pie, mushy peas and French fries).  Bourbon biscuits (cookies).  Sunday dinner (usually roast beef, roasted potatoes, parsnips, carrots, peas, Yorkshire puddings - popovers, gravy).  Fish and chips, at the seaside.  A cheese board for dessert, preferably with Tawny Port.

With all those calories on offer, I am committed to my running regime, and also thankful that walking the public footpaths will be high on our agenda, regardless of the weather. There may be sheep, and there will certainly be a pub somewhere along the way.  Possibly a random castle, and assuredly an ancient churchyard.

And if I am REALLY blessed, a hedgehog!

Note: given our travel on Sunday into Monday, I may be delayed in commenting, but I will be on line.  I also plan to post Mosaic Monday per the normal schedule.  Hope you join us!



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38 comments:

  1. I hope you have an absolutely fabulous time!

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  2. Have a grand time! We had family yesterday and today. My in-laws are long gone.

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  3. Have a lovely time! 😊 Kit

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  4. Enjoy Northeast England. We were there over 10 years ago at Christmas it was grand. Our daughter and family were living there at the time and it was a nice visit. We’re off to Ireland in two weeks. Today we’re in FL. You’re correct we are retired but vacation is a break from the norm. Safe travels!!!!

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  5. Wish you a fantastisc time on your vacation. Each travel is a good Break.

    Happy MosaicMonday

    Greetings by Heidrun xxx

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  6. ...enjoy your time, it shouldn't snow there!

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  7. Have a wonderful time!
    Wow, Coronation Street is still on!? I watched it back in the 70's.

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  8. I've always wanted to see a live hedgehog - have a great time!

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  9. Oh Angie I can't wait to hear all about your vacation adventures! A holiday can be hard work, so you can always come home for a rest, although your retired life seems full-on :)
    It is always fun seeing what others love about being in the UK so I do hope you see the hedgehog, enjoy your favourite pub meals and afternoon tea treat catch up with old friends. Not to mention enjoy some Oktober Fest beer!
    Happy Hols.
    Wren x

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  10. We call them getaways instead of “vacations from our vacation”....and long or short they are a vital part of retirement for us! Enjoy every moment of yours! It all sounds wonderful .

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  11. Have a wonderful time visiting family and friends on your travels, Angie!

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  12. Have a wonderful vacation Angie - and I am looking forward to both your photo stories and the words that describe what you saw, did, learned, shared ....
    Thank you too for your 49th Mosaic Monday.
    Joy

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  13. WE are retired and we have vacations too. Lovely to get away from the everyday, visit new places, old places, meet up with family and friends. Enjoy!

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  14. Hello Angie, Vacations are great. I would like to see a hedgehog. Wishing your fun and safe travels. Thanks for hosting. Enjoy your day, wishing you a great new week ahead.

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  15. What a wonderful prospect a vacation away from a vacation ;-) It all sounds lovely, Angie. I'm sure you'll enjoy it immensely.

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  16. A lovely read complemented by wonderful images, as always, Angie. I look forward to seeing more photos from your vacation.

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  17. Oh, you'll have such a wonderful time! You always find the best places to go and being with family and friends will make it perfect! ENJOY!!!

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  18. The hedgehog is doubtless the icing on the proverbial cake.

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  19. Sounds like a wonderful trip. I wish I could go on a trip like that. It makes such a difference when you know someone or have lived there. Your story of the friend you worked with reminds me of a book I read recently. When I remember the title, I'll come back and add it. I think you would enjoy it.

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  20. I enjoy the sense of anticipation you have for your upcoming time with family and friends, and yes, even English cuisine. Happy travels, Angie!

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  21. Whooo-hoooo! You're on vacation!! Or, if we must, Leisure and Recreation for the Retired! Whooo-hooo! I love the sound of your vacation, excuse me, leisure & recreation with your in-laws. It's my kind of hanging loose with people you love and oh so comfortable with. And your line-up of food, yummmmm! Happy Trails, Angie. :-)

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  22. Sounds like a great plan. Have fun!

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  23. Dear Angie - Your vacation plan made me feel excited, too. It looks spiced up with various different plans including the reunion with your relatives and old friends, English dishes, and moderate exercises. I look forward to your souvenir talks and photos.

    Yoko

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  24. Dear Angie, enjoy your vacation! So great that you have family there... Have visited Hamburg but not during Oktoberfest - must be quite an experience! Looking forward to your vacation posts. That hedgehog is adorable <3

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  25. Enjoy your trip and have a wonderful time.

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  26. Have a wonderful trip … safe travels.

    All the best Jan

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  27. Oh love the tiny hedgehog and what a delightful place you are going on 'vacation' ~ Has everything ~ most important great people ~ Wonderful post and enjoy your journey ~

    Happy Day to You,
    A ShutterBug Explores,
    aka (A Creative Harbor)

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  28. Happy holidays my friend,great post and beautiful pics,hope your day is a good one Angie xx

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  29. wishing you a wonderful vacation...looking forward to lots of pictures!! the carved pumpkin is a masterpiece and the hedgehog is adorable!!

    you are lucky to have great in-laws!!!

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  30. Enjoy your visit! Hopefully you will get some lovely foliage!

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  31. It's good to know your gonna have a great time.

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  32. Oh Dear Angie. I am disappointed that you would watch our soaps! That's the time I do my blogging when Sue shuts the bedroom door and I hear those awful tunes and London accents. And how dare your friends think our steak and kidney pie is beneath them. I must have words.

    Enjoy and Have a great time.

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  33. It sounds like a great trip you are planning. I spend a couple days in Durham years ago when I traveled in Great Britain with a railroad pass. Nice place.

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  34. Enjoy your trip! When we visited the UK several years ago, we thought the food just fine. English food has been much maligned over the years.

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  35. Have a wonderful holiday! You had me at roast beef!!! A Hedgehog, they are so cute, I have not seen one for years, they are about in NZ but hard to find these days.

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  36. I am reading this a wee bit late as I know you are well on the way enjoying your vacation. LOVE that sweet little Hedgehog. I know you are enjoying your trip. =)

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  37. Enjoy your time. Hope you have good weather while there for all those footpaths that are waiting for you. I know you will find lots of lovely views.

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