The Long and Winding Road

The three of us drove over to Jenny’s on a beautiful Saturday morning. After William’s success last week, we thought it would be nice to watch William and Martha swimming again. We all walked down the road to the pool  and were entertained by two young but very competent swimmers for half an hour. I feel good in a special way, I’m in love and it’s a sunny day. Walking back afterwards, we passed some really lovely gardens, well-tended and for a brief moment, I wished we still had a garden.

A host of golden daffodils

A lot of daffodils are now past their best-before date, but there are still a few bright patches here and there. Little darlin’, it’s been a long cold lonely Winter, little darlin’, it feels like years since it’s been here. It really is uplifting to be out and about in the sunshine, even if it’s not that warm. It is strange to be walking along, feeling the heat of the Sun on your back while feeling a cold wind on your face.

Later in the day, we met up with the family at Quarry Bank Mill for a quick walk. Martha and William followed the trail which entailed some fun activities such as doing star jumps and even a wheelbarrow race. Desmond has a barrow in the market place, as they say.

Wheelbarrow race

The really exciting part, though was at the end. On completion of the nine tasks, they received an Easter egg. I wish I’d picked up an instruction sheet, now. I am the egg-man, they are the egg-men, I am the walrus, goo goo g’joob.

Trip-trapping over the bridge

At this point, Martha and William were miles ahead of us so-called grown-ups. They were heading for the playground. We’d had coffee and they’d had ice-cream so the energy levels were high. I get high with a little help from my friends.

Martha up the pole

In the evening, Liesel, Leslie and I visited our local theatre to watch Northenden Players Theatre Club’s production of Ladies Down Under. It was a full house, well, the capacity is 60 I think, and the play was very well performed. She’s got a ticket to ride. The action mainly takes place near Uluru, and mention was made of staying underground at Coober Pedy, bringing back memories of my trip there in 2002. The set was very clever too, very atmospheric.

Uluru at Northenden Theatre

Its been a long time, so I paid a visit to Rose Hill Woods, one of Northenden’s best kept secrets. There’s no getting away from the hum of the motorway, but it’s a very peaceful place. Especially when there are no other people about. And I did wonder whether the proximity of the M56 and its noise was responsible for the birds seemingly singing more loudly than usual. And your bird can sing. I’d forgotten how well made the path was too.

Watkin Memorial Stone

This is a memorial to Absalom Watkin who campaigned for electoral reform and for the repeal of the corn laws. It’s amazing to think that a UK government would bring in laws that result in food shortages, huge profits for wealthy landowners along with widespread poverty. It would never happen in the 21st century, of course. Baby you’re a rich man.

Absalom’s Bridge

Liesel’s a fantastic cook and so it was, she prepared some Indian dishes which we took over to Jenny’s. Don’t worry, we had been invited, it wasn’t a case of just turning up and thrusting our food upon them. It was of course delicious. All together now, all together now. And we had a lot of fun with the children and their marble run. I suspect there are still some marbles under the sofa.

William and Martha

As we’re ‘in training’ for a long walk next month, Liesel and I wandered over to Wythenshawe Park, and walked the boundaries. This Park isn’t as hilly as the long trek we’re planning, but it’s better than nothing. The long and winding road, that leads to your door, will never disappear, I’ve seen that road before. It’s good the see the path being used by cyclists, not so good to see piles of evidence that horses also use it.

Wythenshawe Park

We stopped for coffee just before closing time and as we were leaving the park, we saw smoke over by the field with the horses. We think it was probably someone with a disposable barbecue and we suspect the evidence will still be there. Good job there are litter pickers in the park, eh? Help! You know I need someone! Help!

I joined the choir. Yes, I know I can’t sing for toffee but, ‘do something scary every day’. I met Dan last week, had a chat, he kept a straight face as he said I should come along, so I went along. There were far more people than expected, between 50 and 60, and about 10 of us tenors. I’m a tenor! Fortunately, Roger and Nick are very loud tenors and my warblings are nicely drowned out. There’s nothing you can do that can’t be done. Nothing you can sing that can’t be sung.

Sadly, here is some sad news. I’m too emotional to write my own words, so here are details straight from the source.

The old oak tree

Over 500 years old, this is the oldest oak in the Dunham Massey deer park: it even predates the historic buildings!

As you can see this special oak is starting to lean towards the moat, this is due to a variety of factors from root compaction to recent storms, as well as the sheer age of this veteran tree.

The Rangers started work in Autumn 2022, thinning some of the older, more ridged branches from the crown of the tree to reduce the sail area, working to prevent the wind from catching it as much as possible. Thinning the top branches has also helped to take some of the weight off, lessening pressure on the root system

Next, in February 2023, they installed a prop to help support the weight of the oak, as this section of the tree will get heavier as the top foliage starts to grow. Help! You know I need someone! Help!

The propped up oak tree

It was another very pleasant walk, again with cold wind in one direction and warm Sun in the other. And I say it’s alright.

Liesel, Leslie and cherry blossom
Snake’s head fritillary

Leslie, Liesel and I joined the walks on Wednesday and Thursday, warm Sun, cold wind, not as cold maybe but noticeable. I can’t measure it scientifically, but it seems to me that ever since I had Covid last year, I have noticed the cold much sooner than I used to, even the slightest of cold draughts. Pools of sorrow, waves of joy are drifting through my opened mind, possessing and caressing me.

Sale isn’t that far away, but we’ve seldom been there. We had a lunch date with some folks from the choir, and their spouses. Spouses? Spice? And all the people that come and go stop and say hello. Alanya in Sale was very nice and before we went in, we had a wander around the town. Lots of charity shops and betting shops, even a games arcade.

Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation

Liesel and I left Mom at home while we went for an early evening walk along the river. It was very pleasant, mainly because there were so few other people around! Not even on the golf course. In fact, more than pleasant. In fact, it was so warm, we took our coats off, and that’s a first for this year. I also should have worn shorts. Let’s hope for a nice, long, warm Summer. Here comes the sun king, everybody’s laughing, everybody’s happy, here comes the sun king.

Selfie of the day

That was the week leading up to Easter, so guess what the radio show was about this week? That’s right: Japan. Some Japanese music, plus songs about Japan or that mention the land of the rising Sun. If you missed the Wythenshawe Radio transmission, you can catch up here.

One major disappontment this week. One day, I went out for a walk and left the pedometer at home so there is no step count available. Not once, but twice that day. This will severely affect any statistical analysis that may ensue.

Author: mickandlieselsantics

We are a married couple, one American, one Brit, one male, one female, neither of us as fit as we would like to be, well over 100 years old altogether.

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