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Rock Maze
  • Writer's pictureNeil

Marvellous Adventure

Lockdown, Lockdown.... so good I named it twice.

Two weeks before the first lockdown, in March, I was engaged in my own personal lockdown. I was in lockdown in RCH Treliske for the removal of a sinister tumour that had metastasised from my previous bowel cancer from two years before. At the time my surgeon was confident he had been able to remove it all, the biopsies supported this assumption. I recovered surprisingly quickly considering the size of my scar, or should I say incision and, at the time, didn’t need chemo. This tumour was in a bugger of a place behind my stomach, dangerously close to my spine. It needed to be gone.

When this happens you get scanned again, about 3 months later, to makes sure the cancer has gone or at least arrange a treatment programme. So I went for my scan and subsequent results. Well about 3 months later the tumour had returned but was now inoperable. Sod it! Wait! There can't be any other news can there? Oh yes there can! My original bowel cancer had also metastasised to my liver. This had happened in a unique way. For me there’s no chance of removing the offending part which often can be successfully undertaken. My dear liver, my dear unique part of me, cannot have a chunk just trimmed away because, in non medical terms, my liver is riddled.

Before all this news changed things for us so profoundly, we had a glorious Springtime.

In the balmy early springtime when “stay safe”, “lockdown”, “furlough” and many other words and phrases haven’t entered our lexicon I maximised the time afforded to me by my hospital staycation to plan a holiday, a road trip. From my previous cancer experience I was confident, post surgery and before my scan, that we could find at least a 4 week window to explore and considering my job I was looking at a minimum of 3 months off work. Armed with Google and an old school notebook I started to plan a Marvellous Adventure.

Where shall we take our trusty motorhome? It’s a joy taking a motorhome to Europe. You simply don’t need to book places to stay. Communities often identify and equip parking areas for motorhomes to encourage tourists to dally for a while in their town or village. They’re often quite inexpensive or free.

I planned a trip, subject to executive approval, into Belgium, the Netherlands, and Germany. Destination;

Island in the Baltic Sea. Then, depending on timing and of course weather, we might be able to squeeze a couple of days popping into Poland, as you do, before returning via the Harz region of Germany. We weren’t planning on meeting many Brits on our month long travels. I requested tourist information from the relevant areas, poured over Google maps and accessed lists of hundreds of possible motor home parking spots. One spot we found was at a canals side sailing club in the Netherlands. All the basic amenities, a water taxi to the town and bike hire for two people all for 15€ a night, no booking required. Try finding that kind of deal at home!

Anyway we all know now that that planned trip will forever languish on the drawing board.

Undaunted by the worryingly intensifying travel restrictions the planning took another direction. A slightly less Marvellous Adventure, a UK holiday, a staycation. Let’s go to visit some friends and explore closer to home. First stop, somewhere near Devizes, then on to Henley on Thames (all the basic amenities, no water taxi to the town, no bike hire for two people, all for £35 a night, advance booking required). Motor-homing in the UK is significantly more costly. From Henley on to Walton on Thames for a stop on my brother’s driveway then on again to visit friends in Sussex before following the south coast back to God’s own country.

Nope, not happening, another planned trip to forever languish on the drawing board.

So what of our uber expensive white plastic box that spoils our view from the front of our house. Well since all this pandemic it’s ventured out to Carbis Bay (not a G7 summit) for 3 nights, had a day in the National Trust carpark at Crantock and a few hours at Porthluney colloquially known as Caerhays. Perhaps a trip to Par Market Food Hall or shall we call it

“Parbados Marché, Magasin d’ épicerie”

and dream of a Marvellous Adventure?

Don't forget the Tuesday 10am Coffee Club

Follow the stuff below or go to and squirrel your way in from there.

Neil BATE is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting. Topic: Coffee Club 17 Jan Time: Jan 19, 2021 10:00 AM Join Zoom Meeting Meeting ID: 714 7629 5303 Passcode: 3gDkY1

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