Tuesday, 25 December 2012

Christmas Eve

After a brief period of indecision all five of us caught the train to Reading and spent the day shopping (mostly window).  It’s the first time Jan and I have caught the train to Reading as we usually use our seniors bus pass.  The bus takes ¾ hour and the train ¼ hour.  However, for us the bus is free so there is no contest!  However the ticket collector mentioned we could purchase a group ticket where four travel for the price of two so it wasn’t quite the expensive journey we’d anticipated.

Travelling in to Reading the most noticeable thing was the amount of flooded ground around Theale.  We’ve never see so much water in this location.  Fortunately we have decided to stay where we are rather than going for a cruise, The locals tell us Waiouru is safe in the pound between Aldermaston and Padworth locks.

Reading Railway Station is in the midst of being refurbished.  The new steel, glass and aluminium structure provides a marked contrast against the original steel frame timber clad cover over the platforms.  The city didn’t appear to be very crowded although there were plenty of people shopping for last minute Christmas presents.  Dan needed a new power supply for his iPad which led us to the Apple shop in the Oracle Shopping Mall.  Debenham’s and John Lewis received a visit as one of us was looking for leather gloves.  Lunch was in a pub where three of us sampled some English ale specially brewed for Christmas (name of the beer was Hob Goblin).  I can see this English beer is an acquired taste!  Steve’s search for underwear took us to Primark where he managed to find what he wanted.  Apparently Bella (their daschund) has acquired a taste for his “jock’s” which has resulted in him having a shortage of essential clothing!

Whilst waiting for the train Dan gave me a 10 minute lesson on how to use our expensive Canon DSLR camera.  He is quite artistic and has also taken lessons on photography.  As we walked around Reading he would say “take a photo of that” and “Your photo should tell a story!”

The above photo tells the story…….. I don’t know how to take a photo Smile

I’m trying slightly harder with the Christmas tree…… but it’s still awful!

He didn’t tell me to take this photo and I personally think it’s the best of a bad bunch!  I like the second and third floor architecture  but on reflection should probably have taken a close-up.  Got to keep practicing.

It looks like we might be going to the local pub (the Butt Inn) tonight for a family dinner.

Christmas Day is the last full day with the three sons before they head off on their separate ways with two going to Sweden and one to Belgium.  They are getting back together in a fortnight for some skiing in Austria.  

Jan and I wish all those hardy souls who bother to read the blog a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.


Jenny and Robin said...

Merry Christmas both you Tom and Jan and your family from two Kiwis having Christmas in their Caravan at Carterton in the Wairarapa NZ

Steve said...

Merry Christmas and a Happy new Year to you both. Thank you for your blog, it has given us a lot of thought for our boat AmyJo. We thoroughly enjoy reading the blog and look forward to reading Waiouru's exploits with eager anticipation.

We sincerely hope you have a great time on Waiouru in the coming years. After what you have both been through you truly deserve happy and trouble free cruising.
Steve and Chris