Sue had booked the Friday off work, so we were able to have a lie-in and a leisurely breakfast before packing and then set off around midday. After a spot of lunch, we arrived at the Passage House Hotel around 2.30. It was one of the hottest days in April so we went next door to the Passage House Inn and sat in their garden on the riverbank with a view of the roadway into the hotel to await the arrival of our fellow weekenders. It was too hot to sit in the sun and a little chilly in the shade so frequent swapping of seats resulted!
We were joined a little later by Tom and then Peter followed by Rosie. Andrew and Jacqui arrived some time before Gordon and Di and Maureen because Gordon had been working. We had booked a late evening meal so we were able to have a short chat before we went to eat. The meal finished too late for us to gather for games, but Jacqui and Andrew dragged me into a game of Rummikub, which I had never played before and therefore did not win.
Saturday morning we came down to breakfast to find Tom and Peter already well into the full English breakfast which became more extended as the party gathered. After breakfast we all went our separate ways. Sue and I went into Newton Abbot where we dodged a light shower (well it was nearly summer!) and raided the charity shops. I was able to find a couple of books to fill spaces in trilogies I intend reading. After lunch we went back to the hotel, where Sue sat in the conservatory and read, while I went for a walk along the estuary and across Hackney Marsh to the rear of the racecourse. Afterwards we had a swim in the hotel indoor pool which we had to ourselves. We went back to our room so I could get the football results and there was a thunderstorm outside which one or two of our party were caught out in.
After the evening meal we gathered in a meeting room for a quiz which Rosie had brought. Di, Gordon and Maureen formed one team, Tom, Andy and Jacqui another, and Sue and I teamed up with Peter, who provided most of our answers so we finished top.
Sunday Morning was another fine, hot, sunny day. After breakfast we went to the Methodist/United Reform church in Newton Abbot. They made us very welcome and after joining them for tea and coffee we went back to the Passage House Hotel for a carvery lunch. Some had other places to be so we did not linger long before saying our goodbyes and making our ways home.
It was a very enjoyable weekend. To be able to meet together socially rather than at meetings where the business has priority, or at competitions where we are always so busy, is so pleasant. The ability to do as you please made this a very restful weekend for me, and I don’t get many of those. I recommend this time together to any leader or partner in the District.
The pictures show a view of the estuary from the decking at the hotel, and us waiting for dessert at the Inn at Sunday lunch.