We did not rush our last day in Hexham, our usual leisurely stroll to the shops, clean up the caravan, pack and organise. We sadly left Hexham about 2pm and headed down the A69 for the last time to L and Ds. At four we walked a street away to a party being held for us at R's sister M's son and wife's house. Lovely place and backed onto a park. They were very hospitable to us and all the other people who arrived to say farewell, well, some we were meeting for the first time, mostly distant relatives.
There was food aplenty and then R's very glam niece, who had been at the races all day, arrived, so drunk she could hardly stand. But she lasted the night and then went out clubbing too. At one point she put roller skates on and naturally enough, fell down. Her knee was very swollen the next day, as was her head. I am not a party person, but it was really quite enjoyable. Of course the Scotch came out, and once again Highriser peaked early and staggered off down the street to L & D's to bed about 11.
Next morning, D took R and myself in the car to the cemetery where R's grandfather was buried. R remembered that he could see the headstone from the No. 1 bus as it turned a corner, so we had a pretty good idea of the location. Alas, it was not to be found. It could have fallen and or been removed, but he was only buried in the sixties.
More hanging around back at the house and off to the Fox and Hounds for a late lunch. It was ok, although one of R's nieces, not the already mentioned one, who had stayed up all night was very emotional. L & D's daughter bought ten children's meals for her three boys. Of course half wasn't eaten. What a waste. Shocking diet. This was one of L's not eating anything green days, so she ate nothing green. D had his favourite, Gamon Steak. I had one cooked for me while I was there and I couldn't see what the fuss about them is. They are ok, but nothing special.
Back to K & Js hot special accommodation house, that wasn't so bad as the weather was cooler. K and J had to work the next day, but in spite of that, K and I stayed up a bit late, 'sortin' the world'.
Next morning R and I went for a really long walk around the local area. Quite interesting. One of the staff cooked us a sausage sandwich. She was the funniest person I met in England. She greeted us in the morning with the news that she had lost her pussy. It was actually a large toy cat for an inhouse raffle. It was found in one of the resident's flats.
In the afternoon R slept while I helped K with the residents' bingo game. That evening we returned to L and D's to give the hire car to a niece who's car was going in for repairs. This was the third and final farewell. We stayed a couple of hours as people dropped by to say goodbye. Some take away dinner that night at K and J's then at 6.05 the next morning, we were at the local airport.
We flew domestic to London in a plane with most awful seats. They were vinyl and tilted forward, so you just kept sliding off them. It was an Airbus, but an older model I think.
We left Heathrow about 12 noon and we were surprised to learn that we were going home via Hong Kong. After much calculating, I worked out that it took about the same time. Meaningful to Australians, the flight number was QF30 and I expect it was the same plane which had recently had some trouble. The flight wasn't too bad, a short day, a short night and another short day. We arrived home at about 8pm and what a bother to get out of the airport. Customs!!! While I appreciate their efforts to protect Australia, there were just not enough staff. I think it was about two hours from landing before we got into a taxi and drove the streets of my beloved city and country.
A distant relative of R's shows us his stuff on the trampoline at the party.
I have always fancied having a house over a creek. Taken in Hexham.