The Golfer and The Writer: A Trip to Anstruthers, Center Parcs and a Lee Child’s novel

SUNDAY 12th OCTOBER 2014

St. Andrews Golf Course

St. Andrews Golf Course

Today is my last day of annual leave sob! After fifteen days off from the real world, I’m back to the day job tomorrow. The last two weeks have been very family orientated; the first week was a holiday to Anstruthers with the in-laws, followed by a week at Center Parcs with my family.

Lt Waters

Damian Lewis at the driving range at Carnoustie

On Sunday 28th September, the hubby and I packed up the car and made the three and a half hour trip to Anstruthers in Scotland, where we joined some close family and stayed at the gorgeous Cairnhill cottage. Anstruthers is an old fashioned fishing village along the Fife coast, located south of St Andrews. It boasts welcoming pubs, an amazing Indian restaurant, quirky little shops and fantastic fish and chips.

The holiday was centred around watching a couple of days of the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship golf. We spent the Thursday at St. Andrews Golf Course, where the hubby managed to see some professional golfers and I got to swoon at celebs like Jamie Redknapp and Michael Vaughan.

On the Friday, we visited Carnoustie golf course. We had been very fortunate weather-wise until this day, waking up to heavy rain and blustery winds so I (rather excitedly) put on my waterproofs. Feeling like I was a human duvet all snug and warm against the slanted rain, I was content to celeb-spot with the likes of Hugh Grant (who I just adore! It took me all my might to stop shouting ‘I loved you in Bridget Jones – and Love Actually!), Greg Kinnear (Friends/You’ve Got Mail), Kyle Machlachlan of Desperate Housewives fame, Damian Lewis of Homeland and Band of Brothers aswell as the number one golfer himself – Rory McIlroy.

Rory McIlroy at Carnoustie

Rory McIlroy at Carnoustie

During the stay at Cairnhill, there was the opportunity to really relax as the hubby watched the Ryder Cup and played golf with our future brother-in-law and my father-in-law. On that particular Ryder Cup Sunday, I picked up a copy of Lee Child’s ‘Worth Dying For’ from a shelf in the cottage. I sat out on the patio in the glorious late September sunshine with endless cups of tea and found that I couldn’t put this book down!

I read it in two days.

It’s my first Lee Child’s book – and won’t be my last.

He has an incredible way of writing factual information into the storyline and characters without you even realising it.  I love the structure of the story in this book; a lone guy who is hitch-hiking his way to Virginia, stops at a motel in rural Nebraska. What trouble could he possibly get caught up in from overhearing a drunken doctor’s phone call in a bar?

lee childIt’s a fast paced novel filled with suspense – definitely one of those ‘just one more chapter’ books. Jack Reacher manages to get caught up in a web of criminal activity as a result of the decision he makes that night in the bar. Who knew that accompanying the doctor to tend to a female victim of domestic violence would lead to solving a historic crime?

He could have just gone to bed and continued hitch-hiking the next day.

But that would make for a very boring story indeed.

Another feature I loved was how Lee Child doesn’t use the doctor (or his wife’s) name in the book, referring to them as ‘the doctor’ and ‘the doctor’s wife.’ By leaving them nameless it established the importance of their roles in the story.

sunset walk

Sunset walk to the pub in Anstruthers

An absolute must-read.

nephew nicec

My three little munchkins

The latter part of our holiday was spent in Sherwood Forrest Center Parcs with my dad and his partner, my two sisters, another future brother-in-law, my two nieces and nephew. It was amazing spending time as a family doing activities with the kids. This is the fourth time I’ve been to a Center Parcs; all other three occasions were at the Whinfell Forrest, two were for hen do’s and the other for my father-in-law’s sixtieth birthday. As they were all quite grown up events, it was great to see Center Parcs from the family perspective. We went swimming, walking, played on the park, visited the soft play (which was right next to the sports bar so incredibly handy!) did pottery painting and managed to squeeze in some bowling. There’s still so much more to do so we’ve vowed to make it an annual event.

 

Thanks for reading and have a great Sunday evening.

 

Love Missuswolf xxx

 

 

Missuswolf’s StoryLand….The Story So Far

THURSDAY 23rd AUGUST 2012

Well here I am everyone, it is exactly a year ago today since I embarked on my blog journey documenting my reading and writing through Missuswolf’s StoryLand.

What a year it has been!

It has seen me self publish my Children’s Story The Ruby Of Egypt (cheeky book plug opportunity – download/buy it here)

It has followed me through the reading of 26 books; from classics such as Pride and Prejudice to a variety of genre from Marian Keyes Chick-Lit, Stephen King Horror, and Patricia Cornwell Crime.

I have not only jumped on bandwagons and read The Fifty Shades Series, I have supported the works of fellow Indie Author’s on Twitter and downloaded their masterpieces too.

It has documented my attendance at Geek Club, a creative writing class I did last Autumn.

And finally, it captured my gruelling Novel Project 2012; to write a novel in 2 months back in January/February of 2012, Miss Pooshoe. She has endured round one of editing, is now being subjected to critical proof reading prior to another round of editing. I want this baby to perfect before she is unleashed to the world prior to the age of Three Zero.

Who would have thought a lovely ladies who lunch would lead to a blog being born on the advice of someone I see very little of, lives on the other side of the globe yet whom I now consider an inspirational guardian angel.

You know who you are.

I have loved every minute of my first blogging year and can’t wait to get stuck in and see what Year Two brings me.

So thanks to everyone who has followed me and supported me so far.

Love Missuswolf xxx

 

 

Windy Wasdale

MONDAY 30th APRIL 2012

I have just about recovered from an extremely exhausting but highly rewarding weekend. Friday afternoon saw me and the hubby embark on a camping adventure with two of our closest friends. We set off early afternoon for the Lake District for a lovely area called Wasdale Head.

wasdale

After a week or what can only be described as torrential downpour, the odds were definitely in our favour as the sun managed to squeeze its rays out and keep the rain at bay. The Wasdale Head Inn is the only hotel in the Wasdale Valley and is home of the British Rock climbing.

We set up camp (well, the boys set up the tent as us ladies sipped fizz from our fab plastic wine glasses) occasionally giving a helping hand as demonstrated below….

Ever seen that episode of Friends where Rachel appears to be helping hold the couch? Yup, I pulled that trick too 🙂

Once we had made ourselves at home (I was ITCHING to unpack! To make it homely – you know as you do when you first go into a hotel room? Anyone else do that?) Not that there was much to unpack; booze, food and sleeping bags. Done.

We headed over to the Wasdale Inn to fill our bellies with their delicious home-made food – I had Shepherd’s Pie with veg and home-made chips washed down with a lovely oaky glass of Chardonnay. De-light-ful! Then on to the tent for more booze and camp games; including Connect Four.

Friday night saw a pretty uneventful night’s sleep – however despite having been on night shift the night before and only having four hours sleep, I didn’t manage to get a lot of shut eye. I think my mind was working in over drive of all the what ifs; what if a meteorite hit the tent? what if one of the scary sheep from the field came and started eating us? What happened if a man wielding an axe came to the tent??

Saturday saw an early start as the wind picked up and flapped the tent; the sheep started talking to each other and a dog barking. Feeling a bit ropey through lack of sleep (plus a fuzzy wine head) I managed to pull myself around to have a bacon sarnie then prepare for the ultimate mission; to climb Scafell Pike. Waterproofed up and layered to the max, we started our adventure up Scafell Pike….only to realise we had taken a slight detour from the original path and needed to climb a few fences, strategically move over some barbed wire and then trek up a steep incline – equalling a very hard and sweaty start.

Not to be disheartened, we continued our trek to the top – which was both mentally and physically challenging. Me and the hub managed it in two and a half hours and the relief that was felt at the top and the sense of achievement was overwhelming.

Woohoo we did it!!

However, what goes up, must come down. And down we came, along the steepest part of the mountain in which I spent most of it sliding on my bum (fondly nicknamed ‘The Slug’ by the hub) The feeling of relief once we finally reached the tent was amazing.

After a quick hot shower, it was back into the pub for another lovely meal and a celebratory drink before settling in the tent for the night. However, after the luck we had with the weather during the day – sunny intervals, no rain and only a slight breeze, Mr Wind decided to well and truly pick up and it blew a hooly all night! So much so our side of the tent collapsed! Unbelievably the hubby slept through it all as once again my paranoid mind thought I was going to get trapped and die of suffocation, hence me having my hands on the tents zip so I could make a swift exit if required!

Another early start saw us eating bacon sarnies and drinking tea as the men took the tent down [we did tidy up the stuff from inside before hand – using the grand excuse that we would purchase the breakfast from the Happy Campers Cafe as our escape route 😉 ]

P.S note how all the other tents are upright and barely moving!

With ice picks for hands, we hacked away at putting everything in the car and then set sail back to the North East. What a hoot of a weekend, one I will never forget and that has made me learn a bit more about myself. I am pleased I pushed myself to the limits to climb Scafell Pike and I must admit, I well and truly have the hiking bug!

Next stops, Snowdonia and maybe even Ben Nevis! Plus there’s always the possibility of a story to come out of it…Scafell Frights!

Only kidding, or maybe not, maybe that’s why I couldn’t sleep…..

A fab weekend with fab friends

Love Missuswolf xxx

Images by Emma Buckton