Hello to all you fellow motorhomers and welcome.
I hope you get as much fun reading this as I do writing it.

Friday, 26 May 2017

All Sorted

Well the camera repair shop were wonderful. They had mended the lens in 5 days; quick but not cheap.  So it was they phoned on Friday afternoon and informed me it was ready for collection. Unfortunately I was unable to get to the shop until Monday.

This did not really matter as just knowing my camera was now in working order meant I could plan my next research  expedition. Checking my diary and campsites I managed to book 5 nights at Graffham Camping and Caravanning Club site from the bank holiday Monday. I just hope the weather is as good as it has been the past couple of days.

At least the couple of weeks I have been home has allowed me catch up with people and events as well as work on my book.

I have thoroughly enjoyed visiting the campsites and each one has been an interesting experience.  I am looking forward to going to Graffham. I have in fact been there before. Many years ago when I first got the motorhome.

Already I have encountered one problem with the campsite. It is finding the necessary OS Explorer
Map. Firstly it appears that OS are redoing the Explorer Maps in that area so the old ones are no longer available. Then the new ones have the campsite right on the corner. In order to see the area and make some kind of decision about the possible walks means I will need at the very least 4 maps. I decided to have a custom made one with the campsite right in the middle. I did not want any extras so was unsure what to choose. In the end I kept it simple. The title was straightforward "Graffham Campsite - South Downs" and for the picture I chose the one that was instrumental in my  writing the articles for the magazine and then the book.

Surprisingly the price of the custom made OS Explorer Map was much cheaper than I expected £16.50. Definitely cheaper and easier than having 4 ordinary Explorer Maps. It looks fabulous.

Tuesday, 16 May 2017


Things were going so well. After my wonderful time at Easthope campsite I returned home to take part in the annual Scarecrow Trail.

 This year for the first time I decided to make a scarecrow. I have to say the idea for my scarecrow was suggested by a friend.

The theme this year was the "letter S" so all the scarecrows had to start with S.
What did I make?
As you can see from the photo, my scarecrow was all white with a halo (it was suppose to be a saint rather than an angel as there were no wings).
The saint was holding a dog's lead which was attached to a beer barrel. The clue I submitted to the organizers was
"My home is in the Alps".                    Can you guess my scarecrow's title?

St Bernard Dog.

As the weather app predicted fair weather I decided I ought to go to another campsite.  I want visit them all and do the walks by the end of the season in October. I don't want to do too many in the expensive summer holidays and the one in Scotland I am proposing to do is quite far north. This will not only take some planning but also will take a considerable amount of time.

I decided to go to the National Trust campsite at Ilam in Derbyshire, or to be precise on the Derbyshire/Staffordshire border.  A very unusual site (I'm not going to write about it here in any detail. I'm going to save time and effort for the book). Just to say once I got use to the campsite it was a nice place to stay. There were lots of walks for Pearl and a place for her to have a swim.

The downside was all the sheep and lambs in the fields. Much of the time I had Pearl on a lead just in case we met some sheep. So free hands were free for taking notes and photos I hooked the extending lead through some straps on my backpack. On one occasion Pearl even got chased by a sheep. It was a wonderful outing for us both.

So you are wondering what it the Catastrophe?  On Thursday early evening when I was almost back at the campsite having finalized the short walk after two other attempts my camera mal-functioned. An error message came on the LCD screen informing me I needed to clean the lens contacts. I could do nothing about this "out in the field" so put my camera away. Back at the van I looked at the lens; did some cleaning; tried taking photos but all to no avail. No matter what I did the error message kept popping up.

There was no point going to another campsite if I could not take any photos. There was really no choice but to return home and get to the camera to the repair shop asap. Monday I was straight up there. Not good news.

Apart from the cost, (nothing to do with cameras is ever cheap), it will be at least a week possibly longer before it is mended. It all depends how long it takes for the part to arrive. So I cannot go anywhere in the immediate future. Just as well that for the next week rain is forecast.

Unable to make any plans until my camera is fixed.