Monday 2 January 2023

2022 Round up: Places

After two years of having to think every trip through carefully, attending untold numbers of events online instead of in person and cooling my heels on holidays in Britain (I would call this a staycation but I don't want to excite any pedants so will not), 2022 was the year I finally felt like there could be time around and about the place. And, true to form, I managed to get away somewhere at least overnight in every month of the year. I visited all four parts of the United Kingdom. I camped in a new palatial tent that has its own front room. I went skiing again for the first time in two years and I hadn't forgotten how to ski, thankfully. I went to two teaching conferences. Only two planned trips were cancelled - a skiing inspection visit at Easter that was called off due to the P&O palaver; and the camping weekend I had planned in Snowdonia, when I realised nobody else was likely to be coming with me. Not too bad at all, considering the past couple of years. 

(While I am a lover of a selfie, as we all know, I have made a conscious choice to share mainly pictures of just me in this post, where possible, as some people prefer not to be pasted too liberally all over the internet, I mean you Mr Z). 


A little Belfast weekend to see my friend Naomi and meet her new baby, Bethan. Here I am in the museum with an actual cannon from the Spanish Armada.


Finally ditched British shores and headed to France for some much longed-for skiing, in Les Carroz. 


A night and day in Tamworth to update my ski qualification.

A weekend in Manchester for a teaching conference.


A weekend in Portsmouth. 

A couple of days in the Gower, instead of what should have been a second week of skiing. 

A quick visit to London to get a hair cut and catch up with the fam.

Wonderwool weekend in Wales, incorporating a wander around the Four Waterfalls walk. 


A minibreak to a lovely spa hotel in Bucks, so Mother Hand and I could visit Bletchley Park. 


A weekend in Scotland to visit Jen and fam.

A very quick trip to London to see Six at Hampton Court - original cast, just awesome.

Several nights in Birmingham for exam board meetings - both good to be back and frustrating to be back, particularly since this coincided with the rail strikes. I surprised myself by choosing the gym over breakfast after the first day, I'd forgotten what it's like stopping in a hotel, they did not stop feeding us. 


A weekend in the Gower with Rachael and Alex.


The big Iberian road trip: we caught the ferry from Portsmouth to Santander, staying there a few days, then on to Oviedo via Gijon, then a few days in A Coruna with day trips to Santiago de Compostela, Lugo and Ourense, then on to Vigo where we left the hire car, catching the train to Porto for our last few days. Great fun exploring, my favourite part being the As Catedrais or Cathedral Beach, which we made it to for sunrise and low tide. Just awesome. 

On my return, I hopped off to Croyde for a couple of nights' camping in my new tent (bought for a jaunt to Snowdonia earlier in the year that didn't go ahead in the end).

Then Portsmouth. This was not a pleasurable trip as it ended with me dropping Mother Hand off at hospital, where she remained until November. 


Portsmouth, twice. Thanks goodness for the beach, where I went for swimming after most hospital visits. I even saw a seal in the water one evening - a first for me. 


Portsmouth. I was able to bring Mother Hand home for an afternoon.

London, for a hair cut and a niece catch up.

Scotland with Mr Z for our first holiday since 2019. We stayed at a glorious hotel on Loch Ness; this is from the coast near Inverness.

Portsmouth, again. I spent the weekend at home with Mother Hand, ahead of her coming home permanently, phew. 


A weekend in Oxford for an education conference.


Portsmouth for Mother Hand's birthday. 

London for a couple of days betwixtmas, for family catch ups.

Fingers crossed for Costa Rica in 2023...

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