Tuesday, 7 October 2014


This is our last month here before we decamp to sunnier climes so it just gets filled with various kinds of farewells.

Visits and lunches with friends all back up at the end of the month so we see them as close as we can to leaving.  Among all this we try to get 'stuff' sorted so we aren't leaving problems behind.  That, of course, never works.  

This time we left in the middle of trying to arrange for someone to take my aunt out once a week from her care home (been here in Naples a week so far and heard nothing!).  This is fraught enough back in the UK but trying to contact all the various agencies from the States isn't to be contemplated.

I have also left in the middle of the doctor trying to determine if I have Fibromyalgia or Polymyalgia rheumatica.  As I have been presenting with various problems for four years now(!!!) I don't feel there is a rush on this ...... but it doesn't help in terms of continuity to have the 'conversation' and tests separated with a five month gap.

All kinds of mini domestic issues get snagged by absence.  One example is that we are part of a group who are trying to get the Lotty up and running properly.  Quite literally while in transit from UK to Naples via Orlando Ken was trying help with a funding application.

None of this is to be interpreted as my complaining about my lot but I hope it helps you to understand why the peripatetic life we live drives me nuts.  That is complaining isn't it?

Back to September and the good stuff.

The second week of the month we were in Leswalt, near Stranraer, Scotland with my daughter and her partner.  This is on a peninsular I sort of didn't even know existed let alone turning out to be the most southerly point of Scotland and benefitting from the Gulf Stream.  All in all it was a very unexpected bit of Scotland full of exotic plants.  it is not straightforward to get to and certainly not an area you would be 'passing' en route to any where else.

We visited a lighthouse at the Mull of Galloway.......... well three made it to the top........ I wandered off to the shop and museum.

view from the top

As you can see we had some lovely weather - Scotland was very kind to us.

As fully-fledged intrepids we then went on to Logan Botanical Gardens - pretty well-known on the planet of gardeners.

very tropical for Scotland
I understand why gardens like these are lovely and unusual but they are not to my taste - I don't get on with 'tropicals' outside the Tropics.  I am a decided traditionalist when it comes to gardens.  I can appreciate them all but the only thing that sings to my soul is the soft fluffy English variety.

This was a very short break for S and S and they left us the next day and Ken and I went to Castle Kennedy - primarily for lunch!  That went well as this was the venue....

That said we had a good hike and it was all very pretty in a wild and woody way.


If you want to see more photos click here Galloway Gardens

I am flicking through my diary as I do when I write this and it is crammed with 'chores' of various sorts so clearly it was a busy month - just nothing worth sharing unless you want to hear about hair appointments and chasing up snagging et al.

Lunch and farewell with my best mate mid-month and then S & S returned to visit us and my daughter's lifetime friend.  It was a lovely visit and felt like they were just living round the corner with them bobbing in and out between doing other stuff.  I so wish that was true.  It is always hard to say goodbye, even it it is only for a couple of months.

Lucky us!  they left us with a giant bear to take to the States for my grand-daughter.  My daughter won it!

Here is Ted on his first leg of a several thousand mile journey from S in Scotland to L in Canada via Naples, (and Orlando) Florida.

We became the weird old couple with a bear in the car.  I won't share the photo of him in the suitcase on the 29th as he looks decidedly uncomfortable.

Here comes the 29th and we left for Orlando.

We had a Premium Economy Upgrade which really does make the journey so much better - the advantages being - better service, smaller section of the cabin, deplane first without the rugby scrum and - being really snotty - the Orlando flight gets more than its fair share of Children passengers but not so much in this section.  Not that I am anti-children per se but, having had a couple of VERY long journeys with a child behind driving me bonkers - think feet in back of seat for nine hours, they are best avoided.  So there we were smugly settled in our 'posh' seats and the barbie family arrive across the aisle - Barbie mom and two teenage Barbie's - though to be fair they had so much work they could have been thirty-five.  The one nearest me - just across the aisle had a nasal high pitched squeak which barely let up for the whole trip.

I have reached the inevitable conclusion that the next step for me is a cave somewhere with my own juniper bush.  I just basically hate the human race.  This was confirmed some days later when we were in a half empty Naples and I realised it was a lovely place to be.

As we were flying backwards in time we arrived in Orlando for an all-you-can-eat-until-you fall-over buffet for 'dinner' at 5.30pm (!) with a body clock ticking at 10.30 pm.  Such fun this travel lark!

The next day was the last of the month and we used it driving down to Naples.... we were there by lunchtime (Cracker Barrel) and by bedtime we were well and truly, unpacked, tidied up, basic shopped and sorted out ready to begin the winter.

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