Hello my little munchkins. Hope you are all well? So Maisy and I have been out on the road during the last week.
We have been trying out different places to stay and getting used to each other. There have been a couple of hiccups, but I am glad to say that we have made it through our first proper week together.
Much has happened, although not a huge amount of craft but do let me fill you in.
Some of you will have seen the occasional picture on Facebook of places that I have been however there hasn’t been much else to accompany them so, whilst it is baking-ly gorgeous outside, I thought that I would take shelter in Maisy and catch up on a few bits and bobs – including this blog.
So the week started with me exiting the Surrey workshop. I was sad to leave the place behind but onwards I must go. I clambered into Maisy and headed out onto the road.
As I wasn’t due in Warwickshire until the end of the week and had just done a full on week, I thought that it would be nice if Maisy and I went for a nice little trip to the coast.
Given that Worthing was only a short 30 mile drive I set the sat nav and off we trotted.
I’ll be honest. I thought a 30 mile drive would not take long at all however it took about an hour. Hmm, must not underestimated distances when no large motorways are involved.
I found a little spot for Maisy to rest her wheels and went for a little wander.
Now, as many of you that have been following this saga know, I still hadn’t worked out the gas system at this point so I whipped out my emergency hob and got the kettle whistlin’
Oooo, I do love a good brew – especially with a jolly good snack!
Anyways, I had been a wandering for a bit and as I sat and drank me brew the rain, that had been around all day, began to clear and revealed a lovely view for me to sink into.
Beautiful isn’t it? Well, you wait until you see the view that I was greeted with the next morning…!
Wowza! Oh, no, it wasn’t a giant mug about to attack me. That was my morning brew photo bombing the lovely sea view.
Coughing and spluttering, erm, I mean breathing in the fresh sea air, I thought that I’d best start planning what was to be happening at the weekend so now was a good time to start testing out Maisy for elbow room.
Sadly, I didn’t finish this because it was all too soon time to move on and hit the road again. Having remembered that I needed to head back to Cambridgeshire to finish off things at the flat before I headed over to Warwickshire I decided to jaunt on up the motorway and then find somewhere local-ish to park overnight.
That’s when I hit this lot …
… well, I didn’t mean literally hit. I mean got stuck in traffic. Boooo! *shakes fist at traffic*
Anyway, I eventually found somewhere and clambered into my little bed.
I was treated to a lovely view on Tuesday morning but heck, when you wake up and the skies are blue and the grass is green then woo-hoo! Thank you Wednesday!
Even Maisy had her armpits open to let the breeze in!
Now, Wednesday must have seen me coming and thought that it would treat me well as I found a small car park by a lake that was just perfect for starting work on the rewards from the crowd funding.
It also made for a marvelous brew-view during my tea breaks …
Now, I haven’t shown you much in the way of van food so here is what I rustled up on Wednesday night.
Rice and Spag-Bol. Basic but nice :)
Now, it wasn’t all views and foods. I had been booking more workshops and also monitoring those that were already out there and sadly at this point I realised that despite the exciting project that I had lined up, there just weren’t enough people willing to come along to the Warwickshire workshop to justify the expense of paying for the venue that had been chosen.
I therefore had to make the difficult decision to postpone this to a later date. Hopefully there will be more takers then.
I decided to stay in the same region, to save on fuel, and therefore found a different overnight stay near to the park in which I had spent the day before.
It meant that I was treated to a lovely view of a green field in the morning.
Not entirely sure that I am going to get tired of this sort of view.
It also meant that I got to have lunch at a cute little hole-in-the-wall caff-gaff.
This did however attract the attention of a little bread thief.
*shakes fist* Yeah, you’d better scarper you little DUCK!
Of course I immediately felt guilty and fed her pretty much the rest of the bread on the plate. Mostly because she appeared to have three suitors and was using all of her energy trying to fight them off. Girl Power!
Hehe, anyway, looks like I was a little premature with womens’ lib for ducks as later on she was waddling around with this dude.
Ah well, if he’s the one, good luck to her.
So on Friday I had to make a trip back to Peterborough to clear out the rest of my things from the flat and get the place ready to hand over the keys.
It was quite a nerve wracking time to be honest as I was wondering whether I had made the right choice in doing this and what the future will hold.
I am glad therefore that I had had the chance to spend some time with Maisy so that I knew what was in store. It did give me more resolve to continue.
The time came. Everything was cleared, meter readings were taken and the keys got handed over. I am now officially ‘of no fixed abode’.
It was quite a liberating feeling to be honest. This coupled with not having a workshop this weekend also gave me the courage not to use the sat nav and just to point Maisy south and drive.
Having reached South Mimms service station, and it only being £15 to park overnight, I decided to stay there and then decide on where to go in the morning.
The universe again decided to treat me to a great view; this time for very different reasons.
I did have a little giggle.
I shouldn’t have as the driver of the van looked exasperated and someday I may need him – it’s a good job that I joined AA, RAC and Green Flag when I got Maisy, isn’t it?
On waking, the sudden realization that I had very few clean clothes almost made up my mind on where I was to stay over the weekend.
I did a little admin over a Starbucks coffee in the food hall before setting off. This camping lark is tough!
Having joined the Caravan Club, I also used their app to find a nice little site in Littlehampton, West Sussex where I would be parking up.
Traffic was free flowing and easy going.
The site was easy to find and Karen, the lovely lady that booked me in, was super friendly and helpful. She was very eager to know what the challenge was all about too :)
After telling her all about it I told her that I was super eager to know how to get my laundry done. Karen kindly explained it all. Coin operated. Shove the washing in, put your coins in, press go.
In retrospect, I possibly could have figured this out, but it’s my first time using a caravan site so I didn’t know whether there was a freemason style handshake that one had to do in order to access these amenity rooms.
Anyway, another first for Maisy and I happened here.
Yes, I plugged Maisy into the mains.
What’s the big deal? Well, it meant that I could use the microwave and use the three pin socket – no big deal until you are without one, believe me.
I also took full advantage of the large hot showers that were available on site and had a little soapy treat for myself :)
That sounded a little ruder than I intended! Lol.
So, anyway, laundry done; carcas cleaned and it was time for my night time cuppa. The views as you have seen so far have been really inspiring me to keep going, and the view of the evening clouds really captivated me on this occasion.
Sunday I woke and decided to head a little further East. Using the Caravan Club app I again found a lovely little site, this time near Battle, East Sussex.
Driving through lots of oddly named villages, Upper Dicker and Lower Dicker to name just two, and windy b roads, I eventually found my destination and settled Maisy into her parking bay and put her on mains power again.
Now, it hadn’t occurred to me until now but I thought about asking the guys at the site if they could help me with the gas.
They did! Sort of. They confirmed that the regulator flow might be wonky and they gave me the details of a local service station that could take a proper look – see, I’m not useless!
Now, you might think that this trip has been all without incident – do remember this is me. There have been some interesting attempts at driving with things on/in/open. Not sure I should say anymore though!
Thankfully nothing has fallen out of cupboards whilst I have been driving and there have been no traffic related incidents – phew! *touches wood*
Oh, nearly forgot, I also gashed my leg.
That b******d hurt! *Whimpers*
Good job I actually DID pack a first aid kit. :)
Right, well, I hope you have enjoyed this little update. I hope to bring you more over the coming months. Hopefully they will be more craft based than random ramblings, but hey, if enough of you like it, I’ll keep doing it.
Let’s see what next week brings!
Ok, take care and I’ll see you again soon!
33 thoughts on “All Counties Craft Challenge Diary – Maisy On The Road”
Great Blog John, Reading About Your Travels Has Made Me Want To Do The Same , I Don’t Think The Wife Will Go For It , Did You Say Leave Her At Home , No That Was Me Hearing Things Again ,When You Get To My Age That Happens ,Ha Ha Or Should It Be Lol, As The Youngsters Say ,Keep Going John Hope To See You When You Reach Hampshire ,Geoff Rogers
Over the next year are you going to be anywhere near Chesham in buckinghamshie HP5 postal code area? I am willing to travel to larger nearby towns such as high Wycombe, Aylesbury or Hemel Hempstead, but not Milton Keynes that is too far for me to get to. I have several mental illnesses and physical conditions, and I go to groups run by mind. I do not have Internet in my home so I don’t use it on a daily nor a weekly basis, and I find certain things difficult and complicated to do when it comes to the Internet, so I don’t know if I will work out how to get here again.
Are you in the next year going to be anywhere near chesham, buckinghamshie? It’s a small town, but I’m willing to travel to nearby larger towns such as high Wycombe, Aylesbury or Hemel Hempstead. Milton Keynes is too far for me to travel to. I have mental illness and I go to groups run by mind. I don’t have Internet in my home so only use it now n then.
Aww what a shame I didn’t know you were coming to Worthing, I could have taken you out for Coffee and Cake. I would have loved to meet you. Your blog is lovely, it’s also therapeutic with all the gorgeous pictures, I felt quite calm after reading it, ahhhhh.
Love and Light
I’ll be back again. This was just a quick visit.
How fantastic that you keep us up to date on your travels, it was so lovely to read it all. I wonder if there is any chance you will be anywhere near me later in the summer. I’m not sure how to find your itinerary?
Very best wishes to you and Maisy of course!!!!
Juliette Morley xxxxx
Hey John. really enjoyed the ramblings of a country travelling crafter. Really interesting and fun to know where you are and what you are getting up to. Ops that sounded worse than it is ! Hats off to you for taking this on. Wish i had your courage. Safe and happy travelling and every success in this terrific venture. Good luck, my friend