Wolds Diary: New sights and old comforts

EVEN though it’s obviously been winter there have been some beautiful clear days when the sky is that cold clear blue and you can see for miles. Of course the wind has been bitter but walking the Wolds ways has shown me some wonderful views, while I try to clear my head with the bitter wind.

The view of Beverley Minster was splendid... to be interrupted by flashing blue lights.

The dogs have quite enjoyed it but seem clever at finding the most abundant mud puddles that cover them with pale grey mud and subsequently the back of the car and my hallway. My dog Loo Roll, who became quite ill, has made a speedy recovery, thanks to the wonderful lady vet I see at the local veterinary practice, which is only about 500 metres from my house.

My young lodger, who had a job, has been trying to find more work as his job seems to have dried up. I’ve been trying to help him and together we’ve been trailing round trying to find him an opportunity. This has taken me to places I would not normally go, such as the Job Centre in York, where he’s had to sign on.

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I rather enjoy people watching, and on this occasion I was thoroughly entertained watching the various persons coming in and out. Some were, to put it mildly, cocky and treated the whole thing as a joke or a nuisance. Others were anxious or resigned, and yet more folk just quietly did as they were asked with patience and hopefulness. The staff were friendly and helpful and very courteous. The security staff were alert and watchful, quickly assessing any potential trouble maker. I was rather impressed. I’ve no memory of ever having visited a job centre other than in the course of my duties in the police years ago.

I’ve never been a very political person but have finally joined a party, and for the first time in my life, attended a political meeting. It was a small and rather local affair, and very interesting and enjoyable. It was good to exchange views with like-minded people and the drive back gave me time to consider what had been discussed there.

It seems to have been a week for me to go to places where I was not in my comfort zone. I think I may just be getting old.

My lodger plays with the Humberside Police Concert Band and I went to yet another concert, this time in Hull, at the Trinity Methodist Church. It is a huge and imposing building. We arrived really early and with over an hour to wait until the concert started I decided to go for a wander to have a look round.

That I had arrived in university land was rather obvious and I passed a number of bars and establishments where I would have not fitted in at all, and then to my delight I found a warm, inviting, place called Coffee Planet where I had a delicious and disgustingly fattening mocha coffee (with a flake bar), and the staff were so helpful. On the way back to the church I passed the most entrancing little street where the very tasteful Christmas lights had been suspended over the whole path between the houses. In my travels recently I have seen a wide assortment of decorations from the frankly vulgar to the delicate.

The concert was just as good as I had hoped and the Deputy Crime Commissioner for Humberside was there and spoke warmly about the evening. The highlight for me was the superb flute solo by Lisa Hey, who played an inspiring polka.

On the drive back, the view of Beverley Minster, floodlit in the distance, was quite striking and then I saw in the road behind me blue lights approaching at speed. I pulled over as the police car went by and with our excitement over for the evening we got home and promptly raided the remains of the peach schnapps and peach liqueur. I needed to replenish stocks soon anyway, having had them for over a year!

I managed another day over with my friend at Scarborough where the dogs had a great romp on the beach and then we went to a garden centre where she insisted on buying me a Christmas lunch, before we chose presents for her sister and visited the grotto of Santa who was fast asleep in readiness for Christmas Eve.

On the way back I went to a huge supermarket for grocery items, and then the dogs, and I, were really rather exhausted.