Saturday, 29 August 2015

#MiniBreeze and the scooters

#MiniBreeze is disappointed about not going on holiday, but what happened yesterday made up for it, if we had been in the US, as planned, he would have missed this.  Yesterday #MiniBreeze kept on hearing an unfamiliar noise outside, almost like a sewing machine, it came and went all day.  As it was sunny, he decided to take a walk and investigate.

As he got near to the seafront he saw a bigger crowd than usual, so he decided this was worth looking at.

He saw scooters on the grass.  This was a clue!!  #MiniBreeze had come across the Annual Isle of Wight Scooter Rally.  This is a big event in the island's calendar, every August Bank Holiday weekend.  This event is so big that it is second only, in the island calendar, to @tourguideted's #IOWtweet-up that happens in July each year.  The scooter rally brings approximately 5,000 scooters and riders to the island from all over the country.  Many of the riders belong to clubs.

#MiniBreeze needed to find out more.

This one had so many lights that #MiniBreeze decided to have a seat.  The manperson was pretty excited by this scooter as well.

No don't worry they were not stealing it, you can just see the owner in the background.

Everywhere #MiniBreeze looked he could see more scooters.

There were scooters everywhere.

He was surrounded by scooters and scooterists.

He even saw scooters with Union Flags on them.

The rally goes on for two more days so #MiniBreeze is going down to the seafront again.  On Sunday there will be a big ride out when all the scooters will go for a ride together.  Some scooterists come every year.  Its an exciting event.  All the hotels are full, some of the scooterists camp on campsites.  Lets hope the weather stays good for them.

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

#MiniBreeze and Mini-Kolo have lunch with Henry

#MiniBreeze enjoyed his lunch with @Henryandfriends, in April, so much that, as we are off work, we decided to do it again.  This time Henry came over to our island for lunch in our favourite Mediterranean restaurant.

Mini-Kolo decided that as he was not going to get to wear his holiday shirt in California, this year, he would wear it for going out to lunch.

We met up with Henry and looked at the menu while we chatted.

A big decision had to be made - pizza or salad!!

Well Henry and #MiniBreeze are at least checking out the salad, but I think there is no doubt what Mini-Kolo is looking at.

Well the others made a choice, Henry seems to have gone for the salad but #MiniBreeze has gone for the pizza.  he is sharing it with Henry's friends Wee Wilf and Rose, they look interested, but they are tiny so #MiniBreeze needn't worry about sharing.

We chatted for ages and had a very good time.  Thank you for coming over Henry, we hope you enjoyed your day here.

Monday, 17 August 2015

On the beach with #MiniBreeze

We were planning a holiday in the US, starting next Monday.  However, sadly, we have had to cancel that but we do live in a lovely place and its been a long time since we had our holiday at home so we will find plenty to do.  We love to walk on the island.  #MiniBreeze decided that he would start the holiday early with a trip to the beach.

Last month we showed you some of the sights of Ryde, we walked that way again but went further.  Once #MiniBreeze had got past the places he showed you before he started posing for pictures.

Just at the point where the coastal path leaves Ryde and becomes Springvale #MiniBreeze noticed this fort out to sea.  This is the one nearest to to the island but there are three of these in this part of the Solent.  They were built to protect the entrance to the Solent from Napoleon, during the Napoleonic wars, as the English worried that Napoleon would send troops through the English Channel and into the Solent.  The island has a large number of fortifications from that war.  They are quite ugly but this one is a luxury home now.

From the end of the Ryde bit of the path he could see:

Springvale beach,

The Boat House pub, which he would very much like to visit because they serve delicious scampi and chips,

and he could see the town of Seaview in the distance.  We walked that way, going through Seaview to two bays beyond.

Before leaving Ryde completely he investigated that very English of traditions, the beach hut.

These are little huts people spend they day at the beach in.  They change into their swimming costumes and usually have a kettle so they can make tea.  Many people keep comfortable beach chairs in them and even barbecues.

Moving on along by Springvale beach #MiniBreeze noticed that there was a countryside view on the other side of the road.  the picture is not too clear but there is a big house and cows in the field.

He got better views of Springvale beach, looking towards Portsmouth on the mainland.

Ah, well #MiniBreeze loves sunbathing, while we were trying to walk between the two bays, through the rocks, he decided to sunbath for a while.

Then he did some rock climbing, there were not many trees on this walk so rocks would have to do for climbing.

He could see out towards St Helen's.  This is St Helen's bay and village on the island, not St Helen's in Lancashire, which is in the north of England.

Ah!! a problem!!  The tide was coming in and #MiniBreeze spent so long sunbathing and rock climbing that the tide cut us off from getting round to the next bay.  We had to go back and climb over the the cliff and down into Priory Bay.

Priory Bay is a sweeping sandy bay where a lot of people bring their boats.  It was quite quiet yesterday, which is surprising on a sunny day in August.

#MiniBreeze found a piece of drift wood to sunbathe on.

Then a rock which enabled him to look out to sea.

He loved the sandy beach.

On the walk back he noticed this building in the sea, near the boats that were waiting to get into the Port of Southampton.  This is another fort which we think is also Napoleonic, it is St Helen's fort.  In the middle of the summer, sometime around July, the tide goes out so far that, for a very short time it is possible to walk out to this fort.  You have to do it at exactly the right time and there is a club that does it.

On the way back we walked back round to Seagrove Bay which is slightly busier and noisier than Priory Bay.

These bays are a beautiful part of the island and we are so lucky that they are within walking distance from home.  The other good thing about them is that they are not easy to get to unless you walk or have a boat and even then when the tide is low sailing round is not that easy.  This means they never get so busy that you can't find a place to sit or swim.

We walked back the same way via Seagrove bay, Seaview town, Springvale and Ryde, an eight mile walk in total.  At home #MiniBreeze took up his favourite position on the sofa to watch our team win.

Friday, 14 August 2015

#MiniBreeze went for another walk!

Last Sunday was a beautiful hot sunny day in the south of England, so we decided it was time for #MiniBreeze to have another outing.  We drove to the local abbey (Quarr Abbey, it was Sunday so we didn't disturb them there, but we will take him there soon).  We parked the car there and started our walk.

We walked along a sun dappled wooded path until we came to Wooton creek.

This is the grounds of a very nice hotel, we will get back there later.

We got back into the woods and #MiniBreeze found this interesting ice house.  It must be very old because even on this little island we all have fridges and freezers now.

#MiniBreeze was very excited to reach the railway track.  We had to cross this and #MiniBreeze sensibly decided to stop and read the warning signs, to ensure that he would be safe.  We think @henryandfriends would approve of this.

After crossing the line #MiniBreeze hoped to see the steam train that runs on this line.  He didn't get to see it but we will make sure he does.  The SR on the gatepost stands for Southern Railway, this was the company that used to run this line.  Now it is a steam railway run as a tourist attraction.

Moving on a little further #MiniBreeze spotted some animals in a field.  At first he thought they were cows but they looked a little strange.  When they came over to chat to him he found out they were ...

llamas!!  These are not native to this country but since the foot and mouth crisis that hit our country in 2001 we have seen more and more llamas in the English countryside.  They were friendly and #MiniBreeze spent some time chatting to them.

#MiniBreeze has been hanging around with Mini-Kolo too long.  On the way back he decided we should stop at the hotel for coffee.  They even gave him a biscuit to go with it.  There were lovely views of Wooton Bridge from the hotel terrace.

It was our first visit to the hotel so we had no idea what good views you got from there.

We started off back towards to abbey to pick up the car.  On the way #MiniBreeze met some new friends.

These dragons have been living on this bench at the abbey for a few weeks.  We guess somebody put them there for a purpose, they look homemade, possibly by children.  They were very friendly and #MiniBreeze will visit them again when we take him to the abbey.

More adventures to come with #MiniBreeze.  Thank you for reading.