New year, new car
Christmas 2003 was not great. Graham's mother was ill, and we did a lot of extra travelling. The gear box in our old car had been noisy for a while, and was getting progressively more so. Our local garage were on the lookout for a replacement. But one frosty night, when we had persuaded mother to come back to our house, the clutch started jumping, and we were afraid that we might break down with an invalid in the car. We got home fine, but we resolved to go out and find a new car. We exchanged our 11 year old Nissan Micra for a new Nissan Micra (pre-registered, but it had 2 miles on the clock when we picked it up). If the new car serves us even nearly as well as the old car did (over 140,000 on the clock), we shall be very pleased.
We made a family visit to Cornwall at the end of March. We hired a caravan near Bude, and had time for some decent walks, besides visiting family. We made a return visit in November, managing some great walks considering the time of year; and this time we stayed with family.
We hired a static caravan in Glen Nevis for the final week in May. The weather was excellent. We had a wonderful climb up Ben Nevis (we found 6-8 inches of snow on the summit, there was bright sunshine, and it was hot!). We also climbed Stob ban: much more challenging, with a bit of scrambling as opposed to the easy tourist route up Ben Nevis. We did a long walk around theHeights of Kinlochleven: up onto the moors in search of Blackwater Reservoir.
In April we spent a week staying with Graham's mother in Leicester, as she underwent and recuperated from a cataract operation. We also made several visits to Solihull, and joined in nephews' birthday parties. We travelled to Solihull to spend Christmas Day with Graham's family. Then a few days later we entertained some of Dylys' family at our home.
We moved to Macclesfield in 2001 for Graham's job in the town with Critical Path. Sadly, Critical Path has become a shadow of its former self, and Graham survived a number of rounds of redundancies, but not the 2004 round. However, he was able to obtain a new position with Hfs, starting in October this year, with a two-week break between jobs. By the end of the year, Dylys had clocked up three years with her current job for the Information Commissioner in Wilmslow.
We made a day trip to climb Mount Snowdon whilst Graham was between jobs. Sadly, the weather deteriorated, and we did most of the walk in thick drizzle. We got to the top, but our cagoules were tested to breaking point and we were thoroughly soaked. Fortunately, it was very mild, so we did not get cold on the descent, despite being soaked to the skin.
At Christmas, we managed a short walk around Errwood and the Goyt Valley (close to the Cat and Fiddle).
In the spring, Graham became secretary, and Dylys became a deacon at Bethel Baptist Church. We continue to be involved in regular activities with the church, and you will find details of some of the one off activities on the Events page of the Bethel web site.
It was a relatively quiet Christmas: we visited family, entertained family and enjoyed a quiet few days to ourselves.