Feels like coming home
Thornbury Travel Blog› entry 2 of 23 › view all entries
From Perth to London, still a long flight. Made a lot longer because I had arranged to meet Dione at a pub in London and since we'd been corresponding so readily I was keen to see her.
I arrived at Heathrow Airport and decided to have a shower to freshen up. I still had a couple of hours until I was to meet Di but as anyone who's experienced a long-haul flight knows, a good scrub-up can't be beat!
I asked a little man in overalls where I might find a shower. He was of middle eastern decent and he beckoned me to follow him. I was carrying my pack of course and as he trotted swiftly through the terminal he turned every now and then to make sure I was still following and to beckon once more.
I was reminded of the Monty Python Sketch where a similar little fellow lead a group on a merry hike throughout the country for an incredible distance. I was hoping I wouldn't suffer the same fate.
Finally we entered what was obviously the staff locker room. The shower was a staff shower and I was a little suspicious of the man either stealing my pack or peeping around the side of the nylon curtain. What I should have been suspicious of was his "free enterprise". He pointed to the shower and said, "one punt".
I didn't know what one punt meant and when it showed on my face he repeated it, several times. Then it dawned on me that I was to pay him one Pound. Ahhh!
I pulled a handful of coins I had brought from home after my last trip and gave him a 50p and 5x 10p coins.
I made it as quick as I could deciding to risk his possible interest against keeping one eye on my pack through the partially open shower curtain.
When I met Dione I had been to the bank and I was able to buy the first round. I then found out England had updated their money and my 10p pieces were no longer legal tender. I'd carried them around the world for nothing -no wonder the little man didn't want them.
It was good to see Di and after we'd caught up and she had to head off to work I wandered along to the nearest train station and found one that would take me to Bristol.
From Bristol I jumped a bus to Thornbury. This is a little village outside Bristol where I was to stay for the time I was here. Darryn's future Mother-in-law (Kaye) was kind enough to put me up. Darryn and Kim lived in their own flat on the other side of the village but they didn't have room for me.
When I got to Thornbury I wandered into the first pub I found and ordered a Dry Blackthorne Cider -ahhhhh...! It had been a long 3 years since I'd supped this tangy beverage.
At 5pm I made a phone call to Darryn's place and he came up to the pub with kim to collect me. It was the first time Kim and I had met. I'd heard much about her through the post between Darryn and I but of course he was in love and could have been biased.
We got another drink in and I chatted with them both before we headed back to Kim's mum's place. Yeah, nice one Darryn. I approve!
Kim and Darryn dropped me at Kaye's and then pretty much took off. Kim's two brothers lived at home still so there was going to be the four of us in the house for the next month or so. Kaye and I hit it off pretty smartly and Kim's brothers (John and Ian) were easy to get on with too.
We had a month to kick about and in that time there was plenty of fun to be had, places to visit, wedding plans to finalise and of course I had to catch up with all those friends I had made 3 years ago when I lived here.