Sunday, November 25, 2012

I'm currently at Sandbach Services ...

... which seems to be something of my spiritual home when I'm in the UK.

This isn't it, of course. This is Newhaven Harbour, where I arrived late on Friday night and home of the famous interchange -
Yours Truly: "is that passport OK then?"
Immigration Official: "yes, it's fine"
Yours Truly: "good - I'll print out some more of them then when I return home"
 - and everything else that followed as sure as night follows day because Government Officials have totally  lost any sense of humour they might once have had, which is another sad sign of the times.

A stop at Coulsdon Services, brand-new on the M25, to have a wash and brush-up (yes, I'm funny like that) and then through the fog and mist to Hemel Hempstead and a handy lay-by on the A414.

Saturday morning saw me bright-eyed and bushy-tailed round at Trixi's. I haven't seen her since 1972 and doesn't Facebook have a lot to answer for? Back in those days she had gorgeous long hair right down to her waist but of course that was 40 years ago. Anyway, we caught up with old times, sang a few songs together and went for lunch at a neighbouring cafe. Ahhh - nostalgia isn't what it used to be.

In the evening I went to Hatfield to see how Katherine, Liz's daughter, was doing. I promised Liz that I would keep an eye on Kit and make sure that she was okay. Of course, it's not easy to do that with living in a different country but I do what I can. We ended up going for a meal and she filled me in on all of her latest doings.

Strawberry Moose was of course pleased to see his big sister, and they had a very long chat about their time in Canada together because, of course, he stayed on in 2010 after I came home.

From here I drove up the M1 in the driving wind and rain to another little hidey-hole I know off the A43 near Northampton - somewhere that has featured regularly on these pages. And not a wink of sleep did I have as the howling gale and torrential rain crashing down on the roof of Caliburn kept me awake all night.

I spent much of the day catching up on things that I needed to order on the internet. Yes, Roadchef Services really do come up trumps in this respect, and then up here to dig myself in while things sort themselves out. But it wasn't that easy. I hit something on the M6 and blew a tyre out. And when you have two fair tyres, one borderline, and one that needs replacing, you can bet your life that it was one of the good ones that went.

So tomorrow, add to my list of tasks the one about going to McGuiness's to see if they have a wheel and tyre, and if not, who might have some.

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