On A Clear Day

We were returning earlier than necessary for Shane’s next treatment, as we were assisting with Nye’s house move out of Marple, the week before. We had arranged to collect a large van in Stockport to help flit Nye and David back to Edinburgh so a train to Stockport (well 2 trains) then a one way hire to Edinburgh was the plan. On the way Nye asked if we could fit in a trip to the dump before packing the stuff they wanted to keep. Their flat had been unfurnished but the new tenant had said he would like furniture. Now he had dropped out the estate agents, that morning, said the flat needed to be completely empty so tables and chairs , a sofa, bookshelves, a king size bed and more,  that they planned to leave, now had to be moved out. It was enough to fill the van! It was also pouring rain as we filled it up. A little fun was had playing with the tail lift. There was no lift to get all the stuff down the stairs.

Then the recycle centre said they had not received the required bar code (recycling needs a bar code now?) So a bit of flapping and phoning before that was sorted out. Not everyone fits in the van and someone had to go back to Edinburgh by train, so while they were at the dump I investigated trains. David had tried and not managed to make a booking the day before. I decided (not selflessly at all) that I was the least strong and was happy to travel by train so  Nye showed me to the station in Marple in the dark, a nice route under the old bridge and along the canal. I left the chaps filling the van a second time, hoping to leave a completely clear flat and fit it all in. 

Manchester station has a different departure board from most stations and a large shopping area. There were two pianos and I heard 3 different pianists before my Edinburgh train was showing. It already had an airport feel with the shops and large open area, but it was even more so when I headed to the platform to find it had a holding lounge while it showed which passengers could go through to their platforms in a colour coded signage wait  prepare go.  

Manchester Station…getting ready for international travel

My journey was comfortable and on time and I was first back and was pleased to have some clear quiet time to chat to Bryn while we waited. They arrived after midnight and we unloaded Nye’s furniture and boxes and Bryn volunteered to go over to David’s to help carry his boxes and furniture up his stairs, while Nye and I arranged all the boxes and furniture around the already full flat, so the hall and living room were clear. It didn’t look like that would work but it did. Shane was shattered by the time he arrived back after 2am and it was a late night. We were a bit zombified the next day. I had clearly made the best (for me) decision taking the train.

I had recovered by the time of my planned night out at the cinema to see Glass Onion. I promptly wrecked my body clock again by having an espresso martini afterwards. The combination of an enjoyable stimulating evening and caffeine meant I was awake until well after 5am. We had our vaccination appointments the next day and I was afraid of falling back asleep after Shane got up so rose promptly myself even though my appointment was over an hour after his. He was back before I left.

I was glad not to be feeling too groggy and the staff were all cheerful despite an essentially dull repetitive job. While I was in the queue, a man arrived with a bike and leaned it inside the centre and went to speak. I knew Shane had locked his outside when he’d gone. He went to speak to the masked staff in their uniforms and then I heard the lady say “ah no, this is the vaccination centre not a post office. I’ll show you where it is!” The man went to get his bike while she walked around the desk and now I noticed he had a large box on his bike. It probably brightened up her morning to get out of her seat. I don’t think the logos and colour scheme shout post office but perhaps the “happy to help” poster made him go in to ask. I thought this centre was particularly clearly signposted, compared to other vaccination centres I have visited!

Clearly marked – would you post your parcel here?

With an early night and restful day we have bounced back from the double vaccination and today Shane had an early blood test appointment and had a lovely sight as the sun shone across the Meadows. You could be forgiven to think this was Africa not a Scottish winter. The spire and morning mist might give it away.

Born Free in Scotland Sunlight

Meanwhile I went to see my sister and go for a walk. It was frosty still but when we went on a hill walk we saw sparkling droplets and we’re lucky to be above the clouds and in the sun. Corstophine Hill was also poking out above the cloud. It cleared a little as we drank our flask of coffee and with no wind, we didn’t even get cold sitting still on top of a hill – a rare event in Scotland on St Andrew’s Day.

Approaching the top of Wester Craiglockhart hill looking across to Corstorphine hill
Sitting at the top watching the cloud below us on Wester Craiglockhart Hill
Cloud dispersed and a striped sky from Wester Craiglockhart Hill

When I got back Shane was pleased to have taken a photo through the window of a blue tit in the bird box. Have we yet another new resident moving in? Glad we don’t have to move their furnishings in. We will look out for them flitting.