Measuring via KitKat
Back in 2018 there had been a July road trip from Bedfordshire to Cheshire with the Cal Guys as passengers.
“Remember how Grampy always had KitKats in the car?” Cal Guy mentioned in a FaceTime conversation before he and his sister flew to the UK for Christmas 2022. Perhaps KitKats aren’t available in his neck of the (Southern Californian) woods, but he remembers clearly the shape, the packaging and the taste of these simple little chocolate bars. A supply of KitKats was duly sourced to energise the jet-lagged travellers during their car journey from Heathrow to Bedfordshire…
Then, three days before Christmas, Covid came a-calling. In a short notice change to the original plan the Cheshire Three evacuated Cal Gal and Cal Guy Jnr back to Macclesfield.
Cal Son sent a map to explain the route of the UK Christmas travels, using KitKat as a metric.
Now road trips get measured not in miles but in hours and KitKats…
There was a first 2023 trip to inspect nb Cleddau, quietly spending her first winter at Crick Marina (a 1 KitKat trip). There she sat in still and cold-looking water but apart from a leaky porthole window and a failure on the solar panels all seemed well.
Then came a 3 KitKat trip, this time to Abergavenny, in mid-Wales.
Abergavenny is a small market town in Gwent. In its bustling market hall, below suspended cut outs of trees and cows, pigs and gambolling lambs, are many delights: eye catching jerkins, Welsh woven bedspreads – and all manner of hats handbags, guitars and goats’ cheeses…
Surprise! Surprise! Totally flabbergasted were Baby Sis and Cookerman – the planned quiet pub lunch was no other than a clan gathering, when by train, plane and road, siblings, offspring and others had secretly assembled to create a birthday party. Congratulations to the Bristol Nieces for pulling off such a stunning celebratory bash … and an opportunity for (from left) Senior Sis, Boatwif, Scottish Sis and Baby Sis to get together while all are in the same decade.
There were several narrowboats on winter moorings in Bancroft Basin where a few herring gulls were skating on ice. It was good to watch a boat on the move through the Tramway Bridge – and Canal and River Trust staff mounting new signs right beside Stratford Lock.
Inside the RSC building was another boat. Wrecked, an art installation, had been created from two inverted shopping trolleys and locally sourced trash. The design for the 2023 production of The Tempest was inspired by the 1607 storm surge that had driven up the Severn Estuary and the wild winds that had crossed the country eastwards and northwards. Prospero’s “island” was represented as an island of debris and flotsam, a hilltop land above a flooded landscape, a result of climate change and rising water levels.
The eco-friendly production had very limited costs – scenery had been recycled from other shows, as had all the costumes. Beach debris had come from Weston-super-Mare, litter from the town, trees from a local forest’s thinnings. Alex Kingston’s Prospero (the Duke of Milan and magician extraordinaire) plays her role as a powerful mother figure, presiding with Ariel over the chaos on the island. As ever at the RSC the performance thrilled its audience – what’s not to like about versatile and agile actors, live music, the creative use of stage and galleries, along with extraordinary sound and lighting effects…
Onward, then, to call in on Brum Cuz (a 1 KitKat journey) followed by a single wafer KitKat trip to see the Tentatrice crew.
The final leg of the road trip (2 KitKats) was south-east from Bromsgrove. On a slow and foggy morning wouldn’t a couple of Kit Kat chocolate bars inside the car have made that homebound journey just that bit more pleasant!
The mornings are lighter, the afternoons longer – hopefully it’ll be time soon to warm up Cleddau and set off for a gentle cruise along the Leicester Line.