Tag Archives: friends

Good things and sad things

7 Aug

We still keep in touch with a lot of the people we met during our travels and had some happy news recently as we heard that Pathum, one of our friends we met in Sri Lanka, got married. We met him and his lovely family near Hikkaduwa (in this post) and again when we returned before we left Sri Lanka (here) and we are really pleased for him and his wife.


Sadly, he also let us know that his Dad, Silva, passed away before the wedding in a road accident. The danger of the roads in Sri Lanka were made light of by us for the purposes of the blog, but bus journeys and even crossing the road were genuinely scary and we are sad for him and his family that such a nice man has died in such a way. He was one of our favourite of the many characters we met along the way in Sri Lanka and we are very sorry we won’t be able to keep our promise to see him again when we return.

Also heartbreaking was the news from Cambodia the other day that our amazing puppy, Namnam, whom we rescued from the jungle (here), nursed back to health, took on a beach holiday and to restaurants and on buses halfway across Cambodia before finding a suitable expat adoptive family for him to live with in Sihanoukville, has gone missing from his home. Having seen the evidence for ourselves in various markets across SE Asia, the inescapable conclusion is that there is a high chance that he will have ended up on the table. Cambodians were urged by their government several years ago to eat more dog as a way to access cheaper meat and also to reduce the stray population, and sadly a well-loved and fed dog is often more appealing than something mangey and starved on the streets. Apparently this happens quite a lot. Having come from such a bad start, I hope the year he had with his new owners and the ridiculous amount of love and affection we showered on him whilst he was ours made up for the potentially unbearably grim ending to his story.



And relax…

8 Jan

For anyone fearing that I am enjoying my new life of leisure, I am still getting up at normal time to drop Craig off to work in Radford Semele whilst I still have my car. Although someone came to see it the day after I relisted it on Autotrader, they decided they would get back to me as they “weren’t really sure whether they were looking for an automatic”. *Sigh*.

The last few days have been a whirlwind trying to get things sorted and getting to see everyone to say goodbye. We had a couple of drinks with Ben, whom we’ve been living with for the last few months now my house is rented out, and neighbour Tony on Thursday. Music, homemade sloe gin, dancing in the living room and brandy: fun times. Less fun was the morning after so to blow away the cobwebs we took the dogs out for a walk to Bascote Woods –  and saw the result of the last few days’ battering by the wind. Got back to Craig’s parents’ house to drop Charlie Murphy off and had to take his mum to hospital as she isn’t well. In amongst all the worry came a moment of light relief courtesy of my blondeness…I am a fan of passiveagressivenotes.com which is a site dedicated to signs and notes that are unintentionally funny in their anger. When I saw this next to the double doors to go to the ward

(and the two other signs on the actual doors), I had to take a picture to submit to the site. A nurse was trying to get out with a patient in a wheelchair so I offered to hold the door open, commenting on how many signs there were. She rolled her eyes and said it still confused people…only for me to then try and open the door with the handles without pressing the switch. At least she, Craig, the patients and every other nurse in a 5 metre radius found it absolutely hilarious :)

We were meant to be seeing Joy and James in town that evening but with everything going on we texted to say we might be a bit late…only to find we were about to miss our surprise party that had been organised by James! James is someone who flat out refuses to plan anything more than 2 seconds in advance so we were very touched :) After making sure Craig’s mum was going to be discharged, we headed off into town to meet everyone as it would be our last chance to go out in Leamington to see them – it was a lovely night despite all the earlier stress so thank you to all that made it. I got to experience the wonder that is Kelsey’s bar and “The Eliminator” cocktail:

And yes, it is as luminous as it looks there!

The next day we went to see Craig’s mum again to make sure she was as ok as possible and then went off to Tim and Wendy’s the next meeting of Curry Club with Joy, Dave and Jasmine. Curry Club is the brainchild of Gemma and basically involves all or part of the group descending on one of our houses and cooking up a great big curry for everyone. Gemma and Joe did the first one in London for us and Dills – Sri Lankan curry, a stunning tarka dhall and a less successful aubergine/oil dish which ended up in the bin after Joe declared it inedible :D Craig and I did the next one with some samosas, pakoras and bhajis, three curries and indian sweets and rice pudding (and chocolate cupcakes – possibly less authentic!):

Curry Club: mobilise

Tim and Wendy did an amazing job – poppadoms, salad, dips, two curries and a perfectly cooked chocolate fondant with raspberries:

They had put in a lot of effort to making it special – including party games and the brilliant idea of doing a different flavoured shot for us all between courses. It was lovely to see them both and get to say a proper goodbye. We also got to see the best real ale shop in the entire world!

We went for a walk round Chesterton with James and the dogs this afternoon after checking in on Craig’s mum – it was meant to be a small walk but ended up being 3 hours after walking to Harbury to meet James, round Thwaites’ farm and back to Ufton. Holly hasn’t moved from her bed since: even her whiskers look tired. We then met my brother Simon and his girlfriend Crissy for a meal to say goodbye tonight at the White Horse which, aside from the total inetiptitude of the bar staff (the blank stare when we asked for our drinks was, in hindsight, a bad sign), was lovely and it was great to get a chance to say goodbye considering he lives in Maidenhead so isn’t around all the time.

In amongst all of that we’ve also sorted the post redirection, travel insurance, train tickets to London and on my part, seriously examined the possibility of packing at some point. Just got to see Vicki, Joy for our final Twilight session, James, give the dog to her new home (not thinking about that at the moment), drop the car off at Dad’s and say goodbye to him, visit Oliver – the little boy I’ve been looking after for the last three years as part of the Friendship Project for Children – and his mum, and our neighbours from our house in Rugby…let’s just say we’re looking forward to the sleep on the plane!