B to A to B. 11th May

The Boathouse

Not quite up to yesterdays standards, but not bad.

In Scarborough the alarm was set early, last of the house jobs to be done, then pack up and leave in time for the train to York. There I chose to walk the straight route to the hospital, over Scarborough Rail Bridge, up St Mary’s, through the grounds of Bootham Hospital and into the main hospital site.

During my last eye test pre-pandemic the optician hadn’t been happy with something, she wanted me to have further tests done which could only happen at a hospital. I was referred, had my appointment changed several times during 2020 but finally got to be seen that December.

I was diagnosed with Drusen a build up of lipids and protein near the optic nerve. Some drusen occur naturally with age, others can be a sign of macular degeneration. Today was a follow up appointment, I had had to chase the hospital up regarding it, but I was here at last.

Big letters

Last time I had all sorts of tests done, eye drops, photos, it took ages. Today I had to read the usual eye test chart in area B. Then go to area A where I had a periphery sight test, a full five minutes of trying to spot the little dots. Back to area B where I was very quickly seen by Mr M Moosa. He shone the BIG light into each eye in turn. There had been no change to my Drusen so he was happy to discharge me and I should now mention it when visiting the opticians. Quite a relief.

What was York County Hospital where my Dad spent a month in a plaster cast in 1976

Now because I had booked a cheap ticket I had over four hours to kill in my home town. What to do? What to see? I became a tourist, but one with local knowledge and did a bit of shopping too as it’s someone’s birthday soon! Shh!!!

I walked round places I have known and loved. The pub the amateur dramatics used to frequent is all boarded up. A great family friends old flat is up for sale.

A visit to Barnetts, a must when in York (really it is!), they had some drawer handle screws that we needed for the freezer.

I followed a busker through the streets until he set up camp at the top of The Shambles to play his squeeze box, sing and jig a puppet around. I was relieved that Margaret Clitherow‘s house was still there and not been taken over by more Harry Potter tat shops.

Grape Lane, Coffee Yard. Up to the Minster’s south transept where I corrected a couple who thought that York Bar Walls only stretched from Goodramgate to Bootham Bar! I ended up having quite a chat with them suddenly feeling like a local again not a tourist.

The South Transept

After a sit down on the Minster steps I discovered that there is a Cat Trail around the city, two black cats sitting high up on buildings on Goodramgate.

A local architect Tom Adams had black cats put on his buildings, but there are many more that date back before his time. I knew of some, but certainly not all.

A meander around York wouldn’t be right without going through the Museum Gardens and down to the river. Here a chap adjusted his tyre fenders. Plenty of space today, only three narrowboats and one cruiser, sadly no ice cream boat!


Have to admit I was very glad of the sit down on the train back to Peterborough where it had been raining most of the day and Mick had even lit the stove. Mick had used the wind and rain as an excuse to not change the oil and filters on Oleanna as his back would have got wet!

0 locks, 0 miles, 2 trains, 9 miles walked, 1 house cleaner, 2 eyes discharged, 1 relieved designer, 4 hours being a tourist, 4 boats, 1 very warm boat to come home to.