Well its the first day of 2016 and I feel that I should recap on the last twelve months.
One year ago today we awoke in Pismo Beach on California’s pacific coast having spent new years eve driving up the Big Sur coastal highway, stopping to watch shoals of whales make their way to who knows where and later to watch the final sunset of the year disappear below the horizon.
Looking back, that alone should be sufficient for a reasonable person to regard themselves fortunate, but for Jane and I this was just to seem like the hors d’oeuvres for the feast of activity that was to lay ahead.
We have already described the amazing things and people we encountered travelling throughout Asia before returning to Norfolk (with some cultural decompression/reorientation in lovely Italy and surprising Poland). One thing that we may have not shared on the blog at the time was that we decided to set a wedding date and thanks to the wonders of the internet were able to book the service on line from Japan.
June found us back in Norwich standing in the dining room of Jane’s house, still stripped bare of our possessions as we had left it eight months earlier. When away we had talked about and planned the things we could do to the house “to make it ours”, in the event Jane turned to me and said, shall we just sell it and buy one together? That’s just what we did and I’m writing this sitting on the sofa in our nice little home. As readers, friends and acquaintance are well aware, I’m not averse to the odd four letter word, but Work is a particularly pernicious one that reared its head almost immediately. Again good fortune prevailed, Jane was able to pick up another summer contract teaching at the UEA and I dropped on a project surveyor contract in King’s Lynn, 50 miles up the road.
With our house move happening at the beginning of September and wedding in November we were kept fairly busy and I know this probably sounds a bit pathetic but we were ready for a holiday/honeymoon when all the contracts had been signed and we were matrimonially homed!
The lovely little island of Madeira was our destination, a lump of volcanic rock that popped out of the Atlantic 850,000 years ago. Inhabited since the 1600’s after some Portuguese sailors discovered it after they were blown off course. The island is fertile, has abundant water and year round clement temperatures, a pocket sized Eden. We rented a fantastic apartment in the capital Funchal. The owner, Carlos had provided everything we could possibly need and some, a very special experience.
On our return, we just had a two week run in to the December holiday. We had a nice, though low key Christmas and celebrated the new year in style. My W**k contract ended in December but fortunately I have picked up a new one for January, it means I’ll have to be away a couple of nights a week, but its a fucking job!
So what lies ahead for us in 2016, who knows? We have agreed that cutting out the flying would do no harm, so we are going to explore our own little island this year. We want to do some things to make our house into our home and hopefully some of the great folks that we met on our travels will come and share our hospitality. But plans are just a starting point, what actually happens will remain a wonderful mystery, till it happens☺