We thought it would be a good idea to visit Europe in the summer, since I'd only ever seen her in the dark dead of winter. Which I love.
But the summer?
Oh its all shiny and sparkly and covered in smartie flavoured flowers! And I can totally believe in fairies and talking trees and jacket wearing rabbits in the English summer countryside!
Its always something getting used to driving a little car when we get to the developed world. The engine is so quiet. Sometimes you think its not on and try to restart it. And when you try and touch the clutch, you put your great big foot on all three pedals at once. And the breaks? You only need to use your big toe! Well, I say this as if I drive in England. Noooo. You wouldn't catch me dead driving in that scary traffic. Well, actually you would.
Give me a big old landrover and scary African city driving any time. The driving here may be crazy with people overtaking overtaking cars and cutting in and basically driving into you if you're not on your toes and anticipating each driver's move within a 200 metre radius, but at least people expect you to make mistakes. In Europe or wherever everything goes so smoothly. If you did make a mistake you'd be the crumpled one on the side of the highway that causes the tailback and that everyone rubbernecks at as they go past. No no, not for me. Luckily (since we were doing a road trip through Europe) the husband loves to drive.
So we landed at Heathrow and picked up our wee car. And the other thing? How can you tell which car is yours in a crowded parking lot? They all look the same. (Yes yes, I'm a girl I know). Okay, so the time difference is only two hours but having woken up at four that morning, and having been on an all day flight with a squirming one year old we thought it would be a great idea to go and spend the night at a mate's house in London and have a party. I mean why not, right? The gathering of the clans. And the last time we'd seen most of them we were being crazy, climbing trees and drinking copious amounts of beer on an elephant dung infested dry river bed in the middle of a national park. And now we see them and most of us are all familied up. Kids. Cars full of broken plastic dinosours and armbands. But not above drinking copious amounts of beer. And climbing trees and playing cricket with said elephant dung if there was any around. Right? Or at least taking about it. So in with a bang and it was great.
Part of our mission on this trip was to go and visit all the rellies. Many of whom I've only met a couple of times - most of whom are pushing a hundred but we thought it would be fun to go and see them all, introduce them to the baby gal. A victory lap of sorts.
But first stop middle of England somewhere, spent a week with my parents-in-law. Shop. Eat. Shop. Eat.
Next stop Cornwall to visit my 89 year old grandmother.