Saturday, 13 July 2013

Southend Rock and more

We decided to pop out today to the seaside again. There isn't much choice when you don't have a car so we paid the £9.80 each for return tickets to Southend Central and we got there around 10am. We treated ourselves to a Greg's pasty and cuppa and sat outside to eat them with the company of a few character like pigeons. One we called hop a long because he had a dodgy foot and the others were just greedy sods! We strolled around to find a bank atm machine and Frank noticed a sign for a train station called Southend Victoria. We walked down an alley between shops and there it was, an old station that links you to London and we found that it goes to Romford too (handy to know this). We went back to the high street and carried on walking down towards the slope where the beach is and popped in a few shops. There was a crowd forming outside Marks & Spencers and we noticed a statue in gold. Well, he was flipping brilliant. Frightened the crap out of me, it was a HE. He was shaking peoples hands, giving them a sweet and generally being quite entertaining. Wish I had taken a photo of him now! We got to the slope that takes you down towards the coast and there was the usual screaming coming from Adventure Island. We watched some of the roller coaster's going by, well I should say down, straight down and felt a twinge of sickness cause you would never get me on them. We carried on walking along the parade and bought an ice cream and some sweet treats to bring home. I remembered in the week at work a colleague came into work with a lovely dress on and I said she looks like a stick of rock and I saw the exact same colours of a Southend Stick of Rock so I bought it for her and will let her enjoy it.
We then stood and watched the water jets squirt high up and kids running through it screaming and then enjoyed an ice cream whilst walking along. It is rather noisy there which is fine, there's nothing wrong with hearing kids enjoying themselves. We carried on walking and it was around mid day and I said lets get the train up the pier and walk back. It is not cheap, it cost £3.50 each for a ride and walk fare and it does go towards the upkeep of the pier. The train was brilliant, I thought it was still the old red train that you could not stand up in with old wooden seats and chipped paintwork. Nope, it is still a small train but it's got a reasonable height to it with uncomfortable seats and electric sliding doors. The train is a diesel and I took some photos of it for you here and the funny thing is, when we walked back there was grid lock. Frank said that the rail line had to be changed for one another to pass so we were standing there waiting for it to be done from the signal box at the begining of the pier and alas, no. The poor driver had to get out with his 'bar' and manually change the track line.
I remember the end of the pier as having small huts with bucket and spade shops and a the best fish and chip shop going but nope, that as all burnt down years ago due to vandalism. They have done the best they can and it has been modernised. At the very end is this monstrosity,
It houses a small pricey cafe that has some dodgy steps. I know my eyesight is deteriorating lately what with working on computer all day but some of the steps going down from the seating area is dodgy, you can't see where they begin and where they end. I just kept thinking 'some pensioner or child is going to fall down these'. To the other side of the big building is the RNLI (Royal National Lifeboat Institute) which patrols the area. Then down the side of it is where you will find some fishermen and a few hard uncomfortable seats to take in the view. It is much quieter at the end of the pier and I do prefer that because when you live in a town of traffic, sirens and commuting, it's just awesome to take in the sounds of the sea and the gulls.
The third photo is a view from the end looking down the pier towards the coastline. It was quite a pleasant time and took about 15 minutes to walk back. We ended up going into a posh restaurant for fish and chips and then walked up some steep stairs to get back to the high street. We popped into Clark's Shoes and Frank bought me a lovely pair of black wide fit shoes and I treated myself to a pair of cream shoes. We then got the train back to Dagenham and by then, it was 4pm. We were knackered, gone brown with the sun and ready for a nap. That nap ended up being 2 hours and I woke up feeling a little worse for wear. A cuppa soon put that right and now it's almost 9pm and it's getting dark and a bit cooler. We are suppose to have a thunder storm and I hope we do, I love storms to clear the air. Hope you liked our day out and am now going to enjoy some more crochet. Have got our eye tests tomorrow morning so a bit of jogging first thing and then a relaxing day. Take care..

Sunday, 7 July 2013

Sunday afternoon

It's been a busy couple of weeks as per the norm. Tammie is doing ok although she doesn't care for this humid weather, much like myself. We went to Shoeburyness last Saturday and had a walk around and ended up on a beautiful grass area with loads of tables for picnic's. Tammie was running around like she had escaped from prison and after an hour we sat down for a drink and a snack. The view of the sea alone is just so relaxing and the quiet, just brilliant. We took off for a walk to see what there was a bit further down and unfortunately that is as far as we got, Tammie started having a 'fit' and worry and panic set in. We held her for a while till it went off and carried her back to the train station. I rang the vet and they said to take her there so we managed to get to Romford within 2 hours and by then, Tammie was back to her normal self. I have had to succumb to the fact that she will get these occurrences now and then and have just got to not panic and just comfort her. The vet said when a dog comes out from a fit they don't remember it and because she only has one now and then, to just go with it and if she takes ages to come out of it, use the Diazepam to help her. I had a pretty normal week at work stuck in my office which I call 'The Pit' because there are no windows and lots of electrical equipment. I have a fan up on the wall behind me which helps but it does get pretty warm in there and sometimes, even opressive. But, am thankful that I have a job and do enjoy it. I
My knitting has been really enjoyable lately, I started a shawl by Laura Linneman from The Knit Girllls, it's her own design and it was quite easy to knit. I used 4mm needles and in the end I did 6 pattern repeats and 300 stitches. I used 3 balls of Rowan Panama and I actually finished it last night whilst sitting in the garden at 8pm when it's nice and cool. I measured it before I soaked and blocked it and it was 51.5 inches wingspan and then when I blocked it it measured 59 inches wingspan. I am hoping to wear it like a shrug at times in the Autumn, we will see. I have now started another project which I call Target 60. It's using up my acrylic yarn, mainly King Cole DK and making 60 crochet blocks from Jan Eaton's book that I have. I intend to do solid colours and then do a fancy lace, join as you go design in between and around the edges. I would love to get a whole load of blanket's made and call them my 'stash' instead of yarn. Will keep it posted on here as I do them. I also keep thinking about writing my crochet pattern for the round blanket I designed, just got to find the time to do it. Maybe when I retire! That's it for now, not much happening really. Got some annual leave booked at the end of August which I am looking forward, just got to book a dog sitter for a few days and we are hoping to take Tammie with us for a weekend away but the price of just train fares is just ridiculous. Won't let that stop us though! I will leave you with some photo's of my gorgeous hanging baskets...