A brief stopover in Warwick and Leamington Spa...
We needed to be just the other side of Warwick/Leamington Spa by last Friday because we had an appointment to get the bongo MOT'd. Deb had found a guy who 'arranged' MOT's but was also experienced in the little idiosyncrasies of the breed. So we knew if anything was wrong it would be in safe (ish) hands. The guy also works on a mobile basis so could be handy in the future.
Problem was that I would have wanted to spend more time in these two interlinked towns. We had discussed coming back this way late winter next year as its only a few days away from where we intend getting iced in over winter (or hour or so by bongo!) The only issue is that Warwick lies south of the canal main line, so its a good mile or so round trip to town, and the canal continues to the Old Leamington Spa area which should be pretty and quaint but well, it ain't. The moorings were OK but of the 10ish boats there 3 were hire boats with a group of lads (hooray Henry types) who we nearly bumped into a few days later as two of the three boats decide traveling in tandem is boring and decided to go everywhere breasted up with both engines running and two steerers. The rest of the boats, well I'd describe the average age of the boats to be over 30 years old, the average boater about 30 as well and all blokes, they kept themselves to themselves but the big group of hippy hutches kinda scene is one I'm keen to steer clear of.
The boat directly behind was quite well looked after and lived on by three brothers who had all hit trouble at the same time. One was going through a messy divorce, one lost yet another job and one had a vertebral artery occlusion that resulted in a stroke, the same as I suffered just before Christmas last year. Sadly he wasn't one of the sufferers who made a swift and full recovery. He is walking with a stick now but having difficulty with his speech and will only speak to his brothers and never in front of strangers. It happened to a friend of a colleague a week or so before me in December whilst he was at the gym.Whilst I was out of hospital on the road to recovery back to work and driving again this young lad was still learning how to walk. Two of the unlucky 25%. If we do come back early next year we will probably pay to stay in the Saltisford arm which we passed through last year.
Whilst in Warwick though we did manage to track down an old former maternity home. Actually it was a nursing home then maternity home and now a nursery (and probably a few other things along the away). It was here that my mum was born just over 70 years ago. I think the story was that whilst grandad was on active service nan got evacuated to Warwick to have the baby (maybe wrong there so expected an edit)