Friday, June 2, 2023

Home safely

Thanks for your kind wishes in comments on my last post. I am home, in some discomfort but I'll be fine. A good night's sleep will help. See you all next week.

Thursday, June 1, 2023


I made a start with our holiday posts but today I have surgery at a hospital and then on Saturday we journey to the Surf Coast where we will celebrate the twin boys' first birthday. We have booked to stay overnight. Hopefully I will be ok to go.

Mother is feeling constantly sick in the stomach, which began after her stay in hospital while we were overseas. She hopes to readmitted to hospital today. A substantial dose of a good anxiety medication might solve many of her problems. It is not that our medical system won't look after her; she constantly self diagnoses and won't take medications because 'they make me feel sick'. Well, she is feeling sick regardless. She is impossible at times.

So, probably no more posts for a few days.

This cocky greeted me a day or two after we returned from overseas. 

"Hello Andrew. I've missed seeing you on the balcony".

It walked along the balcony railing to get a closer view of me.

"You appear to have survived your overseas adventure."

"Yes, thanks, and thanks for the welcome home."

Wednesday, May 31, 2023

England 24-25 April

We caught a taxi to the airport, and let me remind you how I despise airports. It was however a smooth enough process. For some reason economy passengers were loaded before business class passengers, but no matter to us as we were in the airline's lounge waiting to be called. Free food, free drinks and tarmac views from comfortable seating.

As it was our first time travelling business class there were lots of new things to learn. Before take off we were given champers and the staff were all very pleasant, friendly and helpful. Our flight departed late afternoon so we were looking forward to a nice meal and a sleep in the flat beds, which is exactly what we had. The control buttons for the seat to make it stretch out into a bed needed such a hard push, but R's didn't and none of subsequent flights had such stiff controls. It was nice to have a decent sized entertainment screen but the film selections weren't that great, with a focus on American bang bang films and god awful American comedy shows. I did find the Kenneth Branagh versions of Murder on the Orient express (I always forget who dun it) and Death on the Nile. I can never get past David Suchet as Poirot. 

We did not have to collect our cases at Colombo, Sir Lanka as they were going straight through. We did have to pack our backpacks carefully so that we had what we needed for the 12 hour stopover in Colombo. 

The usual grumpy and expressionless border security staff sent us back to fill in incoming passenger cards and I had already arranged our ETA's, like a visa, for two days. There weren't queues, with plenty of border staff.  

We expected someone to be there to greet us with our names on sign boards but no. We had to find the booth that would arrange our transport to our hotel. I think it was a least half an hour from when we cleared security to when our transport arrived. It is the airlines responsibility but the service is provided by the hotel. It wasn't good enough, and naturally in time the airline will hear about it. 

A rather attractive lad led us out to the street to wait for our transport and did the usual subtle con as we waited for our transport. He claimed to have not seen Australian money notes. We knew what he was up to. R showed him a $10 note and he seriously admired it. R put the note back in his wallet and showed the lad a $5 note, and told the lad to keep it. He was quite sweet. 

The hotel was a fifteen minute drive away and it was set in a huge and lush tropical garden, some manicured and some not. A guard at the gate checked under our vehicle with a mirror for 'la bombe'. The hotel was fantastic. It was my and EC's favourite weather of course, hot and humid but not so bad at night. Yes, I am lying.

We had requested a room with twin beds. Instead we had a room each with a queen and single bed. In the shower I failed to notice the overhead monster rain shower head, as you had pull out a rod to make it work. (Foreign plumbing drives me mad) Instead I made do with the hand held shower. We had some buffet food and drinks at the hotel, included, and I can't remember the times now. A youngish waiter charmed us. His English was excellent and he had lived in Italy in the past. The staff were a bit more friendly and interactive than is my preference. We vant to be alone. We were advised a too early time to be at reception for our transport to the airport. There was so many security procedures at the airport, including our vehicle driving over an electronic checking machine to check for 'la bombe'. 

Our flight left a little after midnight. After dinner and a couple of drinks I fell soundly asleep and R had to wake me after the flight attendant failed to.

We landed at Heathrow at about 9.30 pm on the 25th. 

I barely took any photos. This is the fountain in front of the wonderful hotel in Colombo.

It was a hard call as to whether to sit outside in the heat under fans or inside with air con.

The pool looked so inviting. 

I am not sure where this was, whereby a robot moved around cleaning the floor.

A phone box. We must be at Heathrow, London. 

Window Wankers

Some of you may remember me complaining about the apartment occupants to my immediate front having their windows open, well mostly the one a...