Trip Start Jul 19, 2009
160Trip End Oct 25, 2010
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The journey home was a disaster.
First it took ages to leave, people getting their stuff together, fridges to be defrosted, laundry - piles of it, and the place had to be left spotless as there are people coming in next week.
Ants having a field day.
It's not wise to travel on Saturdays but Mieke needed to be home Sunday so we did anyway and regretted it deeply.
On top of the very busy roads there was, I think, some sort of rugby game everybody seemed to be headed for, cars togged up in yellow and blue, drivers and passengers equally mad, honking their horns, shouting at each other, throwing stuff out of their cars and just generally behaving like irresponsible idiots.
Traffic jams, diversions - it took us twice as long as normal to reach Paris.
On top of that Sheppie seemed to have some stomach upset, we had to open the windows every five minutes, the smell was unbearable, so the sorely needed air co was not doing us much good.
Leftover food brought along to consume on the road was a mistake, I sat there with butter and cheese melting all over me, squashed tomatoes, Peter and Mieke expecting me to conjure up a delicious lunch from the debris.
Irritations and bad tempers all round is a fair statement.
Finally past Paris, after numerous stops for Sheppie who seemed to be working up something very unpleasant, Peter steps on the gas only to be stunted by Mieke screaming the dog had been violently sick all over the back seat.
Shit, well no, vomit - same difference.
There's one thing I point blank refuse to do and that is go anywhere near either. Yes, I know that means someone else has to do it - so shoot me, I'd much rather have that.
Mieke finely points out it's not her dog, leaving poor Peter to clean up the mess.
Thank you, Peter, I owe you one.
Humans normally recover after throwing up, Sheppie continued to pass vile wind through out the trip.
Maybe we should have shot him, put us all out of our misery.
It was getting late and Peter wasn't up to the extra hour and a half of seeing Mieke home. So Mieke, swearing at her mobile that is not used to passing so many borders, finally manages to contact her son, Asher, who is more than delighted to pick her up in Amsterdam.
So delighted, in fact, he arrives there hours before time, gets bored, drives off and has an accident. He brings the bad news to Mieke saying 'his nose is irreparably damaged', whereupon she throws a fit, thinking he's done his face in instead of the car. Her ex calls, several times, her youngest won't answer the phone. On and on it goes.
I can see why she doesn't want to go home.
We bring her anyway, and drive back to Amsterdam, to face our own music.
The house looks dirty and dismal, piles of unpaid bills, debt collectors - why didn't we have them forwarded?
But the garden is looking great, amazing really for a town house, and there can't be a better bed than the one right here. A proper bath, bliss, and no queuing - I suppose I could get used to this.....not to mention the computer, works like a treat unlike that bloody-minded thing in France.
Still, the streets are drab and grey, already I miss the fresh green of Clédat, the hills, the meadows, the cows, the birds, my castle......what can I say?
Maybe one more chapter to fill you in,
see if Amsterdam can seduce me once again?