Monday, 8 October 2018

Weekends

Hello... anybody out there?

My last blog post seems to have gone out into a black hole. Having written a long review of what I had been reading lately and then only receiving two comments, I came to the conclusion that either it was totally uninteresting or possibly I had offended in my opinions (it wouldn't be the first time). Then I wondered were people put off by me slipping in another little mention of my India trip (Did you see what I did there?) But no, when I checked the stats it would seem hardly anyone even read my post. So I am consoling myself  in the knowledge that you have all been away doing something fabulous all weekend that has meant no time for reading blogs... so please don't burst my bubble and tell me you just weren't interested!


Our weekends have taken on a rather nice routine lately in a concerted effort not to let all days drift into one. With both of us at home for a large amount of the time is is easy for each day to seem the same as the last and there is a temptation to carry on with work related stuff seven days a week. Monday to Friday I am trying to concentrate on work related activities around teaching and making art but for the past few weekends we have perused the guide books and have taken ourselves off for longer than usual walks, exploring different neighbourhood areas.


The dog is especially pleased with this new routine with lots of new places to sniff and explore.


Yesterday we discovered Houghton House, the ruins of a 17th century mansion that was built as a hunting lodge in 1615 for Mary, Countess of Pembroke. With loggias possibly designed by Inigo Jones, it commands impressive views over the Bedfordshire countryside.


We also walked through an ancient wood where we literally were fighting our way through overgrown brambles... until we spotted a pathway only a couple of yards to our left that had been cleared for a mountain bike race. Funnily enough the walk became much easier after that!


We have walked across meadows, around lakes and along river banks enjoying spotting the various wildlife. We nearly always manage a church or two for a wander around as well. Last week we found a palace in Buckden that had been home to former Bishops of Lincoln. Five of them were buried in the churchyard


But the work life balance isn't going to always be divided so neatly between the weekdays and weekends as I have just started a part time job in a little cafe to supplement the household income. I did five hours on Saturday, wiping tables, operating the till and serving food and coffee after which I came home and pretty much didn't move until I crept into an early bed... shocking...9.30 pm on a Saturday night! I'm hoping the exhaustion induced inertia won't last as I get used to it. I managed to go in and help out for a couple of hours again yesterday before we went out for our walk and I was fine, so maybe I was just extra tired the day before.


It is a very pretty place to work as you can see and friendly too. I was also given barista training last week and was probably a little too excited at my first attempt at latte art. Especially as I think it is all a bit of nonsense really... Who cares what it looks like as long as it tastes okay... but that's just between you and me, okay!


This might just be the limit of my barista skills... could it be another 60 x 60 maybe? Which would mean I only have to do one more new thing to get to number 60 before I begin my 100 count down!

So what did you get up to this weekend?

37 comments:

  1. Hi Gina

    I was in deed away last weekend up in Skipton for the Yarndale weekend. This weekend has been a much slower pace with a little gardening, crafting and the usual bore of household chores. Your weekend looks to have been a lot more exciting than mine. The cafe looks lovely too and I'm sure you'll get the hang of being a barrister:-)

    Mitzi

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    1. I wouldn't have minded being in Skipton for Yarndale! And I'm all for relaxed pottering about weekends too!

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    2. If anything weekends go all too quickly Gina and then you have to wait a whole week till the next one:-)

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  2. In my defence I was away in Berlin visiting my son! ;)
    What a pretty little cafe, enjoy your new job Gina!!

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    1. I just knew everyone was away 😉 Berlin sounds very exciting!

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  3. Gina, I did read your excellent post about reading and made several notes about recommended reads. It was not in vain! As for your walks, despite living very close to those locations I had not visited any of them. You seem to find extra hours in your days. .. Love the look of that café. I'm definitely going there. Keep up the reading and writing!

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    1. I'm not sure any of those books are reading group material Anne but I do have several on the waiting pile that might make the grade. We just pick a walk each week from a couple of Pathfinder books of local walks. We have discovered some lovely places. There's a lovely one that goes around the Wimpole estate.

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  4. I also read the poat and took notes but my ipad updated and yet again locked me out of google! Typed up a comment which would not then load. Let’s hope today’s does. I also took on a 4 hour shift on Tuesday in my 60th year and enjoyed it greatly. I did barista training but the number of variations that people want in the making of their coffee is hilarious! Enjoy!

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    1. Technology is great when it works! I do think the whole coffee think is a bit of a joke... whatever happened to either having it black with or without added milk or made with hot milk. That's about the sum of it!

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  5. I read all your posts Gina but never think to let you know! I love the gluten free cake based ones but also where you've been and what you've been up to. So don't feel lonely we are out here somewhere so keep blogging, please. This as Colin (husband) but it's really from me Barbara.

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    1. My post was partly in jest as I do know that I'm lucky to have people read and that there is not always time to comment or anything to say! It was just particularly quiet over the weekend! Anyway, I'm glad you enjoy reading my posts Barbara, thank you!

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  6. Not sure how I missed your last post but I’ll blame being in Pembrokeshire and an eye op! I love going for a wander with the dogs this time of year, no challenge of the heat and the colours are much more exciting. And the views in the winter are wonderful! Enjoy your baristaing! I love my odd bits behind the bar at the pub as it’s just different people in a different setting.

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    1. See, I was right... you were away somewhere lovely! I much prefer walking at this time of year... more comfortable for everyone!

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  7. An interesting weekend for you.We went to Manchester to meet up with our eldest granddaughter who has just started Uni .An art gallery visit ,lunch and lots of chat.She is now less than an hour away from here ,much nearer than Cambridge ,so hopefully we will see lots more of her.She is a trained barista because she has worked in her gap her in Stir in Cambridge,her mum's coffee shop.It won Cambridge coffee shop of the year for the third year running.She is hoping to get a bit of a barista job in Manchester.
    Have you been to the Wren Library in Cambridge?Well worth a visit.

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    1. It's sounds like you had a busy weekend too! I've never visited The Wren library, despite having gone past it on the river. Something else to add to my list... thank you!

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  8. I noticed that I had problems with commenting last weekend, I commented on a few blogs and my comment disappeared after pressing publish. I did some faffing and eventually cleared cookies and cache and started from scratch. By sheer luck, all is good now but I know I am not the only one losing comments, as if the publish button was secretly changed to be a delete button. Considering the domination of the internet by Google, I always wonder why Blogger is so crap!

    Anyway, your new routine sounds fun. I would love to do something similar but to be honest, I barely have enough energy to get dressed on a Saturday and Sunday. A new adventure would probably send me over the edge. I admit that I quite like latte art, I like to think that the barista takes a fancy and is telling me with a particular nice pattern.... as if! Have a lovely week. x

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    1. Ha! I shall be careful who I send my latte hearts out to now 😉 I hope you have a good week too Christina x

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  9. Hi Gina, I do read your posts however, sometimes its a week after you've posted.I am now in full flow of Nanny Daycare for our 1 year old grandson (3 days a week) The rest of the time I'm fitting in WI, flower club, quiz nights and thankfully my yoga class. My respite is to retreat to my workroom where I stitch, knit and catch up with blog posts.I did read your book report and like you I have got a pile waiting to be read.Thank you for highlighting where to go in your area, always handy for future trips.

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    1. I'm exhausted reading all that. I know from the little bit of childcare that we do it is totally exhausting so I've a lot of admiration for you to do three days!

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  10. I too try and make weekends a bit special now that I’m retired. Your walks look lovely and I would definitely visit your cafe if I was near. I must have missed your book post. I’m off to visit it now :) B x

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    1. I always love the look of your walks on Jersey Barbara. So beautiful!

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  11. Not a lot! is my answer to your last question. But you have been very busy and active as usual. The cafe looks most inviting - I would definitely drop in for a cuppa if I was in the area.
    Your walks seem to be quite lengthy but have taken you to some very interesting places - no wonder you were tired after that long day on your feet at work as well!

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    1. The weekends seem to get busier and busier!

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  12. I too read your previous post (and in fact read all your posts) but rarely comment. William Boyd is on my reading list now.Your life certainly sounds busy - I'm not surprised you feel tired at times! My weekend was trying to restore order to my garden after this strange summer although being retired they are no different from any other day now.

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    1. Restoring order to the garden is on the to do list but there never seems enough time!

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  13. Just a quick reply to say I read it. I am interested in the books you read and always intend to follow up one day but haven't got the chance at the moment. One day :)

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  14. We were away Thursday to Monday - a rare long weekend for us, as husband was on a course in St Andrews. It's a long way to go from here but it was beautiful weather and I actually left him to it and drove further north to Pitlochry for the day. Perfect time of year with the leaves turning on the trees.
    We usually try to make a 'weekend' during the week as husband used to work Sat and Sun and have Mon and Tues off. Places tend to be a bit quieter. It stops every day feeling the same.
    Hadn't come across that William Boyd, will look out for it. Have you read any Jonathon Coe, I always think it's similar to WB but funnier but that could be just me!

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    1. Sounds like a lovely weekend away... even further to St Andrews from here but we always try to go if we're up in Dundee. I'll have to keep a look out for Jonathon Coe.

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  15. Hello lovely Gina. Always love your posts. I can't imagine that you could offend anyone. Your walks look amazing and I always love walking new territory especially giving doggy chance of new smells! Such a glorious day today. Good luck with cafe job, i'm sure you will be loved and cherished by customers and staff alike. Liz x

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    1. Thank you Liz. Beautiful here today too although it was misty on my walk this morning. Hoping to get out to tidy up in the garden later. I think the cafe job will be challenging for these old bones on their feet all day but I like meeting the customers and needs must! Xx

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  16. We've had some beautiful autumnal weather lately- perfect for a country walk. The cafe does indeed look very pretty. All those plants - are they real?!

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    1. They are real! And many of them are for sale too. Fortunately I have not let on my awful track record for killing off houseplants!

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  17. Perhaps you should give Crocs a try, they are very forgiving on the feet. I do hope that the job doesn't always tire you but five hours straight sounds a lot, did you get a break? Good luck anyway. xx

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    1. Unfortunately no break... right over lunchtime too! I used to have Crocs but the dog chewed them!

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  18. Creating the latte art definitely counts for your 60 by 60. Combination of being on your feet, and being nice to ... people - would wipe me out.
    (And yes, I did read your book post)

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    1. It was a little less exhausting this week Diana so I guess you do get used to it!

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