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Excess Latitude

Our brief stay at the Impangele B&B was a real pleasure. Our host Walter looked after us well cooking a great dinner in the evening accompanied by great wine from a fine selection. We spent the evening chatting and shared a second bottle finally polishing off some port on the house. In the morning he cooked up a delicious breakfast before a couple of the dogs took Helen and I for a walk around the lake/bird sanctuary outside.

For anyone visiting Johannesburg or, like us, simply passing through we thoroughly recommend the place.

Our trip to the airport was mildly eventful as my GPS had no knowledge of the blocked roads that had turned that residential area into a large compound with just a few ways in and out. Neither did my GPS know about some road alterations on the freeway which resulted in us being unable to get off when we wanted. We had plenty of time in hand and we made it to the airport in very good time.

Keeping our costs down we flew with Saudi Arabia Airways via (a 5 hour stop in) Jeddah which was another cultural experience for us. Helen very quickly felt under dressed amongst the majority of women on the plane who all seemed to have nice eyes. She rectified this by putting on her leggings planned for later when we arrived in the Uk.

The flights were both around 6 hours each give or take so it wasn’t too bad. No alcohol of course on the plane nor in Jeddah airport which wasn’t much to speak of and, quite surprisingly, cold from excessive use of air conditioning. We both managed a couple of hours sleep on the second flight.

Helen’s sister met us at the airport and took us to her home in Chesham. That was a welcome relief for us as we were quite tired and not adjusting well to the cold. We weren’t overly busy during the day but we did make and have an appointment with Barclays Bank here to open an account. We’re fed up of excessive fees on our overseas withdrawals and Barclays here in the Uk (as Bank of America in the US) are part of the Global ATM Alliance. By using a Barclays ATM card we’ll have lower fees in the countries we’ll be visiting next year. That would be nice. Interestingly Bank of America has a few more restrictions over the countries we’ll be visiting so the Uk banks is better for us. Quite coincidentally, in the news in the Uk that morning was notice that some banks, including Barclays, will be lowering their overseas transaction costs. No details of this had flowed down to the branches yet but it can only be good news for us.

In the evening we had a take away curry from our favourite restaurant here in Chesham, our old home town. Very delicious. We’d been looking forward to this and weren’t disappointed. I also had to get involved in some calls to New Zealand as the parts of our sex-change for the boat are ready to be shipped and it looks like things were left until the very last minute to work out logistics. I hope we have no delays as a result of this.

This morning we’re up and about later than normal but it’s pitch black outside. It’s winter of course but we’re also in latitudes not experienced for a long time, particularly this time of year. It feels quite weird. Not sure I like this winter lark but I’m sure we’ll get used to it.