October 8-11 2021
Time to go…. After many weeks of last minute preparations… each item crossed off the list was replaced with two more ; going to bed at 24:00 and up at 04:00 in a cold sweat that we would not be ready, the boat insurance would not be approved, radio licenses and yacht registration would not be ready in time etc.
It seems everyone in the sailing industry waits til the last minute…and I thought I was bad.😜
The first nine boxes sent to Oyster were stuck in UK customs and threatened to be returned to the US so we canceled additional boxes and planned to pack 8 suitcases with the remaining goods figuring that flying business class we got 2 free bags each and at $50/suitcase for the extras it was safer and cheaper to have the airlines handle our shipping needs. Gail had a lot of large worn out suitcases that we would donate at the Ipswich marina.
Loaded to the gills in Gail’s Mercedes we drive to Mill Valley where Teddy ,my son in law, drove us to the airport with Teddy driving and Gail on the console .
Checking in to British Air I was shocked to learn that the extra bag fee had just been increased to $200/bag😣. $800 lighter we boarded our Boeing 787 for Heathrow. I figured I would make up some of the excessive baggage fee charges in free drinks. It felt amazing to relax for the first time in months.
Moving through Heathrow was a breeze; immigration and customs took less than 5 minutes. All the extra requirements for COVID can be frustrating and time consuming in the planning but once at the airport it sure is nice not to have the crowds when traveling international .
Grabbing our Touro car and with Gail at the wheel, enough said, we head off to spend the weekend in Bournemouth with Ute ,Gail’s roommate from medical school, and her family. Ute and Ray her husband were wonderful. We quickly shed our jet lag and had a fantastic weekend. Gail and Ute reliving old med school days and Ray and I quickly finding mutual interests and becoming friends.
Our weekend visit was over too fast. Time to drive to Ipswich, 5 hours NW.But why not stop and see the famous Salisbury cathedral and Stonehenge along the way as Gail had not seen either.
Well past sunset we arrive in Ipswich at the Salthouse Inn ready to see Infinity for the first time and meet her PM, Andy Armshaw the next day.