I did not mention, in my November post, the name of the dreaded establishment wherein my son was married. This was because my son was still in discussion with, for want of a better word, the management, with a view to financial recompense. (Don’t I sound businesslike? ) However, as soon as this has been settled to our satisfaction, Tripadvisor will get the lot. Rather looking forward to that, as you might imagine.
However, we now have the professional photos, which are excellent. This has been a mild Autumn so all the leaves were still on the trees in all their splendour. The ground underfoot was a little soft, so many a lady’s shoe lost its glow but it was warm enough to be outside for ages, so the children could run round; the smokers could smoke and the photographer could herd us around like the proverbial headless chickens. He had my sympathy; it must have been like herding cats. We now have a memory stick containing no less than 800 photos. 800. It’ll be their silver wedding anniversary before they’ve got through them all.
And in the meantime we have had a trip to Majorca, (It rained) a trip to the Costa del Sol, (It rained) and a trip to Tenerife. (It was warm and sunny every day – huzzah for Tenerife!) Oh, and Christmas.
The redeeming feature of the Majorca trip, apart from the fact that the island is beautiful, whatever the weather, was the hire car. It didn’t start well but the end result was a joy, especially for the loved one, who turned into Lewis Hamilton for the duration of our stay.
We had had difficulties making the original booking of the car, as sometimes happens when booking online, but he got it all sorted out to his satisfaction and we toddled out of the airport to the pick up point, onto the minibus to the hire car office and were dropped there as dusk was falling. The clerk seemed a little puzzled but these are foreign people, not proper British like what we are, so we waited with barely concealed impatience while she sorted out her paperwork. We were a little miffed when, half way through the transaction, she picked up the phone and had a jolly chat with a friend, then put the phone down and told us that our reservation had been cancelled and they did not have a car for us.
Blood pressure on the rise, the loved one began to expostulate, when the clerk interrupted to say that the agency through whom we had booked had booked, cancelled and booked with another firm within the space of about an hour a few weeks previously. Apparently, this was the reason for the booking difficulties we had had – see previous paragraph.
So there we were, in the office of the wrong car hire company, with darkness all around us, on an industrial estate in not so beautiful downtown Palma. “But don’t worry”, said the clerk, “their office is over there, can you see the green sign?” And lo, we did see a green sign and made our weary way towards it on foot. (We did thank the nice clerk, who hadn’t been being rude and foreign at all, but who had been sorting out the problems for us. It doesn’t do to judge, does it?)
Arriving at the correct car hire office somewhat later than expected, we were greeted with a cheery, “Is everything ok? Flight delayed, was it?” “Sort of”, we said, sheepishly, very much aware that, if we had read the paperwork properly, we would have been fine, and moved quickly on to filling in the forms.
By now it was pitch black outside, so, when we went out to the car park to find our allotted vehicle, we didn’t look all that closely. We usually go for the smallest – cheapest- in the range as long as it has four doors. We have driven some right old biscuit tins over the years, so we had no great hopes on this occasion. The loved one found the right car by the simple expedient of pressing the buttons on the key until some lights flashed and we assumed that was the right car, which it was.
It was a Seat Leon, which is pretty up to date, a nice small saloon car, in this case, a nice small, gunmetal grey coupe. Having had to seek help to work out how to adjust the seats, the loved one was slightly flustered and set off as soon as he could. (He said he wasn’t flustered but I could tell. He gets a slight twitch, like Herbert Lom in the Inspector Clousseau films.) The next half hour was spent working our way through the labyrinth that is/are the Palma ring roads(s). Being familiar with the route, we knew how easy it is to miss the road – we’ve done so more than once before – so we were on our metal. Delighted to find ourselves on the right road, heading in the right direction, we settled into the journey.
At this point, we started to notice some of the features of the car. The automatic bluetooth connection to my phone, so we could use it hands free; and play our own music from it, rather than the local radio station; the subdued lighting on the doors so we could easily spot the door and window controls; the lighting in the footwell when the door was open so you could see where to put your feet. (Mine usually stay on the far end of my legs but it was a nice idea, we thought.) And then, when it came to parking, the loved one put it into reverse and the dashboard display disappeared to reveal a screen showing the rear view with lines on it to help reverse into the space and park perfectly. This was not an unqualified success. The loved one has never parked so untidily as he did that week. It caused endless hilarity to the local passers by and to us every time he parked.
It also appeared to be jet propelled. At what the loved one swore was a mere touch of the pedal, I was thrust back in my seat and we were off down life’s highway at warp speed. The loved one adored it. Did I mention the alloy wheels? Apparently this means something to those who care about such things. All in all, it was a great success and we’re hoping we get the exact same car next time we go. It may by then have slightly more than the 2000 kilometres is had on the clock when we left it though.
And drawing? Well, of course I found time for that too. One day the weather was so bad we stayed in the apartment until mid afternoon because it wasn’t worth a trip out. The loved one spent a great deal of his time staring drearily through the driving rain out of the window, across an ever deepening lake, while I sat tangling to my heart’s content. I managed not to remind him that we had been bought a Chrome dongle so we could watch Netflix or stream from my tablet onto the tv but he had forgotten to pack it.
I decided to try a tangled journal this year and blithely started a front page. You can see it at the top of the page and I’m sure you spotted the mistake. This was the second attempt.
I’m currently working on page two. The intention was to try for a page a day or, at the very least, once a week. Today is the 30th of January and I haven’t completed page 2 yet. But I will, I will.
But not before this week’s Diva Challenge, which is:
Weekly Challenge #301: “DuoTangle: Paradox vs Diva Dance”
This weekend Zentangle HQ sent out their latest newsletter in which they shared their new video series called “Kitchen Table Tangles”
These videos will be available to the Mosaic App subscribers, but occasionally they may share a video with everyone!
In this video you can watch Rick tangle as he and Maria share tips and tricks, etc.
And, oddly enough, I had read that newsletter this morning and took a fancy to trying it out. I’m not happy with it because I wasn’t careful/mindful enough but I will enjoy having another go at this. (The shading is too pale too.)
So that’s it for now. I have a wretched cough at the moment, so I am going to dose myself with honey and lemon and vegetate in front of the TV. Until next time, world, be good. ish.