Hi All, Sorry we haven’t posted recently but we haven’t been in one place for long enough! A nine hour drive across France was followed by a night in the car, a tremendous thunderstorm on the ferry, and an unexpected diversion to a hotel when our accommodation plans went I very awry. Goodwood week, so not many rooms about and all at premium prices. Premier Inns, who advertise rooms for 29 pounds were charging 116 per night! Simon and Shari then very kindly stepped into the breach for four nights, and we had a great time catching up with them and getting some of our more important jobs out of the way. We then moved to Nikki’s house for a couple of nights. It has been great to see the grandchildren again and we are sorry that we couldn’t find more time to spend with them on this trip. They are growing up so fast! We then went on to a very pleasant stay with Sue and John Martell. If Boris loses interest, John could be the next on the list to run the country! We went to an open mike night with them and Gavin and Nikki, which was much better than we thought it would be. Gavin sang, and Nicky backed him on one song which sounded really good. Great that they have a really nice group of friends now, and it would be fantastic to hear them singing more harmony together.
We made a quick detour for a coffee with Jan and Christie who have their usual house full of itinerant Antipodeans and after a horrible drive round the M25 and up the M1 we are currently in Sheffield, staying at Ann’s sister Ros’s house. It has an amazing Sybaritic bathroom, with whistles, gongs, stereo sound, Jacuzzi and pressure jets in the shower. We won’t be going out much! We had dinner in the garden with Ann’s mum last night. She seems much better than she was, and was in excellent conversational form. Looking forward to a few days chilling out before going on to Roger’s.
So, what have we noticed after being away a year? Everything seems to be incredibly expensive, with a round of drinks costing about the same as a three course meal for two with wine in Spain. The roads are unbelievably busy, and drivers less considerate than ever. There seem to be more people speaking and acting aggressively towards each other, there is more money about than before we left, and technology seems to have moved on about five years. Television is still rubbish despite the screens getting bigger, people are still obsessed with the price of property, and I’ve lost the taste for warm beer. We are enjoying being here and seeing everybody, but I don’t think we feel it is home any more. We are both looking forward to buying a place in France so that we can use it as a base for more travelling. All the best for now, Andy.