Our first day anywhere on holiday is usually to acclimatise and relax into the visit. That was also the order of the day today. Although I call it a holiday, it’s anything but. Visiting back home like this typically involves a lot of stress, moving around and logistics. Still, we’re going to make the best of it.

Despite my best hopes, I awoke again this morning in a lot of pain. I feel the neck injury, or whatever else it is, is slowly getting better, but only very slowly. It’s still a huge distraction for me. I’m still constantly shifting my body around, trying to find that one position where the pain is tolerable. Just when I think I’ve found a bit of relief, the pain resurfaces, and I’m shifting again. It’s exhausting.

Since we picked up some bacon, sausage, eggs, bread and other provisions yesterday, I whipped up a cooked breakfast for everyone. Except Joey, of course. He rarely eats anything in the morning and is usually so fussy that he won’t eat anything we prepare for him anyway. Alas, he suffers from the same problem I’ve suffered from for the past several decades — a fussy eater with a limited range of foods he’ll tolerate.

Since I was still a bear with a sore head all morning, Sandy took the kids and the car key and escaped for a few hours. They disappeared somewhere — presumably to go shopping somewhere — while I took advantage of the now-empty house. Ordinarily, I might park myself on the couch in front of the TV and binge-watch something that didn’t require much mental energy. Sadly, although this house does have 2 flat-screen TVs in the cramped living room, neither of them is functional. We cannot get any regular British TV channels on either of them. I messaged our host about this, but he replied that only Netflix or YouTube was available. Sigh. It clearly states ‘TV’ in the property listing, so I assumed it would mean that there would also be TV channels. It’s probably the one thing that makes this property a little less inviting as a result. It’s already bad enough that there is but a single 2-seater couch in the living room, but the fact we cannot simply sit and relax in front of the goggle box takes the edge of things a little for me.

With nothing left to do but sit and wallow in my self-pity, I went back to bed for a nap. Maybe the neck pain would diminish after catching up on some lost sleep. When I reopened my eyes, it was 11 am.

I tried as best I could to write some of my daily journal, but couldn’t keep it up for long before the pain overwhelmed me.

Sandy returned and dropped off Joey. He was sporting an armful of new toys and a Cheshire grin. He disappeared to his room, although there was nowhere else for him to be anyway. For the next few hours, I heard him happily spinning his newly acquired Beyblades in the new arena he found for himself. At one point, I did worry that the noise might be annoying the neighbours. We can hear whenever they shift around their house, so I’m sure they can also hear all the goings on here.

At one point, there was a knock at the door. A woman and her teenage daughter asked about the house being for rent. I explained the property was not ours and that we had rented it ourselves. They did want to come in and look around, but I suggested they should instead make an appointment with the property owner. The guest later told me the house wasn’t for rent, so I do not know where this woman got that idea.

Sandy eventually returned with Jae. We chilled for a bit, all squeezed together on the one couch in front of the black TV. Eventually, dinnertime rolled around. We decided to get some chip shop food and take it to Dad’s for the evening. It would give us something to do and provide another opportunity to visit Dad. Jae has really taken a liking to her granddad. She will spend every minute of the day there if possible. It was the same the last time around. It’s fantastic to watch that relationship blossom. In fact, when it was time to go back to the house, Jae insisted she wanted to remain to chat with her granddad some more. Sandy and I took Joey back to the house to settle in for the night. I would collect Jae later.

For part of this evening, I sat at the laptop and explored options for selling some of our digital photographs online. We have a fantastic photo album we’ve collected over the years. Most of the photos I have included in the 8 volumes of travel memoirs are all of sufficient quality to be sold. I sorted out a batch to experiment with. The only versions I had access to were the reduced-size ones that were especially exported for inclusion in the eBooks. Those had to be reduced in size a little to make them suitable for the eBook, so they don’t quite have the minimum resolution requirements for online photography sales. When I get back home, I will have access to my main photo libraries with all the originals. I can then export the higher-resolution versions that should be suitable for sale. Perhaps this might develop into another income source. Time will tell.

Other than writing the journal notes, I was in too much pain to write the actual journal. This is why I’m now a day behind in releasing the blogs. Hopefully, I can catch up again tomorrow — if I can sit at the computer for long enough.