The Long Journey Home

Trip Start Jul 09, 2013
Trip End Feb 15, 2014

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Flag of United Kingdom  , England,
Saturday, February 15, 2014

We were very relieved when we successfully managed to check-in at Bangkok. We had booked our return flights to the UK with EgyptAir via Cairo, and we not sure if Rachel would be allowed on to the fight with a cast. Our research on travel regulations state that you typically have to wait 48 hours after the cast has been put in place, and we were hoping we wouldn’t need a ‘Fitness to Fly’ certificate. If we did need one, we probably would have missed our flight! 

Cairo was certainly an interesting stop over for 2 hours, and it is not somewhere we would recommend visiting. The airport security is the most laidback we have ever seen and they didn’t even bother to properly check. It is also a little unnerving when you look at the departure board and see flights to so many war related places including: Benghazi, Baghdad, Beirut, Tripoli and Khartoum.  We were happy to be getting out of Cairo! 

We chose Manchester airport as our destination in the UK as it is not too far from Rachel’s family. We got picked up and took Rachel straight to the hospital to have her arm examined. After a very long wait the Doctors decided that Rachel should be immediately checked into a ward for an overnight operation. Rachel had her own personal room and a great view of the hospital helipad. Her operation actually got delayed due to the arrival of the enormous SeaKing helicopter (the one Prince William used to pilot) which pushed her down the operating list. Rachel finally had the operation on Valentine’s Day and some wires were put into her arm to hold the bone together. After a 48 hour stay in hospital Rachel was able to return home with her operation complete, ready to start recovering. 

Over the past few days we have slowly begun to adjust back to reality in the UK. We are enjoying the beautiful English food, and even like being a bit cold for a change. We have managed to purchase a car and the job hunting will begin over the next few weeks. 

The accident in Thailand meant we had to cut out four countries which we would have visited over the next three months. These were: Myanmar, India, Nepal/Tibet and Dubai. We were most upset on missing out on seeing Mount Everest, but we know we can visit these places in the future on holidays. We didn’t manage to see everywhere we had planned in Thailand, but we feel we have certainly seen enough and we weren’t that keen on the country anyway. Perhaps the fractured arm was a blessing in disguise as we have just seen on the news that violence has broken out among the Bangkok protests. 

Upon reflection of the whole trip, Mike believes his favourite place we visited was Mui Ne in Vietnam. Here we relaxed in a beautiful hotel with a swimming pool; the surrounding area was off the tourist trail but the nearby beach was absolutely beautiful. 

Rachel thinks her favourite place has to be the Abel Tasman National Park in New Zealand. This is a great example of nature at its best which has yet to be spoilt by humans; it is probably one of the most beautiful places in the world. 

Our journey took us on the road for 221 days. In total we visited 6 countries and saw some amazing places. Even though our adventure was unexpectedly cut short this time, travelling is still something you must do at some point in your lifetime. It really does broaden the mind, and our two trips have been ever so memorable. Here is to a new chapter in our life!
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