Let’s hurry this along
I’m aware that I’ve been back nearly a week and still not much news from Symi so I will end my UK trip story with a few photos to bring it to a close today.
I left you on Romney Marsh yesterday, and that’s where I was for three days. During this time, I met up with four other old friends from school days, had lunch with my old deputy headmaster, and there’s another coincidence there, a couple actually. He lives in a house we lived in 50 years ago, so I was able to see inside it again after a long time. I also briefly played their piano. It stood three feet away from where my first piano stood and where I had my first piano lesson. Also, in a revue at school in 1980, not long after we did ‘Cox and Box’, Box and I dressed up as the ugly sisters in a panto sketch where the headmaster was portrayed as Cinderella. Box and I were dressed as the two deputy heads, one of whom I had lunch with in my old house. He remembered it fondly, I am pleased to say.
I also took a long walk along the beach, and out into the marsh to see places and fields I used to play in with my farmers-sons friends, took photos of wildlife for research purposes and had a couple more hearty meals and pints of Old Rosie (cider). The next highlight was seeing my brother at Dungeness for the first time in 14 years.
On the last day of my trip, my nephew came down from Folkestone to pick me up. We visited his grandfather’s grave, drove to Ashford to see two of my nieces I’d not met before, and then spent the afternoon and evening in Folkestone behaving badly. I was able to take a look at the theatre I used to work in back in 79 to 81, now derelict and awaiting its fate. We had a ‘sesh’ at a Champagne bar stuck out at the end of the harbour arm, and the next day, the boys drove me to Stanstead. Here, Jet2 were on time until a couple of passengers got lost, and then we were delayed for 20 minutes. Ha! You should try 20 hours, love. We arrived in Rhodes only ten minutes late where the Angela Suits upgraded me as a returning visitor, and I had the biggest bed ever invented. The room was also spotless, unlike the hotel on the outward trip.
And so, back to Symi on the Blue Star 2 where, after I arrived, I was resolved to walk up to the village with my case but was rescued by Adriana’s husband who gave me a lift. I arrived at the Rainbow around 17.30 but didn’t get home until 22.00, and home is only fifty yards away. We had dinner at the taverna where I was welcomed back with two main dishes, water and a litre of wine for €20.00. About the same price as I paid for a bowl of lettuce, a trace of wine in a huge glass and a bottle of water in the Travelodge in Covent Garden. Mind you, I’d also had a glass of wine at Stanstead for €11.00 – the cheapest they could manage.
So, that’s it. No more travelling for me for a while, apart from a trip to Athens in winter, Scotland for a wedding, New Zealand in a year or so… Perhaps.
Scroll down for the rest of the photos.