Nice sunset view as we pass over London, England, on our way to Albania.
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Shkodra, Albania.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Hiking the Peaks of the Balkans, June 13-24!

Tuesday, May 28, 2024

England has so many scenic walking areas!

It was another wet drizzly morning, however the forecast called for clearing around lunchtime, and that's exactly what happened. 

We made a plan to have lunch, and then head forty minutes north toward the town of Arnside where there are a couple of National Trust properties with a lot of walking trails.

Monday, May 27, 2024

I came across an eSIM data plan that never expires!

When we were in Turkiye for most of the month of April, I had bought an eSIM for the phone. This was my first experience using an eSIM.

Usually we stop in and pick up a local SIM card for whatever country we happen to be traveling to. It's not as convenient as an eSIM, but its often quite a bit cheaper.

Sunday, May 26, 2024

Fantastic hike in Lake District National Park

We woke up Saturday morning, and we were happy to see the sunshine through the bedroom curtains. We planned to meet up with friends David and Mirsie in Lake District National Park, so to have nice weather would make for a perfect day!

We hit the road at 7:45am for the hour and fifteen minute drive to the village of Coniston located in Lake District National Park.

Saturday, May 25, 2024

These boots are made for walking...

We packed a lunch and set off to the Forest of Bowland National Landscape about 40 minutes drive east of Preston. 

Still overcast and misty even though there was no actual rain in the forecast. High of 12C (54F).

Friday, May 24, 2024

The rain finally slowed down enough to get out for some exercise

Another wet cold miserable day yesterday here in northwest England. We stayed inside until the rain slowed down after lunch, but the unappealing weather doesn't change the fact that we're trying to be in shape for our upcoming 10 day Albania hike.

So we bundled up and set out on an 8 km (5 mile) urban hike leaving directly from our doorstep here in Preston.

Thursday, May 23, 2024

Wandering around Liverpool, and new hiking boots!

We were up just before 5:00am Wednesday morning to take Jane down to Liverpool airport. It was about an hour drive, mostly on the motorway. Of course the highway is not very busy at that hour, and with sunrise in this area at 5:00am it was already light outside.

Arrived at the airport to find they have an odd way of dropping off and picking up people. You have to pay £5 for "express" drop off at the terminal where you have five minutes to say goodbye or you pay another £5!

Easy tips for hiking on a budget

Hiking is an activity that is typically very affordable as it’s very accessible. For the most simple hikes, all you need is a basic set of equipment and then you can simply start walking through the terrain and set off on your adventure - then, as you begin having bigger budgets to play with, you can look into hiking holidays, which are based over a few days or weeks (depending on the duration you would like to do). 

Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Cat sitting, but that doesn't mean we'll be sitting still!

We did the last bit of our drive from the Dairy Farm to Preston yesterday. 

Arrived in Preston around 3:00pm, and stopped in at a Lidl grocery store to pick up a few things we knew we would use, of course not knowing what our host Jane might have in the fridge that might need using up. 

Tuesday, May 21, 2024

We sure put on the steps!

The step counter on the phone read 24,365 by the end of the day.

We had checked out of our room but left our bags in the storage area so that we could make our way to pick up our car rental on the other side of Birmingham. Then, I found a little breakfast and lunch restaurant in a nearby industrial area. That turned out to be a great choice!

Monday, May 20, 2024

On the road again!

We had an enjoyable couple of weeks with Helen and Tony. Thank you both for having us. Always lots of laughs when we get together, and we look forward to the next time. Hopefully this coming November in Mexico!

We got packed up and our ride arrived at just after 6:00pm. Tony's Uncle John had come down for the wedding, and they live north of Birmingham so were able to drop us here on their way home. 

Sunday, May 19, 2024

And then the skies opened up...

Other than feeling a little tired this morning, we all survived wedding day. We had arrived at the venue yesterday around noon, and had an hour and a half or so to get ourselves cleaned up and into our fancy dress clothes.

Obviously Ruth and I don't carry around fancy dress clothes! However, when we went to the wedding in Ireland last year,  we had Max the motorhome with us and we were able to transport our clothes to Helen and Tony's where they were stored until we needed them yesterday.

Saturday, May 18, 2024

Steaks on the grill

So, we've decided to keep the rental car as we had it arranged with pickup in Birmingham on Monday. We probably would have saved a few dollars by taking our house sitting host up on her offer of letting us use her car for next week, however the logistics became difficult. 

Anyway, we decided that the extra cost was worth the extra convenience. 

Friday, May 17, 2024

Getting ready for the wedding

We have a car rental booked for this coming Monday in Birmingham, but yesterday evening I received a note from our house sitting host that she has an older car we can use if we want to. Which is very nice of her!

And I can cancel our car rental at no charge, but before I do that I need to check out just how much we'll save to see if it's worthwhile. 

Thursday, May 16, 2024

Nice day trip down to Wareham, Dorset

We packed a lunch and set off for an hour drive towards the riverside town of Wareham, Dorset. But along the way we stopped in at the village of Moreton. Helen and Tony knew of an interesting little church in the village.

Moreton is also the resting place of  Lawrence of Arabia!

Wednesday, May 15, 2024

House sitting booked, and a preview of next month's adventure!

I mentioned the other day that we had applied for a house sit up in Preston, England and we found out that we were accepted. So we'll be looking after Stripey the cat for 8 days from May 21st to the 29th.

We're also renting a car, but we don't pick it up until we get to Birmingham on the 20th. It looks like we may be getting a ride up there from one of the other wedding guests. With a car rental, we'll be able to do lots of day trips from Preston, including some time in Lake District National Park which is about an hour north of Preston.