Dorset: Day 5 – 27.05.2020……….Two women, a lay-by and a can of squirty cream!
Updated: Jun 1, 2020
After yesterdays very long walk in the searing heat we decided to take it easy today and do something more sedentary, like a trip to the beach, so a trip to the beach and a swim it is then. Beach stuff packed, cool box stuffed full with our Greek lunch and of course not forgetting the squirty cream we were ready to head off to Portland. However, before setting off to collect Maice a quick detour to Jane and Steves was needed to go pick up a map and some walking books. Not that we needed a map to get to Portland of course, no, J&S thought we may need some more ideas for walks during our staycation and thought OS Map 117 would suit us. They even offered up a compass, which is really helpful if not a bit ominous, and will come in really handy if either of us knew how to use one! Talking about walks, we’d like to give a ‘shout out’ to those friends who’ve told us where to go, so to speak, in providing us with more walking ideas. Claire sent us details of the Jubilee Trail, a walk of just 90 miles! I know we said we wanted to do some long walks on our staycation, but a long walk to us is 10 miles! Fair do’s to Claire though, we did manage to incorporate part of the Jubilee trail on Day 4! And then there’s Sue who sent us details of a walk around the Little Bredy area which takes you to Bridehead lake, which apparently is where Series 3 of Broadchurch was filmed, that’s definitely worth a visit. We may even try that on Friday although we’re a tad concerned with the directions which have advised taking an OS map……..just as well we’ve got J&S’s compass!!
Having collected Maice at 10.30am we headed off along the causeway to Portland and the beach area in front of Quiddles Café, which unfortunately remains closed. Managing to bag the last parking space in the small parking area, we walked up the lane to the promenade and surveyed the beach scene in front of us. The sweep of the bay looked amazing, the sea was calm and very blue and fortunately the beach was relatively quiet. We found a spot where we could socially distance, laid out our towels on the uncomfortable pebbles and glanced at each other. As much as the sea looked very inviting, it also looked extremely cold. The man further on from us was struggling into his wet suit, mind you he was trying to put it on whilst sittting down rather than standing up, but we only had our swimming costumes, so we were really going to feel the cold. But hey, we’re M&A, and we’re not going to let a little matter of the cold worry us, it’s just a case of mind over matter. So donning our swim shoes we hobbled over the pebbles and straight into the water. ‘@!*$?!@*!’ is all we can say about how cold it was! Phew, that certainly took our breath away but how very refreshing. The man still struggling into his wetsuit looked on in disbelief and when we emerged from the sea ten seconds later he told us he felt a bit of a wimpy kid!
We stayed on the beach for about half an hour, trying to dry off in the sun before packing up and heading off to Lidl Portland to a) buy a few provisions and b) to have a nose around and then we were heading back to Maices house so that a) Maice could collect her knickers and b) we could use the facilities before heading off to lunch. All we can say about our shop at Lidls is that it was an experience. It’s much bigger than the those in Dorchester and Weymouth and as we didn’t know where everything was we wandered, socially distancing all the way, up and down the aisles until we come to the household items. Now, why they’re selling long handled pizza oven paddles beats us, I mean, how many of us have a pizza oven at home, or are they to be used for taking things out of a normal convential oven? The mind boggles. Out of the ten checkout tills only one was open so we went to use the self-service checkout instead. Didn’t even know Lidl did self-service. We had a system. I took everything out of the basket and put them on the counter whilst Maice did the scanning and put them into her shopping bag. Next thing we know the alarm sounds, very loudly and the cashier on the only open check-out till came over and scolded Maice for putting her handbag on the counter with her shopping bag and said handbag was manhandled onto the floor by the cashier. That told us then! We continued on when the alarm sounded again. Once again the cashier came over, and even though we think it went off because of the tins of gin and tonics, Maice was given a demonstration on how to use the self-service checkout. ‘You take the item from here, scan it like this, and then place it in the shopping bag here’ the cashier told Maice. Right then, so that’s how it works…..who knew! When the alarm went off for the third time, a different member of staff turned up. We apologised profusely, finished the scanning, paid and made a hasty retreat. In hindsight we should have stayed in the queue with the cashier, it would have been much quicker as everyone in the queue for the cashier had been and gone! Never mind, it was an experience!
Having used the facilities at Maices place, and Maice now wearing her knickers we headed along the coast road looking for a lay-by. Yes, you heard correctly. We wanted to find a nice lay-by with a view over the sea where we could stop and enjoy a picnic lunch. And I must say, we found a lovely lay-by just outside Abbotsbury, two on from the lay-by with the ice-cream van. We parked up, hung up the bunting, and made ourselves at home. Marvin was besides himself as he hadn’t been out since Maice adopted him back in 2017 so we let him hang out of the window so he too could admire the view. Ah, this was the life. We all glanced at each other and nodded and said, as we always do, ‘how lucky we are to live where we do’, with the countryside and the sea right on our doorstep.
Today it’s our friend Franca’s birthday and in true M&A style we created our own ‘birthday card’ using our new lay-by as a backdrop. So, Happy Birthday Franca…..we hope you have a lovely day and look forward to celebrating with you when you and John can open up the Horse with the Red Umbrella.
Lunch consisted of a Greek μεζέ of vine leaves, tzatziki, olives, stuffed mini peppers, bread sticks and of course cheese and spinach pies. After our dessert of a pecan and maple twist we thought we’d let our lunch ‘go down’ before introducing the squirty cream to the lay-by. Plenty of time for that! Ah this is the life. The three of us enjoying the wonderful views, the sea, the countryside and watching the birds of prey circling overhead on the look out for lunch. We followed two Red Kites in the sky as they soared overhead, the markings on their wings were beautiful. What wonderful creatures they are.
Soon it was time to partake in the ‘squirty cream’ challenge. Every week, Maice and her team come up with a challenge of things they have to do, for a bit of light relief during their hectic, home working schedule. Previous challenges have included who can hold the longest plank, quizzes and now the squirty cream challenge. The idea is to squirt a blob of cream on the back of your hand, then slap your arm and the blob should jump up in the air, the object being to catch the blob of cream in your mouth! I have to say, this is no easy challenge, as the number of outtakes we did before the cream actually made it into our mouths is too many to record. So there we are in Marvins Lay-by, two grown women, trying desperately to get a hole in one! Oh how we laughed. Goodness knows what the passing motorists must have thought! As you can imagine there was squirty cream everywhere…..on the ground, resembling seagull poo, on Maices nose and sunglasses, down Maices neck, on Maices chair……..you get the picture that Maice was not so good at this! Finally, after about twenty five outtakes we managed to complete the challenge and the video evidence posted back to Maices colleagues as proof. Most of her colleagues had carried out their challenge in the garden, I doubt many have completed it in a lay-by!
Totally exhausted by our efforts we needed a rest before packing up and making our way home. Can you believe that we’ve spent three hours in Marvins Lay-by and had the most wonderful time. We’d definitely recommend this to anyone and if you do go there, don’t forget your can of squirty cream!
So another day comes to an end and what a great day its been. We’ve been for a swim, we’ve had a tour of Lidl Portland, we’ve watched birds of prey, we’ve given a lay-by a new name, we’ve completed the squirty cream challenge and best of all, Marvin has had a lovely day out. To see his little cheery face looking out through the car window taking in the wonderful vista brings a smile to our faces. So today’s blog is for Marvin. And remember, everyone needs a Marvin in their life!
Back walking tomorrow, so best have an early night. See you tomorrow……...