First popped into GP to pick up a repeat prescription which whilst packing I found I needed.
Then onto the Dentist for a tooth clean.
Then I called in on Barnitts to get a padlock for the garage as the old one has started playing up, and I bought a squirrel trap too, which traps larger animals alive so if it's the wrong animal (a hedgehog, say) it can be released, and if it's vermin, drowned, which seems the quickest way to dispatch a live-caught rat or squirrel. I prefer using rat traps with the instant spring action for rats, but on a couple of occasions I've caught a bird or a frog, so they have to be very carefully placed. And this wouldn't catch a walnut-eating grey squirrel. So the live trap will be put into use when we get back. I'm determined to protect our nut harvest from these cute but non-native 'tree rats with bushy tails'.
Then home to pick beans, courgettes, tromboncino squash and tomatoes to take with us, although I gave a courgette to Debbie over the road too.
Gill and the boys were picked up in a taxi at 12.15 and I left the house 5 minutes later by bike. I cycled over to the GP surgery and picked up my prescription and then over to the station where the family were waiting for me... but there was also a steam locomotive in with a very long carriage set bound for Scraborough. I scooted over the bridge to see the loco, and was delighted to see it was my favourite steam locomotive, the Leander. Back in the 1980s, possibly 82 or 83, my Uncle Robert bought me a really lovely present... a trip behind the Leander, which took us from Guide Bridge near Manchester, over to York, then to Leeds, Settle, Carlisle and dropped us at Carnforth where we got an electric loco-hauled rain back to Nuneaton and then a Diesel Multiple Unit back to Leicester, which is where I lived at the time. I've never forgotten this trip. I'm not a train spotter now but am still an enthusiast as train travel is quick, comfortable, usually more eco friendly than bus or car and I always seem to have good conversations in trains.
However, when our 12.58 came in, we got on and looked for our seats, but before we got to them there was an announcement that the train had been cancelled as there was vandalism in the Leeds area. So we got the next one, 30 minutes later, and had our lunch whilst waiting.
The train journey from here onwards was very straightforward, just a detour around the cable theft area, and got into Manchester at about 3pm. Our Shrewsbury train was at 3.30 and we got into there at 4.50, got a taxi to Sophie and Danky's house. Lovely to see them.... I'm an uncle to them, despite being a similar age. and their three lovely children, a similar age to our two, I'm a Great Uncle to!!! (well, this is what they say, haha).