Monday, 14 August 2017
Tuesday, 1 August 2017
We went into Guildford this morning, using the park and ride facility. Getting off the bus at the top of High Street, we headed downhill and immersed ourselves in the farmers’ market which is held here on the first Tuesday of each month. There is a wide variety of stalls all run by local producers of meat, fish and shellfish, cheeses, fruit, vegetables, craft beers - a genuine cornucopia.There were also stalls offering freshly baked pies, pastries and breads, several with an international twist. We were looking for two lunches and two evening meal items (today and tomorrow), and by the time we reached the bottom of the hill we had collected two giant Cornish-style pasties, samosas, borek, and arancini. I was tempted by freshly boiled brown crabs, oysters, impressive lemon soles, smoked trout, just too much to contemplate on one visit; we will just have to come back in September.
Nostalgically there was a stall cooking an authentic paella to tempt us, but we resisted. We are still enjoying getting reacquainted with all those things that you can get here but not in Spain. As a bonus, the day is sunny and warm (but not too warm).
Wednesday, 26 July 2017
We have a week booked in a hotel in Southport back in Lancashire at the beginning of September to see whether that is where we would like to settle. I'm already property hunting on Rightmove and Zoopla, so I've short-listed a number of estate agents to contact nearer the time. I've also drawn up a spec of what we need/want which includes the requirement that whatever property we buy must have two toilets; that is the deal breaker. Just shows how old we both are, even though we don't feel it.
We've got our bus passes, I'm waiting for an appointment with an orthopoedic specialist to see what if anything can be done about my back problems, yesterday I had a full diabetic review (all fine on that front) and I'm hoping that my application for a 'blue badge' for the car will soon be approved.
So slowly but surely we're getting there.
Monday, 10 July 2017
The salesman showed us a 2008 which ticked all of our boxes, including the price we managed to secure, so my wife picks it up on Thursday morning and we shall then once again have our own set of wheels.
I know that's not how you buy a car, but we did.
Thursday, 6 July 2017
Effectively that rules out the south of England as a whole, so we have had to review our options, and currently our hopes are pinned on Southport on the Lancashire coast where prices are very much lower. However, it's also a major U.K. holiday resort which means that for the next couple of months available accommodation is thin on the ground and very expensive so we have an enforced pause.
So right now we can devote our time to dealing with British bureaucracy, which thankfully is much less complicated than Spanish, and staffed by people whose aim is to be helpful rather than obstructive. Temporary registration at the local health center was dealt with on our first visit and took no more than fifteen minutes even though the girl on reception was new and had to keeping popping into the back office to check that she was doing things correctly' unfortunately the earliest appointment she could offer me for a consultation with a GP to set up my medication requirements was a fortnight away.
Yesterday a trip to the library in Guildford was all it took to apply for a pensioners' bus pass and it will arrive within fifteen days. I was also provided with the form on which to apply for my blue badge for the car. Letters have gone off to HMRC to announce our resumption of tax resident status, so we are making good progress.
Perhaps the best thing of all is that youngest granddaughter has given up her bed for me, leaping at the chance to sleep with mummy. The bed really deals with my discomfort, and so after six months of literally sofa-surfing I am sleeping comfortably in a bed.
The next adventure has begun!