Back in Beeston - Dan's Week With Family

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Saturday 18 April 2015

Back in Beeston - Dan's Week With Family

After a hectic fortnight in Durham, enjoying lots of time with friends alongside a mass of chores and admin necessary to allow us to travel a while longer, it felt strange to be back on the road. Heading south out of Durham on Friday morning, retracing the same route down the A1(M) that we had started our adventure upon way back in May 2014, was a strange feeling with many memories coming to mind. Our destination for the day was Nottingham, specifically Beeston, and my childhood home. Having not seen my family for 11 months I was excited to say the least at the prospect of getting to spend a few days seeing everyone and especially meeting my 4 month old nephew Dexter.

We took a pause on our journey south to stop off in Richmond, Yorkshire and visit our friend Gwen at Bunny Burrows. Although we had gotten to see Gwen briefly at the Hot Cross Bunny Day Fundraiser a couple of weeks beforehand we wanted to stop by a have a proper chat. Also, Gwen had just been awarded the CEVA Volunteer of the Year Award in recognition of all of the amazing work she does and we wanted to be there to congratulate her in person. It was a very nice afternoon chatting and catching up and it was late afternoon before we were rejoining the A1(M).

It wasn't until 7pm that our motorhome finally pulled of the M1 and made it's way into Beeston, but I just couldn't resist paying a flying visit to my grandparents (already in their pyjamas) for a long overdue hug. It felt amazing to see them again, albeit briefly, before we headed on to our overnight base, my dad's driveway in the motorhome.

As the weekend dawned it was time to meet Dexter, back at my grandparents just before lunch. We'd seen photos of course, but meeting him in person felt very special and we were so happy for my brother and Faye. As a special treat we even took a stroll into Beeston together and I got to carry Dexter in his Baby Bjorn! With a 4 month old happily dangling from my chest I really did feel on top of the world. It was quite sad when it was time for him to dismount and we said farewell before enjoying a relaxing afternoon with my dad.

The following day we were back with Chris, Faye, Dexter and also Harriet (my youngest brothers girlfriend expecting their first baby within the month), meeting up in Attenborough nature reserve. This is a place full of childhood memories for me, so enjoying a stroll followed by a nice cup of tea with the family and Dexter felt very special.

All too soon the weekday had rolled around and most folks were back at work while we passed our days completing more admin jobs and chores, with more mail to sort and people to contact with late afternoons and evenings were spent visiting, alongside occasional nostalgic jogs around my old hometown. We even fitted in a sunny afternoon ride in the Attenborough nature reserve with dad, a trip to see my youngest brother Mike and Harriet in their home (complete with newly painted nursery) and walking Jess with mum.

Looking back now, the week just seemed to fly by and all too soon it was time to say goodbye. I was grateful for all of the time we'd enjoyed with family and especially that I'd gotten to see my grandparents every day and it did feel hard to leave. However, I also couldn't escape the joy and freedom I feel every time I get behind the wheel of the motorhome and as we began to head further south, to see other friends and make plans for our next adventures, it was with mixed emotions, both excited to be back on the road while already looking forward to my next visit to Beeston.

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