Saturday, December 15, 2007

Back in England

I write to you from Bridge Farm Britford, back in England.

Getting here was a bit problematic, though. We left the Apollo Hotel at about quarter to ten and got to the airport at about 10 past ten. So far so good. We left the hire car (good car, thank you!) in the car park, as instructed, dropped the keys into the key box and went to check in. So far, ok, though we noticed that some of the early planes had been delayed or cancelled. The man at check in said they were expecting our flight to leave on time - - but!

We went through to the departure lounge. And remembered that Jersey is not in the EU so we could do duty free shopping. Cautiously, for we are not made of money and our bank accounts are beginning to look a bit sick. Plus, plane after plane was being cancelled, including the one immediately before ours but nearly 2 hours away (I assume because the incoming flight had been cancelled). Others were being delayed. We decided not to run too much amok in the duty free shop because if our flight were cancelled we would need to return all our purchases to the shop (and who knew how long it would take to recredit my bank account) and we would need, presumably, to pay for another night’s accommodation. And food.

I’m not absolutely sure what the problem was. They kept talking about the severely adverse weather conditions. Agreed, it was a bit foggy, but visibility didn’t seem that bad to me. However, no doubt they know what they’re doing, and I emphatically don’t want to be flying if it is not safe!

Mercifully, our flight left. And on time. It was a perfectly untroubled flight and we landed nice and smoothly, bang on time.

As we were leaving last Monday, going into the departure lounge, The Builder said: Did I lock the car? Well, I hadn’t noticed, but assumed he had. He normally does it automatically. We pondered this question from time to time while we were away, but didn’t fret too much. No point fretting about something you can do nothing about. We approached the car on our return. “Try the door handle” said The Builder. No need. The little red flashed “locked door” light wasn’t on. Oops. We’d left all the Wiltshire/Hampshire Christmas presents in the boot while we were away. Gingerly, I opened the boot. Hooray! All the presents were still there!!! Mind you, if I were planning to raid a car boot, it wouldn’t be in a carefully monitored airport carport!

Reunited with the Vixen (and with Jenny, who hadn’t enjoyed being left in the (unlocked!!!!) freezing boot all week; her battery was flashing red, if the car’s light hadn’t been), we took off down to Salisbury. I am oh so, oh so glad we hadn’t tried to take off from central England. It was freezing cold, 0d, and covered in freezing fog and very dark and gloomy with almost no visibility even at 2pm. Even so, we had a remarkably easy run down and arrived in Salisbury around 5 o’clock. Call into Waitrose for another picnic and on to Bridge Farm for a Quiet Night In. In fact, The Builder slept through most of the early evening and I was in bed by nine. It seemed to have been quite a tiring day, despite the fact that we hadn’t really done anything very much.

Norma does do a lovely breakfast. It helps that it’s cooked as you ask for it. But she does a magnificent fried egg, to the point that even when we go to equivalent B&Bs, I still come away saying: that was a lovely breakfast, but the egg wasn’t a patch on Norma’s. She’s close to retirement age. But I’m sorry; she can’t retire ever, ever, ever!

Really enjoyed our time in Jersey. Will go again, but perhaps for a long weekend rather than 5 days. I’m not sure Jenny would have been much help with the navigating, though. I think she would have been as confused by the maps, which suggested that you would be going straight on when in fact you were doing a tight right turn onto a tiny road, as I was.

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