It’s been a bit of a week all things considered.
It seems a little trite and inconsequential for me to witter on about the unimportant events in my life, with the catastrophic events in Japan and beyond this week. It is something I can’t really get my head around, and so I can only express my horror about it all, and send my thoughts and best wishes to anyone connected to these tragic events.
Returning to banality, much has happened in my little world this week. I shall quote myself from last Sunday.
“For now I have resigned myself to a sort of defeat on the flights front. I have not given up, and will not of course, but March brought with it an increase to the already silly prices. I had been banking on Thomas Cook, but they have put their prices up, and even when they were lower, by the time you click-through to book and find that you need to add-on those optional extras like luggage allowance and in flight oxygen, they were not much different from everyone else, albeit direct.
So I’m playing the waiting game, holding my nerve until either I or the airlines blink.”
Who then could have predicted the strange events of the following day? There was I sat at work minding my own business, when an email lands in my Inbox from Ocean Florida. I had asked for a quote a few days earlier, and chuckled at the returned prices, as they were in line with the other silly ones I had seen.
This email promised much, but as I get lots of emails that do that, I was about to delete it along with the ones for those blue pills, and the claims to make things longer. But wait, it said there was a one day only sale, and they had unbeatable prices for all July and August dates. Expecting to fall foul of the usual trick where the actual price quoted is three times that in the email, I called anyway, as it was either that or do some work.
When I called, the staff at Ocean seemed genuinely excited, and a bit busy. After a bit of chat it seems that they suspected some sort of system blip, with prices available that were just unheard of for school holiday dates. We threw some options around, but at the end of it all, I had a price that started with a 5 for a flight into Fort Lauderdale for fifteen nights. We could have gone into Orlando, but it suited us not to, as we want a different trip this time. We fly back out from Orlando on the way home though. Both legs have connections in Canada, Toronto on the way out and Montreal on the return.
A slight drawback is a departure from Heathrow, but even with the now booked Travelodge (£27) the night before and some petrol, it made sense.
So confronted with a price that I knew was fantastic, and a chap on the phone telling me that these seats were literally vanishing before his eyes, I bit the bullet and went for it. Job done. Funny how things can change in 24 hours then.
So Monday was eventful enough then, without what then followed that evening. Emily and Rebecca had been asked to film a question for David Cameron whilst they were in Manchester on Monday evening. They had gone in as a last-minute decision trying to get a wristband for a One Direction signing. Emily is obsessed with one of the anonymous haircuts within their number. Whilst waiting (fruitlessly it turned out) a Producer approached them and they committed a question to camera, after only a dozen or so takes. The giggles took hold!!
So after signing a quick consent form on Tuesday, we waited to see if they made the final cut on The One Show that evening. Having had to endure nearly all of the show, we had almost given up on it, and then, right at the last moment, they were shown.
A small gathering had, well, gathered upstairs as the girls and friends huddled round a TV upstairs. As the clip began, the screams were heard, and what sounded like a herd of elephants danced around above us. Once the hysteria calmed down, Sky+ was hammered as they played it back a few times. Fame at last for them. Dibbers around the land also recognised the girls it seems, and I suppose their fame has now progressed from the internet to TV!
So a hectic start to the week. Like many of you Florida obsessives out there, throughout the week, having secured flights, I have been pulling together the bare bones of a plan, and with this trip taking place right outside of my comfort zone, it is proving a little tricky. Research has been the name of the game, but here is the work in progress.
Most of the first week will be spent in South Florida, based in Key Largo for two days, then five days in Naples. The first booking to be made was for Vero Beach, a place we have all fallen in love with, and courtesy of Tom , yet another kind Dibber, points were rented, and two nights booked.
After that we drive up to Orlando, for the last five nights, and I am just in the process of securing a nice villa off the 27. There shall be no Disney theme parks this year, for two reasons.
1. It costs a fortune and we are on a budget
2. We’ve done it to death, and need a break.
We might do a night at the Hard Rock, and a couple of days in the parks there, but we’ll see how the funds go. The main focus of this trip will be sand, sea, pools and relaxing. Oh and food!
Getting in the way of vital planning and research this weekend was the arrival of our wardrobes! They took four weeks to come, and just so happened to arrive on the same day as Rebecca’s new bed. The bed was trivial when compared to the weight, hassle and complexity of the wardrobes. With spotlights, full mirrored doors and the weight of a small tank, it took me all of Saturday (literally) and then needed my Dad to help me finish, as the lifting needed more than little ole me.
They look good though. I on the other hand am an old aching mess.
It is funny how the arrival of one piece of furniture can trigger a chain reaction of things in the house. Rebecca’s new bed means that I had to dismantle, move and then rebuild her old bed into our (now) spare room, in preparation for “her German” in a few weeks. This meant that the PC and desk in there had to go up into the loft (plenty swearing…imagine camel and eye of needle stuff), and a general clear out of the wardrobes in the spare room, which was Rebecca’s room…still with me?
I’m tired just typing that lot.
So the weekend passes in a blur of Alan keys, screwdrivers and bits left over, followed by the obligatory trip visit with enough cardboard to construct a small village. I am off to bed now to see if I can somehow get to sleep despite the excitement of another week in work!
Till the next time…..