Day 1 – 1 July

Advance party touches the great Atlantic Ocean!  But for the rest of us…..

  

Approaching our starting-point on the train was unpromising, and we made little progress with our plan to learn useful Welsh
…However: spirits were restored in our hosts’ living room, with the biggest fireplace we have ever seen.

It is raining hard this morning, strengthening our resolve to get going.  We’d love to Remain, of course, beside this gorgeous fire, but circumstances are forcing us to Leave and we’d better get on with it, if only to shed the irresistible indoor temptation to talk politics. [Those of us now named Molynx are regretting the loss of two letters].

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‘Day O(b)’ – 30 June 2016

A reminder of  what we are supporting – and huge thanks to so many of you for getting us off to a generous start, and for your kind messages.

 

    

A health centre built with community participation; and a community volunteer visiting a man with epilepsy

Back to this end: yesterday’s Day O was the End of the Beginning, today’s Day O is the Beginning of the End.  Today Peg and Christo, who reached SW Wales yesterday, will do their own training loop from Clynderwen to Marloes and back (or so they say, but we know there’s a nice cafe in Clynderwen), while the rest of us converge on Clynderwen by trains: Glynis and Ben having sailed their yacht across the Bay of Biscay (yikes!!!), and Liz and Malcolm having  returned by train from various not-quite-equally hazardous parleys in London.

Day -1 (28 June 2016)

Last day before we begin to shift to WALES.  Red at night, cyclists’ delight!
THE ITINERARY
The darker the green on this map, the more Welsh is spoken
Very approximate route.   Peg and Christo are doing the ‘Day O’ ride as a privileged training opportunity before the rest of us join them

From a brother in Sweden, today:

‘Just back from a conference with 15,000 delegates.  Visiting (English) speaker very good. He mentioned that he had some “health issues” to discuss. The (Swedish) interpreter thought he said “healthy shoes” and translated accordingly.  Sniggers in the hall, so speaker tried again with same result, and again very slowly but to no avail.  Healthy shoes they remained.   (I’ve forgotten everything else he had to say, but this bit will stay with me a long time).’

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Day -3 (26 June 2016)

(A) Nowhere to hide on Formby beach
(B)
(C)
Interesting to wonder which has the greater load:carrier weight 
ratio - the Malawian sack-carrier (B), or the lorry parked at 
a Truckers' Lodge in NW Carlisle (C). Offers on a postcard... etc

In (C), note also the different directions currently being taken 
by Western Civilization.

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Day -4 (25 June 2016)

PS – Thanks Jan Matthews for your comment that Anglesey is too far round to be seen from Crosby, and that the land visible behind the distant windmills is actually Llandudno and the Great Orme’s Head.  If you mean ‘too far round the curvature of the earth’ to be seen from Crosby, you could be right, but not if you mean ‘too far round the curvature of Wales’ – see map above.  The dotted line runs almost due west, and the window from which the picture was taken is quite high off the ground, so we still vote for that being Anglesey.
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Day -5 (24 June 2016)

Well, it seems that we (UK) have decided to break ourselves off from the great EU Chair*, since we’ll flourish better as a leg all by ourself, and the Chair…hey, that’s no concern of ours, let it take care of itself.

     

We can now get on with fun and improvised games without being told what to do all the time.
*[OK, that chair is in Geneva, not EU, but the meaning is plain - 
it's not only the left front leg that's lost out, but the Chair too].

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Day -8 (21 June 2016)

Yesterday: It seemed like an innocent canal…

  

…until a lapse of attention, a patch of mud on the path, a slithering skid, and suddenly Malcolm had disappeared, bike and all.  Both had to be hauled out.  At the next tea-shop we admitted this to the proprietress, who shrieked with laughter and said she’d been in there countless times in her youth.  Had to dry the cash out to pay her for the tea.