When I was staying on the east side of England recently, while I visited my daughter and grandsons, I had decided to take lots of warm clothes because it is generally colder, windier as well as flat, compared to the west side of England. Those cold winds tear in from the North Sea with nothing to protect that side of the country from the onslaught.
I annoy my daughter by telling her that the West is generally protected because of the Gulf Stream and of course all the hills.
"You and your Gulf Stream," she says!
Anyway the first Monday that we were there, it turned out to be really sunny even though it was coldish.
Deb told us to jump in the car and said she would take us to a local beauty spot.
The boys had been sitting in front of the computer all morning and the thought of going out in the cold did not appeal.
We tried coaxing, cajolling, shaming ........ everything we could think of to get them out of the house. It was only the threat of no more computer games the next day that got them to put their noses out of the door.
After much moaning and groaning, by the boys, we all piled into the car.
We travelled through lovely scenery and after quite a lot of driving.......... Deb admitted she was lost. I spied a nice canal with long boats and barges, so we stopped to take some pictures.
We noticed a tow path running by the side of the canal, so we decided to walk along the path.
The oldest grandson moaned and groaned and protested some more. However he soon realized that there were things of interest to see and gradually the moaning stopped and he picked up a long stick and off he set, whacking at the grass alongside the path.
It really was a lovely walk and there were many small boats tied up along the canal, which went on for miles, by the look of it.
After the boats, we came to a rugged patch and it was questionable whether I could make it over the slippery mud. We were all laughing but, as I pointed out, I am not able to swim and was slithering about on the edge of the water. However, I am sure anyone falling into that cold water would soon die of hyperthermia, even if they could swim.
The scenery was fantastic and we walked and walked until we suddenly realized that the clocks had gone back the night before, and the sun was getting really low in the sky.
The thought of walking through all that mud in the dark was a bit daunting, so we reluctantly turned round. I had picked up a stout stick by then to lean on in the tricky places and I also began to pick some huge leaves. When I got to the muddy patches, I put the leaves down over the mud and my feet didn't slip.
Deb thought it was really funny, but this really stopped me from sliding.
By then the boys had gone on ahead suddenly enthusiastic to do their own thing and were waiting at the entrance to this place, by the car.
They had had a really good time, in spite of everything they had said previously.
Once we get them away from the computer they do have fun. It is just the thought of going out in the cold that stops them from wanting to leave the house in the first place.
You can see how dark it was getting just before we reached the car.
When we returned home to the West, later in the week, it was really cold! Gulf Stream or no Gulf Stream!