Touch-down, reunions and a change of plan...

Trip Start Jun 04, 2005
Trip End Apr 05, 2006

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Flag of United Kingdom  ,
Monday, March 13, 2006

"Oh my God, this place is freezing!" Winter was still very much in evidence when we touched down in London mid-afternoon on Saturday 11 March. Brother-in-law Pete picked us up and we drove to their home in Sutton. It all felt so weird, so unreal. Being surrounded with familiar sights, it suddenly felt like we hadn't been away at all.

In the evening, a small posse of friends gathered at Sue and Pete's for a reunion. Lucky for us, friends Pen and Nev had delayed their relocation back to South Africa for a few days, so they popped in with baby Ella. On Sunday, a larger crowd convened at a pub in Wimbledon for a traditional roast lunch. Ah, being reunited with family and old friends certainly took the edge off the nasty shock of arriving back in the UK!

I had already been looking into booking a flight to Cape Town to go and see family (it was my mum's 60th birthday on 20 March, and my sister and new baby would be there too). By the end of the pub lunch, the boys had pursuaded Rich that he should be going along too. Well, what, after all, is the point of rushing back to settled life when there's an excuse to extend our travels?

On Monday we booked well-priced daytime KLM fligths to Cape Town, departing Saturday 18 March; rang my dad to tell him we were coming and instructed him to keep it a secret from Mom. Deal done!

In the five days before we departed for Cape Town, we visited family - aunt Sheila and uncle David in Sevenoaks (who were flying to SA on the Thursday, and whom we would see again at that end), and cousins Kev and Linda with gorgeous new arrival Naomi, in Verwood.
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