Tuesday, 29 July 2008

Remembering The Days Of Travelling Light

Checking in
Lots and lots
and lots of luggage
On the plane waiting for take off
Hurray, we are finally here in Guadeloupe! Sunday evening saw me spending hours squeezing everything into our allotted cases, no easy task and one I really don't enjoy. There is always something extra to fit in - this time it was a lovely set of plates and bowls (15 kilos) that Bertie's sister got us for our wedding. After 7 years she thought it about time that we take it!! I was concerned about its safety in the rough hands of the plane people, but astonishingly it arrived with just one tiny chip on one plate.

Bertie's brother in law went beyond the call of duty and brought his car over for us, so we squeezed all of us and our luggage into two cars. We have previously chuckled over the state of cars in France - in their favour, they don't just buy a new car every year like in the UK, but get the full worth out of each one they own. Very frugal and eco-friendly. However, there are some cars which simply amaze me that they are still on the road... But we got to the airport safely, at which point Bertie said it was a great achievement as the car could be somewhat capricious! I am glad he didn't mention that before!

Oh, so many bags!! We managed to get them all checked in and smile our way through security - although they confiscated a bottle of sun tan lotion. The advantage of travelling with a family is that we got the front middle row on the plane so lots of leg space. The kids were great - their biggest crime was giggling hysterically during the film! There were more people watching them than the film! Note, THE film - yes, we were in the olden days of one screen for all, and one film during 8 hours! As for the food, I could have wept! The girls had a box of crisps, chocolate, chocolate, chocolate and er, oh yes chocolate milk!

As you can imagine, it took rather a while to get all our baggage at the end. I felt for the ladies next to me wandering around with a list: 11 bags, 4 suitcases, 3 something else... They still left before us though! We can't work out what happened to Baby JoJo's pop up travel cot but we don't need it so that is no great loss. After negotiating 2 laden trollies and a buggy and 3 children out the door, it was great to see Bertie's sister come to meet us and his brother with a very large boot in his car!

The poor girls though, they had gone to bed at 11pm the night before and then CassCass slept for an hour or so on the plane. Then with all the welcoming festivites at home, we didn't get them to bed till 9pm...Guadeloupe time! That's 3am French time! Then CassCass woke at 3am and didn't go back to sleep! I am sure you can imagine how reluctantly I got up with her! I am glad to say she has gone down for a lengthy siesta now (couldn't get LissaLou to!). Hopefully we can get them all back into a routine and able to get to sleep on their own - no one has managed it for the last week which is a bit of a shock having had such good sleepers till now!

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