20th & 21st January
In preparation for our first trip abroad in our motorhome, we were advised that we would be unlikely to get Calor Gas, but LPG was commonly sold in garages. With all our future plans to travel abroad, we decided to get an LPG twin gas tank system fitted and this was completed in Warminster on 20th January.
From here I drove up to Wheathill near Ludlow, where we spent a very comfortable night with Emma and John. Their woodburner was blazing and with G&Ts in hand, we quickly forgot the freezing temperatures outside. Next day Mum & Dad came up to see The Beast parked on the driveway and later we all visited the Three Horseshoes for lunch. During our chatting, Emma reminded me that we had mentioned calling our motorhome Della as she is an Autotrail Dellaware.
From here on, she will be called Della, she is not really a beast!
After lunch we started off on the drive up to Houghton in Staffordshire and set up alongside another motorhome and a caravan. Another grey, leaden sky and temperatures dropping like a stone.
It was a freezing morning but we had been warm all night. Alison, Chris and my grandsons, Jago and Ned arrived around 11am and the boys were very excited to see inside our Motorhome, they looked in all the cupboards and drawers, and were occupied for ages with the concertina door! After coffee, we walked around to see the animals on the site; goats, llamas, ducks, geese, rabbits and guinea pigs which the boys enjoyed, and managed to find some unfrozen muddy puddles to stamp in.
The next drive was just over 78 miles south to Morton in Marsh.
We were lucky to pick our plot on this lovely site in the Cotswolds. Located in a corner with a large oak tree in the hedgeline, we had birds feeding close by and views of sheep through the hedge. We had a long and peaceful night, it was 8:50am when we woke up! With the day to ourselves, and after a slap up breakfast of bacon, egg, mushrooms and tomatoes we felt fit for a walk and set off over fields and lanes, around in front of Batsford House and back into Morton in Marsh.
There were birds everywhere, the best being hundreds of fieldfares and redwings, a lovely little goldcrest and male bullfinch. The dry stone walls were beautiful and a herd of red deer with two magnificent stags were lying down in front of the house. Once back in this lovely old market town, we found The Bell Inn on the High Street and had a few well earned beers whilst chatting to the very friendly and knowledgeable Landlord. There was a terrific sunset which seemed to last ages and nicely finished off our day.
Today we met up with Jennifer and Leo at Birdland in Bourton on the Water. I remember coming here with my Granny and now I’m showing my grandson – where have the years gone!
His favourites were the penguins swimming so close the glass sides that you could touch them, quite solid and very cold on this day. They swam so fast they splashed water all over us but it was fun.
We spent a few hours looking at all the birds and walked back to Della to have a hot drink and our lunch in comfort.
Having gone our separate ways, I drove us back home arriving just before it got dark. After nearly 400 miles round trip I was looking forward to relaxing. Unfortunately the house was absolutely freezing as the pressure in the cental heating system had dropped and it must have been off for a couple of days. It took two days to thoroughly warm the house up again!