Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Back a week

This is primarily a reminder for folk who look out for me at the end of the month that I am now writing as and when the mood takes me; so October has already been done in bits and pieces if you want to flit back through.

If you want to see photos of our leaving Naples they are here for a while:  Leaving 257

........  but, as I am here.........

We have been English now for a week and it has been just lovely.  We are experiencing totally cliché autumn weather - blue skies, wet underfoot and a distinct nip in the air.  Even a hint of November fogs are beginning to roll in.

We arrived home in the early hours of last Monday (26th Oct) after a pretty miserable flight.  Just as we were taxiing for take-off (spot on time) we turned off the runway and headed back to the airport.  Someone had been taken ill (had a fit) on our flight and needed to be taken off the plane.  Handy hint don't get taken ill - took nearly half an hour to get back in and for an air bridge to be connected to the plane.  The passenger and his companion were 'offloaded' but then their four bags had to be found!  We were on the tarmac from boarding to eventual take off for three hours.  Added to an eight-hour overnighter this was certainly no fun at all.  As the cabin crew said 'better now than a diversion in flight'.  Mind you we do fly over my son's home in St John's (NL) so that would have done us nicely.

The minimal Thomas Cook service was repeated on our trip back.  We will try never to fly with them again, especially long haul.

We did still make it back to the house in time for my grocery delivery from Tesco (ordered in Naples).  Deep joy, grocery delivered plus English food.... not to mention the convenience of even being able to order other stuff from their store such as a slow cooker.

I had remembered that my English one was looking a bit dog-eared and could do with replacing.  What I hadn't remembered, thanks to shifting homes every five minutes, was that I had already done that before leaving for the USA.

Never mind - just a simple return five minutes down the road and any way I wanted to pick up the clothes I had ordered (also from Naples)  for Click and Collect.  Don't you love civilisation.

Our little one person (get to know her) cleaner arrived the next day to kick-start our future routines.  A very different feel to the barrage of different-every-time cleaners (as many as four) who arrive in Naples to do our cleaning.  By the time T arrived we had also managed to unpack our four huge cases plus two small ones and tuck everything hither and yon.

Following lunch out, we did a bit of  local shop the next day for this and that which included potted plants - a rarity in my homes for fifteen years as they have to be binned every few months when we shift homes.  Not any more - I can have what I want.... even an orchid!  I also picked up plants and bulbs for winter pots; another experience I have done without for many years.

We squeezed in a quick catch up with friends before embarking on this lot.

I spent the next couple of days moving stuff from A to B to C which entailed moving the stuff that moved out of those letters on to D and E and F.  I think we are now all sorted - for a while any way.

By Friday we were trawling around Ikea checking out this and that for the great updating of the house which is about to take place.  It took us seven hours and a lot of money spent and a full car only to realise we hadn't actually solved any of the queries we had arrived with.... and, of course, we now need to return things!

On Sunday 1st November we had a great day out at Dunham Massey.  If you are local and can get there, go and visit their war exhibition it is absolutely the very best piece of such work that I have seen.  The house was used for injured troops and housed the Stamford Military Hospital.

on the ward © The University of Manchester

After two exhilarating, emotional and unforgettable years, the Stamford Hospital will close its doors for the final time on Wednesday 11 November.
It's your final chance to visit and hear the stories of the soldiers who stayed here and the nurses who treated them, brought to life by actors, objects and original archive material.

We had a lovely lunch, met up with my best friend and walked around the gardens soaking up the afternoon sun and autumn colours and smells.  (more pictures here for a while: Dunham Massey)

Yesterday (2nd) my gardener paid his last visit for the season and emptied all my pots ready for me to plant up some winter colour.  It is lovely having someone do the heavy work for you.  

So here I am fully ensconced in the UK as autumn works its way towards winter....

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