When it snowed it was very pretty … but awfully cold!

Our local car dealer is Aston Martin! And there is a Porsche shop, as well as a Bentley place…so you can imagine what the frock shops are like!! No shopping for me here!

Wilmslow is a fairly posh neighbourhood (we didn’t know that when we applied – it was just close to Louise and Tim!). We have been able to catch the train or the bus to explore locally and also to head up to Manchester, although we were snowed in one day, and it has been so cold that it has taken days for the snow to melt, making walking a bit treacherous ⛄

We spent the first day here with a walk up to the local supermarket to get our supplies and a bit of noesy around. I also went for a walk along the river that runs close to where we are staying. I met lots of dog owners and almost wished that we had a dog on this ‘assignment’ until I saw how muddy they all were! Nope, Benson the cat is fine for the cold and the wet, and she is such a fun kitty-cat. She just loves cuddles and playing … especially as I sit down to catch up on my blog!! Seems the iPad is a magnet 😁

On the Saturday Colin and I went and helped with the Care UK charity container pack. It was great to be able to help with this and sort more donated items for the next one [container]. We met lots of lovely people and someone who had recently been to New Zealand. It is always great when people have had such a lovely time in our home country. Afterwards we headed out for a pub lunch and then spent a lovely afternoon with Louise and Tim – they are not sick of us yet 😊

Colin thought it might be a great idea to get a car here in the UK, then we could take it to Ireland and Europe. We found a car online and headed into Manchester for a look. The one [car] that was on the ‘www’ had been sold, but he saw another car buried in the back corner under a pile of leaves, with flat tyres, flat battery, covered in moss and mould, BUT it was a Toyota! After chatting to the man, getting it started [it sounded good have been sat for 7 months] he said “yip, I’ll have it”. It was agreed that we would pick it up the following week once they have got it two new tyres and a MOT check and done a valet!!

We then started on the insurance process!! OMG – it is almost impossible. After many online enquiries, visits to two brokers [online enquiries won’t accept NZ Licence numbers, or no fixed abode, or no phone]. Finally after a day out in Knutsford we found another broker who was able to secure us insurance …. just need the car now! So we hadn’t heard from the car people as promised – so Colin is now chasing them, but they finally fess up that the mighty Toyota Motor has too much chassis rust! So back to not having a car! Anyway, after all that we have decided to hire a car in Ireland (next destination) and see how we get on without it when we get to Europe! All in all it was the most frustrating experience … and to boot the insurance was going to be NZ$1600 for a NZ$1000 car!!

On another day out in Manchester we visited the John Rylands Library [is sometimes confused as a church as the building is in a similar style] which is now part of the University of Manchester. It was opened in circa 1900, and is a beautiful building with the most incredible neo-Gothic architecture and a expansive book collection, some dating back centuries ago. It also has these most beautiful stained glass windows and decorative ornaments and statues.

After visiting the library, we just wandered around the city, checking out the canals and all the amazing street art and fitted in a visit to the mighty Cathedral.

We have also visited Knutsford which is a gorgeous village a short (45 minutes) bus ride from us. Knutsford, like Wilmslow is premium property with plenty of footballers and actors. We visited the heritage centre and saw the incredible tapestry, walked through Tatton Park (unfortunately the house wasn’t open), had lunch in a grand pub before catching our bus ‘home’. Actually we visited a insurance broker first, who very kindly sorted our insurance … and you know the rest!!!

Part of the Knutsford Tapestry…a really interesting ‘snapshot’ of the town for the new millennium. Every child who was at school in 1997-1999 put at least one stitch in it. It is 40 ft long and has lots of interesting stories ‘woven’ into it.

King Canut pebble mural.

We also went out with our lovely friends Louise and Tim for a beer at a local [The Oak Tree, in Alderley Edge]. I am loving having friends close by (well 30 min drive for them!), and being able to pop out to the local. Those of you who know us, will know that we are reasonably social😍

So that’s us for now. Benson the cat has been great, such a fun cat who always just wants to play, is always nicking my pens, or trying to nick my necklace!! She is one of the reasons that I have gotten so behind with my musings!! When I am writing or planning, she is there ‘helping’!! And she is the reason we are here, so love and cuddles first 😻

Cheshire / Greater Manchester has been great, and we have a few more things to see and do before we move on.

This memorial is outside Manchester Piccadilly station – it is a tribute to all the soldiers who returned home from the war blind 😢

So until next time, take care.

“Life is short … do stuff that matters”

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