Saturday, 30 April 2016

That's Life

One of the excuses I made for not starting my own blog was that my life is so uneventful I'd have nothing to blog about. I like uneventful, it doesn't mean boring, we're always busy but there's little drama, not much to rock our steady little boat.

A few weeks ago we had what seemed like a force nine gale blowing, when anything that could go wrong did. I won't bore you with all the gory details, it would take all day, but these were some of the things that were sent to try us:

Harry was ill. He went to the doctor's without any prompting and took four days off work. 

No sooner had he recovered than I got an ear infection in both ears. The antibiotics upset my stomach for a whole week. Bleugh!

We had to abandon a day trip to France when we got a puncture half way to the rail terminal. Harry's car is fitted with run flat tyres. It took over two hours for the breakdown service to source and fit a replacement; I suppose we couldn't expect better at 5.30am.

Harry filled my car with petrol - it runs on diesel. It was an expensive mistake, but no harm done. He took it badly though.

Our business email accounts were compromised and blocked. We didn't realise quite how much we relied on email to interact with our clients and suppliers until we lost the facility.

It was a really frustrating time but we kept our lifejackets on and weathered the storm; nobody died.

We're in the middle of a happy event right now; our younger daughter came home for a week's visit a few days ago. She lives what seems like a million miles away on another continent, so we don't see her often. There's never a dull moment when she's around and we miss her sorely when she goes back. She's a loving, caring, young woman but, at the same time, fiercely independent. She sent me this a while ago and it suits her to a tee:

Harry was on airport duty on the morning of her arrival and we were both awake early. I was sitting on the side of the bed reading my iPad, when he sat down beside me with a pensive look on his face. I told him I'd be off to the bathroom in a minute, I was just checking my emails. He smiled and said, "No, that's not it. You're going across my knee but I can't decide whether to do it now or wait until you've showered and put on your body lotion." I told him that was really mean and asked why I was getting spanked anyway, I'd been over his lap only the day before. He said we had to put one in the bank and it would have to last a while; with Daughter 2 around we didn't know when we'd have another chance. With that, he sauntered off, so it didn't take much guesswork to know what he'd decided. It wasn't a hard spanking, mostly fun, but the wooden paddle put in a brief appearance.

Our elder daughter lives a five hour drive away so we don't see her very often either - at least she lives in the same country as we do. She called to ask if she could stay with us one night, between business meetings in two towns not too far from us. Harry and I were ecstatic to have both daughters under our roof for the first time in many years. They hadn't seen each other for nearly four years so, despite being Facebook friends, there was a lot of catching up to do.

Daughter 2 is away for a couple of days, staying with a friend, so I'm expecting a "happy weekend" meeting later. Those have become something of a fixture recently, not so much a reminder to be good as a reconnection at the end of the working week.

D2 leaves on Tuesday, then we'll really be back to uneventful and that's okay with us.


Thursday, 14 April 2016

Come Fly With Me

This time last week I was packing for a short break. Harry had a couple of spare days and decided to book a long weekend in one of Italy's fair cities. As we were only going for three nights we elected to take carry-on luggage only, instead of our usual suitcase or two. We had nothing suitable so, armed with the carry-on rules from the airline's website, we took a trip into town. By the time we got to the third store it was apparent that the airline's allowance was smaller than most other carriers' and suitable baggage was impossible to find. 

We didn't want to buy an odd size just for one trip anyway, so Harry said we'd just buy the standard size, he was confident that the airline wouldn't even check it. I had read the airline's guide that said the rules would be strictly enforced and over-sized bags would have to go in the hold at excess baggage rates, so I wasn't happy with that decision. Harry wouldn't budge and the ensuing argument was not pretty. I left him to choose the cases while I moved away a bit to regain my composure. 

He hadn't made his choice when I returned so I thought it was worth having another go, in a more moderate manner. I told him he may be right but why take the risk of having to put two small bags in the hold at a cost of 90 euros, when we could take a full-sized case in the hold for 15 euros each way? Harry agreed the logic in that so off we went home, no hard feelings. Nonetheless, you know what happens to naughty wives who argue impolitely don't you? I didn't get spanked though. Before we left for town I nipped back to our bedroom for something I'd forgotten and saw that Harry had arranged the bed for a 'good girl' treat. I hadn't been a good girl, so I forfeited that pleasure. Harry left the bed as it was and it stayed that way until I re-arranged it when I went to bed. I got the message. There was a reset the next morning and a 5 o'clock the day before we left, so I wasn't entirely without attention of the spanky sort.

You'll probably not be surprised to hear that Harry was right; the airline staff didn't even glance at all the standard sized carry-ons passing through the gate.

We had a really interesting weekend, not exactly relaxing, there was so much to see. The highlight had to be standing on top of the cathedral roof, nearly 100 metres above the ground, looking out over the city. Of course, we couldn't visit Italy without sampling the wonderful gelato. I just had to take a photo of this glorious confection. The shot doesn't do it justice, I'm not used to taking photos of food. Mine was based on raspberries and summer fruits, you can just see Harry's yummy death by chocolate in the background.

All too soon it was time to get online to check in for our homeward flight and what a performance that was! Harry tried on his iPhone, my iPad and for more than an hour on the hotel's laptop the next day, only for the procedure to crash at the same point each time. Not only could we not download our boarding passes but we couldn't check in our suitcase, which meant it would be charged at the excess baggage rate!

We had an hour to spare between checking out of the hotel and leaving for the airport, plenty of time to squeeze in just one more ice cream.