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Our busiest weekend of the year so far – in a good way!

First stop was our return visit to the hidden gem of outdoor theatrical productions – Kilworth House Theatre Group in err, Kilworth – and their production of Sister Act.

Jo, Janet, Carol, Nick and Celina joined us for an evening of superb production values, excellent acting, and of course, some great songs. The quality of the singing was, I’d say, a notch higher than Kilworth’s normal superb standard, and the standing ovation at the end confirmed it!

Nice one Kilworth, you did it again!!!
High five

Sister Act at Kilworth House Theatre, September 2014
The Stage is Set…

It was good to see the show so well supported – but it meant that the car-park was heaving.  We were expecting to have to wait ages to get out, but no so, as the uber-efficient car-park Marshalls did their job well, and we were soon on the A14, heading home.

Early-ish to bed as another day of culture beckons tomorrow! (Oh, the pain!)

After a brief visit to Richard’s Autos for the obligatory MOT on Ann’s Mercedes, we then headed for Stamford, and The Burghley Horse Trials to meet up with Nick and Celina. We’d not been before, but Nick and Celina are great fans. It was a dull day weather-wise, but that didn’t stop the gazillion-or-so people from every direction, heading for Burghley House, resulting in a long tailback all the way from Collyweston! Still, we got their in one piece at just before 12.30.

After parking, we followed the smell of manure and the ‘challenging’ signage. The whole event is obviously geared towards those who go every year, and not people like us, who needed some form of indication to point us in the right direction. Even the sign to the signs was difficult to find!

Staff seemed to be just as confused, and we were sent off in completely the wrong direction (twice), attempting to track down where Nick and Celina were. Mobile calls were impossible, as (O2 at least), buckled under the pressure of so many people trying to call each other. This resulted in us not being able to ring our friends to find out where they were. Text messages were delayed by at least an hour, just to add to the challenge!

Welcome to 2014 Burghley Horse Trials!!
Baring teeth smile

Thousands of People… very little signage… chaos!

Traffic was ‘bumper-to-bumper’

Yes, as expected, every man, woman and dog was there (in fact, there were more dogs, than horses!) and in spite of feeling lost for most of the event, it was great fun wandering around. In between the horsey-bits, we took a gander at many (and varied) food stalls – and extensively tested their samples!!! With careful planning, i reckon it would be perfectly possible to have lunch there – just by carefully selecting the stalls and their wares!

But of course, the main reason for the event itself, was the horses and their riders – and they didn’t disappoint. I don’t think I’ve been that close to man, woman and horse in such perfect harmony before! Seeing the way they controlled such powerful animals, was a joy to watch – it even looked liked the horses were enjoying themselves too! (maybe).
Winking smile

A Man on a Horse

A Man on a Fast Horse

A Man on a Slow Horse

Another Man on another Horse

Ordinarily, that would be quite enough entertainment for us two in a single weekend, but, in the evening we bravely carried on, heading for Kettering Leisure Village and The Lighthouse Theatre to see Grease, starring our good friends’ Tom and Julie’s  son, Nick in the lead role as Danny Zuko. It was a great performance from everyone, with the whole of the cast looking like they were really enjoying themselves throughout.

Nick got a standing ovation at the end – especially well-deserved, as this was his FIRST performance EVER in a Musical AND, he’d never acted before either, in front of an audience!! Amazing! Grease IS the word!!!

Curtain up at 7.30!

Nick T takes centre stage
Nick enjoys a well-earned standing ovation

After the production, it was all back to Tom and Julie’s for a post-performance celebration. I think most of Kettering were there, and T and J’s legendary hospitality swung into action as literally a 100+ people filled their kitchen and patio. It was a real party atmosphere, and Nick arrived about 20 minutes later to another very large, and well deserved round of applause!

Brochure - Grease September 2014

Phew! Off to bed at 11.45pm, recharging our batteries for tomorrow…

Ahh, Sundays – the day of rest and an opportunity to relax, spending all day reading the papers, and generally doing not-very-much…

Except us two! 8.30am (zzzzzzzzz!), destination, Rockingham Speedway and the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship. I can’t believe we’ve lived nearby for years, and this was our first visit – especially as I’m already a part-time petrol-head! We met up with Chris, Steve (thanks for organising it all!)and Denise, Steve’s son Joe and his girlfriend, Lorna.

It was a full-on, all-day affair – 9am until round until 7pm (although we only stayed until about 2.30). The weather was unexpectedly warm for most of it, and that made the event even more enjoyable. The day featured a variety of races, not just the BTCC, and we even manage to get a seat in the main Grandstand, almost in the centre, for the perfect view.

On your Marks…

A Perfect View of the Action

Boys and their Toys – 1

Boys and their Toys – 2 🙂

A Pit walkabout

The Victory Podium

The Winner!

It was a great day – even Ann, who doesn’t ‘get’ all the fuss about lumps of metal racing round in a circle, conceded she’d had a great time! Praise indeed!!!

Phew! What a weekend! I need a day off, just to recover from all this weekend’s activity! (and remember, the problem with retirement is that you NEVER get a day off!)

Any comments?