At work our leave year ends at the end of March.
I had two days annual leave left from my allocation and so I booked last Thursday and Friday off.
Thursday was mostly spent catching up with my friend G.
It's always a delight to see her and we could just as happily passed another 3 hours away on top of the 3 hours we did spent chatting over coffee.
Friday was spent with the other G in my life, my husband Graham.
We had decided a little trip to Portsmouth was what was needed.
We trotted off to the local station, me (as seen below) wearing my new coat.
I say new, but it'll be no surprise for you to hear that it's not brand new, just new to me.
My mum actually picked it up for me last year at a car boot. A lady was selling clothing at 3 items for £1.00 and so mum bagged this for me along with a winter coat for S and a top for herself.
This is the coat's first proper outing as I have been a bit unsure about the colour. My previous winter coat was a lovely dark green and I felt this was a bit too luminous in comparison but my old coat has now been consigned to the recycling bin and so a change was needed.
Talking of needing a change, my hair needs dyeing looking at all that grey!
Arriving at the station in Portsmouth I had to snap Emma Hamilton and Lord Nelson after our recent trip to London.
Portsmouth had been chosen as our destination as G had been wanting to go to the Isle of Wight music festival exhibition at the Guildhall and all I needed to do was buy a birthday gift and that could be bought there just as well as anywhere else.
The exhibition is only small but there was lots of information and some great photos on display. I didn't really know too much about the history of those IOW festivals beforehand but now I know that the only act ever to be booed off stage is Kris Kristofferson and the only act to have been billed but not played is Mungo Jerry because they turned up too late!
This poster was used to advertise the 1970 festival and shows that a ticket cost £3.00. One website I looked at said that this amount equates to about £45 today.
On leaving the Guildhall I noticed that one of the rooms has a frieze painted round the top of the walls depicting each of the four seasons. The winter one was just above the door to the exit and I think it was the red of the robin or the child's coat which must have caught my eye.
From the Guildhall we went to the pub for lunch and then over to the shops where the gift buying proved to be more elusive than I had hoped.
Whilst strolling around we wandered past a women's clothes shop and this sign on the front instantly reminded of the Pippa dolls I had when I was little. I loved playing with those dolls so much.
And so to Saturday.
T has just started learning to drive. I have agreed to take him out for some extra practice, but not on proper roads. So on Saturday afternoon G and I went out for a walk to explore the possible option of a small industrial park near to where we live.
There were lots of boring looking modern offices and warehouses and then in among them was a building which had a bit of character but which very sadly was all boarded up and didn't look like it was still in use.
Also seen by us for the first time was this memorial to RJ Mitchell. It stands on the site of where the first Spitfire was built by Supermarine. Real history right on our doorstep.
We ended Saturday by watching The Duchess.
I read Amanda Foreman's about Georgiana The Duchess of Devonshire years ago and it's one which is still on my bookshelf now, a definite keeper.
We both enjoyed the movie, the costumes and the locations are as stunning as you would expect, but it's not one we are likely to watch again and so it has been passed along to a colleague of G's for her to enjoy.