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Tuesday, 1 January 2013

New Year's beach walk

A Happy New Year, everyone. We went to a lovely party thrown by Liz yesterday evening. She is a superb host. Today we have celebrated the day with a bottle of champagne, a box of chocolate and Italian snacks at lunch time, and then Japanese special meal at dinner time.    

In Japan, the New year's day is the day we spend quiet serene time with our family. We have a special meal.  I have tried to cook something similar over the years. But because I can't get hold of rice cake, which is the most important food for the New Year's day, I had only felt slightly disappointed and frustrated. But this year, I have focused on things I can do with what we have got here, rather than what we can't have. I made stock from Kombu (kelp) and shi-i-take (mushroom) to make this special poultry soup. Mike liked it. That matters most to me. 
Crocus are open in the garden

We took our dogs, Topaz and Pearl to the beach at Whitstable today. Oh, it was a lovely bright day.

Pearl sits on my lap for a longer journey.
 Pearl used to be very sensitive to motion, and hated drives. We have trained her with short drives over the years. But when we take her a longer drive, well, 15 minutes, she still sits on my lap so that she could have fresh air, and when she feels sick, I can put a plastic bag over her head.

Favourite alley
 We parked the car and walked to the beach. Today we went through the Favourite alley to get the beach. There are lots of small alleys to the beach in Whitstable. The ship called Favourite used to harvest oysters here, and the remains are still here, as you can see.

A family photo ( keeping their attention with cookies!)
A kite which scared Pearl. 
 Beach was windy and cold, but we braved ourselves. It's New Year's Day. We must set the tone for the year; healthy and active. Pearl found a beautiful male whippet. They exchanged nose kisses.

Pearl (red coat) and her new friend
 The tide was high, and water was murky. We could see Sheppy over the water.

Waves break at the shore.
 After about a half an hour of walk on the beach, they were put back to on leads, and we walked back to the car on the High street where wind was noticeably milder. We have met about a dozen dogs. They, including our girls, behave very well there.
It's time to go back. 


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