Family and friends

On Friday the 9th Mark came to our hotel and we had breakfast together. I had a hearty meal knowing that we would not stop on our road trip back to London. Together we went to Denton Hall Turret.

This is part of Hadrian’s Wall and something I really wanted to see part of. As it was snowing we decided to go for a warming drink. We also needed to shop for some padkos and went to Morrisons. After we did our shopping we sat down in the café and had hot chocolate (£5.25). We dropped Mark off at home and left Newcastle at 10h30, driving past the Angel of the North. We had one pit stop at a Sainsbury’s for espressi (£3) and arrived in London at 15h45. We checked into our B&B and relaxed before changing for Shul. The service was quite different to the last Friday night service I went to. After that we went for a family meal at Jon’s parents. They had put on quite a spread and there were 23 of us there for dinner.

On Saturday morning I went to Shul and Dave went into London. He wanted to know more about his train and I could see no reason for him to sit through the morning Service. Joshua did fantastically well in reading his Torah portion. After his Bar Mitzvah service we had snacks at the Shul and then I went back to Talya for lunch. Dave fetched me and we relaxed before heading over to Bushey to see Adam, Cara, Noa and Jude. From there it was off to Joshua’s party. We were treated to an amazing evening of good food and wine, and fantatic company. How blessed Dave and I were to be a part of this simcha.

Sunday morning we popped in at Talya and Jon at 9h30. We had wanted to go shopping before leaving London but the shops only open at 11am on a Sunday! At 10h40 we made our way to Anne and Stuart. They put on a delicious feast for us. Roast lamb with all the trimmings and a crumble for dessert. We spent the entire afternoon talking and catching up and I got to spend more time with my Aunt. It is special to see Evie, my mom’s sister. We left for Heathrow at 16h30. For some reason the petrol gauge was on its own mission. We had put in £10 (7.94L) in the morning and when we left Abingdon the readout said we had 55 miles left in the tank. This was the exact distance to Europcar so Dave did not want to risk running out of fuel. We put in £6.01 (4.63L) and the readout went down to 35 miles! So, we stopped again and put in another £5 (3.29L) and the readout did not budge. Dave had a pitstop and when he got back into the car and restarted it the readout jumped from empty to 175 miles left in the tank! We wanted to give the car back as empty as possible as we pay for the full tank option where Europcar are responsible for putting in fuel. We arrived at their depot at 18h05 and caught the bus to terminal 2. There was no-one at the Premium check-in so that went smoothly. My LAGS were checked at security by the friendliest security official we have come across while travelling. After that we headed for the lounge and got sorted out before going to taste and buy some whisky. We then went back to the lounge and relaxed before our flight. This was the fourth flight in a row where our inflight entertainment system was not working. As we had paid for exit row seats we chose not to move but that of course did not leave Dave with anything to watch while I slept.

I managed 3 hours and 40 minutes of sleep which left me feeling exhausted when we landed. We breezed through passport control, collected and dropped off our luggage and went straight to the lounge. Dave started with breakfast and I went for a shower. Feeling clean and refreshed I sat down to catch up on emails. By the time we got into Cape Town at 15h00 I was ready for bed! We still had to come in to work, unpack and eat dinner. And by evening I was feeling sick. Which is why I have been remiss in writing about the last few days. We had an amazing holiday!