Martin on the TGO Challenge 2017

Martin on the TGO Challenge 2017

Sunday, 31 December 2017

Christmas 2017 – A Pictorial Review

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I start with some sad news. Yesterday members of Eagley Jazz Club received the following message from Reg Kingston, concerning a stalwart of the club, Jeff Gilpin:

“Jeff passed away yesterday after suffering a heart attack. We who were at the Jazz Dinner will I think always remember his brave Funeral March.”

Somehow I seem to have missed making a diary entry of the splendid evening on 18 December with a Christmas dinner and the excellent Savannah Jazz Band. Towards the end of the evening, Jeff, who didn’t look well, performed the Funeral March. It was brilliant. I’m sure he will be sadly missed by many people.

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Moving on to the following Saturday, 23 December, Wythenshawe parkrun attracted a motley bunch for its 319th event. Family Jesus turned up in force.

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In addition to the stalwarts pictured above, here are a pair, Paul and Greg, who have over 630 parkruns under their combined belt!

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The two equally generous but opposing in stature kings, Syd and Ken, allowed a tree to slip between them, with Jan and Andy drifting into the picture.

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It was a slow run, with the tree’s material gathering mud and extra weight all the way round. At least Mike didn’t sprint past me at the finish this year. The bacon and sausage butties at the end were most welcome. There was a great turnout of 310 people.

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Christmas Eve found us in Timperley hosting a family gathering. My cameras have been stashed pretty much throughout the Christmas period, so the photos are mainly from other people. I think Sue took this one of the grandchildren. Jessica later had her missing arm sewn back on, but Jacob couldn’t find his dentures.

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Christmas lunch was enjoyed in Timperley with Sue’s mum and dad, Richard and Diana. Before that, Sue and I popped down to Platt Fields Park, where 379 parkrunners were starting Christmas Day with a bit of exercise.

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Greg was there, as were other Wythenshawe regulars, there not being a Christmas Day run at Wythenshawe.

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Joe and Diana joined Sue and started off together.

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But Richard (of Richard and Diana number 2) shot off ahead and whizzed around the fast course in well under 20 minutes (I wish!).

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Joe speeded up towards the end and left Sue trailing, with Diana nowhere to be seen.

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Boxing Day brought a trip to Dunham Massey. I strolled down the towpath whilst the others cheated in the car.

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There’s not an awful lot in flower in the winter garden just now, but the Witch Hazel is quite pretty.

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The oldies spent an hour or two resting on the reindeer bench, then we went for coffee.

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Later on, another family get together provided an image I’ll always remember. I don’t think I’ve seen either of my children washing up before, let alone both at the same time!

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I can’t remember much about the following day, perhaps we rested! But on Thursday we had the pleasure of hosting Jacob and Jessica. The soft play was calculated to tire them out. It didn’t.

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Cooking followed.

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Cup cakes with chocolate icing, and shortbread were produced. Note the technique that avoids their clothing getting clogged up with flour.

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Not even the washing and drying up tired them out.

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Friday morning had been designated for a walk around Lindow Moss. The rain/sleet stopped just as we were about to set off, and whilst it wasn’t as muddy as last week’s effort, those with wellies chose wisely.

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I’ve reported from here many times before. To see pictures, and information about ‘Lindow Man’, type ‘Lindow Moss’ in the search box (top left) and read on…

Today’s walk was just 8 km, on the route shown below. It took us two hours, with a welcome coffee in the Boddington Arms afterwards.

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Parkruns come round quickly at this time of year. Yesterday Wythenshawe’s 320th run was overseen by run director Andy. It was Very Muddy, so perhaps just as well that only168 turned up. A good, sociable occasion as always.

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Sue and I dashed off to enjoy lunch with Dot at the Royal Oak in Eccleshall, returning for yet another family get together, at which the host decided to disclose a wealth of archive material including photos and schoolwork from past generations…

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Having survived the festive period to date, Sue and I will shortly be off to north Manchester to see the New Year in with good friends and lots of good food and wine.

So here’s a final sunset over Timperley from our kitchen window for 2017.

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Our very best wishes to everyone for 2018. Have fun!

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