Looks like a week of glorious weather ahead as nights start to cool down and days remain mostly cloud free. The big question than is will he brave the pool yet 🤔 Baby steps

Well that’s the first hour taken care off . Let’s up the ante

No feeling below the waste . Status normal 🕺🏻 Ok time to submerge

Sitting out in the sun then was glorious. Warm but not hot. Could sit there for hours but have to take it easy. Of course on reviewing images realised with the numbing cold I have moved my left arm away from body which is a definite no no at two weeks 🤦🏻‍♂️ Oh well .

It’s a quiet week at home with just a Physio appointment to squeeze in so think daily pool trips are in order. By Saturday we were into single digits in mornings and also quite a deal of shoulder pain which hope is only due to the cool weather .

Longish days leaves one time to ponder and muse but never at the same time . Mostly my mind always settles on dreaming of travel. CLP and I have a cruise booked for October 2024 but that seems a long way away and so always keen for a February type solo trip to USA as you do. These days have serious discussions with my Financial Advisor who warns me “ you know you could live to 70 afterall “ . He is the little devil that sits on my left shoulder so is still a bit pissed about the blood and staples up his ass a few weeks back. Planning continues even if ultimately common sense wins out. Yeah right eh 😂 Actually like idea of some LA/Santa Monica time when coolish and tack on a return to Vegas maybe or Phoenix. Like Vegas as great walking city ( which couldn’t do well last time) and a surprisingly safe and easy city to navigate. Also helps having a reliable accommodation option lined up. Time will tell .

Meanwhile back to the pool as day after day of clear blue skies ensue. Don’t mind wandering around the pool naked but CLP did warn me to be careful where I stood in middle of day. Not sure why……….

Of course a week at Flashman Inc does allow one to partake of some varied alcohol each night. We have had the Ratu Rum, the American Honey Bourbon and of course heap plenty vino but perhaps fondest memory is Spritzer time as reminds us of France. We dressed for the occasion

One day leads to the next and before you know it time to Tap a Physio again. Karl was pleased with my movement especially from hand to wallet 😏 Do seem to be progressing well but still need some manual manipulation of compromised joint – don’t we all eh 🕺🏻. Will maybe line up two more Physio visits and then hopefully have a series of exercises to do at home. Plan on heading back to Maryhole in second week of June, not a secret apparently. Discussing plans with CLP over a calendar for next few weeks and noticed a big red circle around June 13 th and YIPPEE written in bold 😏 I asked what the special occasion was and she just smiled . Time then to try another 4 Tapi.

Speaking of special occasions today Saturday 27 is 11th birthday of Handsome Harry ❤️ The boys love to go fishing on Dads boat now

Plenty of pool time in the sun next few days then before we head down to Brisvegas for a few days next weekend . Coolish but glorious weather if wind dies down. Oh, and time told

I’m going to Vegas next February baby 🕺🏻🍻✈️🏦🌃💰🧲🔙🔜

Slice n Dice 2 – Week 2

Posted: May 12, 2023 in Uncategorized

When last we left our hero he was at that eternal crossroads – heavy pain medication or alcohol 🤔 Did some research and found that alcohol numbs “the pain” so it was an easy decision although suspect “the” refers more to emotional pain than actual cut nervy tendon type but hey let’s not split hairs. In general this time around the recovery seems a bit better but then when you have a major surgery every year maybe you just get forgetful. Of course when you have a major surgery every year your memory can …….hmm ok.

So by day 3 it was off the pain pills and soak up some sun until socially acceptable to drink. By day 4 actually out of PJs by 9 am 🕺🏻

Lovely brisk mornings for start of the week saw the return of the Twins of Terror resplendent in the latest season’s must have flannos

By weeks end it was time to travel afar and we headed to Brisvegas to see some old farts and young munchkins. First up on Friday was a drop in to Medium Security Twilight Home to see Mum for Mothers Day. Looking pretty good go almost 97 and didn’t leave before getting name of that hairdresser

Then we were heading over to decamp at Camp Hill for night and look after Munchkins x 2 but first thought we drop into Pineapple Hotel for a juice of the frothy type . Looks a great pub and nice and quiet when we were there

Rock up to RJER in plenty of time to fetch kidlet 1 from school . Lots of Mothers Day Activities around of course and lovely for Nonna to be able to share in one with Eloise . I shared a coffee with BC1 .

Lovely night spent looking after girls although of course CLP did all the heavy lifting . Eloise loves coming down early morning to Nonna and we took opportunity to check for anymore missing teeth and agreed to split the proceeds. I pulled on a couple but they wouldn’t shift 😢

CLP wanted to do some cleaning this morning when RJ at the gym but as I always say it’s never too early to introduce girls to their life’s work. Ouch

Next family function on menu was celebrate Claude’s 93 rd rotation around the Sun at Burbank, Not California with most of the Della clan . As always it was a wonderful gathering with plenty to eat and drink including a 2006 Magnum of Shiraz, stored perfectly of course .

All good things come to an end of course and after our whirlwind visit to Brisvegas it was time for one last goodbye with a promise to return in a few weeks

A couple of quiet days then at Flashman Inc under cloudy skies until visit Surgeon on Tuesday. Some decent rain certainly

Surgeon was happy with wound and I was happy to get rid of staples. A comparison to 2018 ( on left ) shows a similar scar but clearly I have been in the sun a bit more this year . In 2023 there also seems to be one of those ghostly images in the background that you sometimes read about 🤔

To celebrate passing first hurdle with honours time to get Ratfaced on Ratu as you do. It’s a bit too easy to drink methinks. Just leaves first Physio visit then on Thursday . I’ll drink to that

Physio was mostly happy with me especially when I paid the $120 bill😏 Am starting Physio – correctly – a bit earlier this time so very minimal movement or active exercise. I seem to have a problem letting my arm or shoulder hang “dead” . I assured him it was only a problem above the waist …… Karl the Physio is German so not expecting raucous laughs and was not disappointed. We then had a lovely Tapas Lunch at Tapas 10 next door – sadly we only got through 4 this time but shall return.

Then it was time to start some Sun therapy and sign off for this week . In summary the surgery went very well but even when you don’t have pain it is a very slow recovery to being useful and independent

Just ask CLP ❤️

Surgery booked for Friday so came down to Flashman Inc a day early on a simply glorious day . Time for some pool action and one last look at the shoulder pre surgery

And here is a reminder of the plan of attack

Got message to be at hospital at 0730 am Friday which suited fine. Fair crowd lined up at Day Surgery desk so didn’t get into a room until close to 0830. After that was moved along quite quickly and lining up for the laughing gas OT adjacent by 0930. Great anaesthetist and explained the nerve block well which seemed to go in a bit easier this time. Wheeled in and next thing remember was waking up in recovery rather groggy but glad to see left shoulder bandaged up. Recovered pretty quickly and then out to final waiting room for a cuppa and some sangas. Doc came and saw me and said happy with procedure , cya in 10 days.

All necessary instructions given and then pick up my bag of goodies and on the way with CLP by 130 pm. They initially took the wrong patient out to CLP and she was weighing up whether she really should say anything or accept the trade 😏 Eventually got home and settled in for afternoon trussed up like usual Turkey. The block was working well and before you knew it, time for afternoon drinkies of the zero alcohol variety for some 😢

Early night of course but didn’t sleep well as not really tired . Maybe got a couple of hours by 3 am and that was it. The block has worn off but no real pain yet. Obviously have the heavy stuff on hand. As always CLP has been a legend. And today also woke up to our 21 year anniversary 👫 🎊 …..and I can’t drink alcohol 🤦🏻‍♂️

Ok by 6 am the pain was kicking in. Time for a little wipe down and surprised at amount of blood given they said try and keep this bandage on for 10 days. Ah, don’t think so . Will be changing it tomorrow.

The pain hung in all day with little relief even with the strong stuff. We are now in the Holy Trinity of Recovery with Pain, Constipation and No Alcohol 😢 Did get some good sleep on Night 2 and now on Sunday it is time to change bandage and do a site inspection. The moment of truth looms. Made CLPs day by letting her shower me and then we removed the bandage. All looks good and clean and hopefully with no more bleeding can leave new bandage on until see Doc to get staples removed

Certainly feel better after a shower and probably helps with slightly cooler weather . Time for some breakfast and my lovely Nursey Mercy even cut it up for me. But she won’t wear the uniform 😢

So, at Day 3 all seems on track and now just rest and line up some Physio for Friday week. Can’t drive for 6 weeks so will be at Flashman Inc for that period .

Of more importance today of course is the 10th birthday of my favourite Grandaughter Jessica.

Holiday over now so once I hop off the cross on Sunday reality strikes. Got through the last month relatively ok at least with the bung shoulder ( ankle is a whole other story 😢) . Time to line up first for the MRI to point us in the direction of the appropriate surgery . If I am the supreme physical specimen expected then it’s a repeat of the old rotator cuff buff and shine. A cut here, a staple there and lay around for 3 months . If for some reason the MRI reveals the shoulder is in less than stellar shape then we move onto the old shoulder switcheroo . Maybe they could put my fused ankle in there 😏

Not a fan of MRI as tend towards claustrophobia and do have trouble controlling breathing . Hopefully the result is clear enough to allow surgeon to make “decision before incision “. 0830 MRI at Pulse Lumus Radiology and then the surgeon visit at 11 am . Luckily surgeon is in same medical complex across from SCUH , the future scene of the crime.

So, MRI went well. Got in early and so went up to Doc on 4th floor and he had images already so saw me straight away. Showed enough material to work with – told ya 🕺🏻- and so basically the same op as last time only different shoulder. Hopefully 🤞 . Doc seemed to suggest it was less of a procedure than last time – only day surgery – but would cost twice as much as they don’t cover bicep reattachment anymore 😢Booked in for May 5th at this stage . If I could have got in on May 4th it would have been cool as apparently they use light sabres to cut on that day . Got home and gave CLP the good news. She should come around in 20 mins

This Easter is of course the usual Della Gathering – renamed Della Coachella – at Flashman Inc on Sunny Coast . People come, People go over the 3 days and then we clean up. Maximum numbers always for Saturday lunch which sits at 15 at present . No standing room . Music playlist to be determined but expect Gary Puckett and The Union Gap to figure heavily. And alcohol

Meanwhile todays “Truth in Advertising “ entry

Always great to spend some time in the pool but pretty soon those pesky family members start rolling in. First up is TB and this years entry is a caravan. They had the pick of the sites but insisted on being near where “the action is “ . At our age that means close to the toilet thanks. They parked , threw out the chocks ( not choccies😢) and opened the esky. They also have a Flash that can run and play and lick herself. Well one out of three ain’t bad 👨🏻‍🦯

A couple of sherberts and a lovely meal had us ready to call it early on a busy day for everyone. On Friday will be an added 6 freeloaders including a couple of little scamps so some rest is needed.

This of course is also Masters weekend so requires finding a quiet spot early morning while the others catch up on beauty sleep. Lordy Lordy some may not wake until 10 am. Ouch….

Weather forecast a bit gloomy for Day 2 of Dellacoachella before hopefully clearing for a fine and warm Saturday . This certainly wasn’t predicted this morning . I am shocked and amazed.

More arrivals under rainy skies but the girls came prepared . 10 and counting

A quiet afternoon ensued under cloudy skies with occasional sun. Not enough to bring out the sluggos just yet but tomorrow was looking good. As the skies darkened it was Spritzer time under the light of 6 mobile phones checking out BOM radar 😏

We dodged the bad stuff but there was an impressive lightning show. Our meat free Friday continued with Prawns and Salmon for dinner. Time for some sleep as the big day tomorrow .

Dawned a glorious day as predicted . After the usual Breakfast of Plenty it was time to hide in the pool while the heavy lifting was done 🕺🏻 The girls heard me laughing . It was a two floater day

By late morning all the crowd were gathering on a simply stunning day . Starting to warm up so we started emptying the beer esky as you do . A feast was laid out before us so with all the energy could muster moved the 10 feet to inside and resumed festivities

The hours passed with easy chat and easing of belt buckle. Always a plan to not eat too much at lunch so more leftovers for dinner and less people to share with 😏 Of course the other clever move is always sit next to the Vintec trio for easy access . Always great for the Della clan to have another gathering

And so another Dellacoachella slowly wound down and ended up with just the 4 of us staying the last night. Me, CLP ,T and B . Can I buy a vowel 🤔 Just hoping the Easter Bunny didn’t get the memo about the girls leaving before Sunday and still left some eggs around the pool garden. 🙏🏻

Damn, everyone is onWhats App these days, even EB. No secrets 😢 A relaxing breakfast and one last swim before trekking back to Maryhole some time later in day. A month at home before heading back on May 4th for SnD 2. Will play some golf while can and get back into routine with work on course etc. Looking forward to some cooler weather starting to kick in .

Now, what’s happening in The Masters ….

CMBM – The Flashies

Posted: April 4, 2023 in Uncategorized

You know you have been hanging out …

Best Flight

QF 63 in Business of course Sydney to Johburg . Start of holiday , great product on Dreamliner and boarding a dream compared to what was to come

Most Annoying Passenger

Tight one. 2 K was a nuisance on QF 63 but hard to go past the entitled clown on QF 64 who obeyed no directions and stood in aisle half the flight talking to two other clowns . To be fair there were annoying assholes on every flight really .

Worst Flight

Emirates EK 764 Johburg to Dubai. A very full A 380 with a shocking boarding experience and disinterested attendants . In exit row seat near toilet that broke down 30 mins into flight but passengers stood expectantly outside all flight. Served last basically every meal .

Best Airport Lounge

Sydney Business . Alcohol 24/7 , large and airy. Good displays , good food and coffee. Aspire was a pleasant surprise in Johburg but were lucky to be there when quiet and is an oasis in a horrible airport.

Worst Airport

Can ya guess 🤔 OR Tambo is a shocker – apart from a great range of stores . Check in is ok but after that help. Passport control a nightmare due to lack of staff and ignorant passengers pushing in constantly . Boarding a nightmare due to inefficiency and a complete lack of displays, signs and announcements . We are on “Africa Time” folks

Well We Are in Africa

The Mack Air light plane flights require patience and understanding . A to B often travels via C and D and changes planes at Z! A 45 min flight becomes 2.5 hrs. Zimbabwe airport is a mess of inefficiency and rip off. Here is a tip, fill out immigration forms on 90 min flight before arriving. $60 USD for 2 x 5 min visas to pass through airport .

Best Accomodation

No bad accomodation but River Club is winner with own plunge pool and a claw bath. Nice and quiet . Sable Alley tent was fine but hot , while Kalahari was smaller but cooler. Still, a tent is a tent and just a zip between you and baboons. Then there are the animals….

Best Free Accomodation

151Rude Republic, Pleased da Funtown. Only problem was there were a lot of French people outside. Good news, a lot of alcohol inside 🕺🏻🇫🇷

Best Safari Camp

Sable Alley . Best combo of living quarters and communal area . Great staff and great pool. First real taste of Africa after luxury of River Club

Best Staff Member

A tie. Ophelia at River Club was the sweetest young lady who we got to know well. Molls was our best guide and we had him to ourselves for 3 days and again got on very well. Ok, they work for tips but still….

Slowest Guide who could talk under Water

We have a winner – Deklerk ! Goes at 5 mph and looks back at us all the time talking about things we may see while not actually looking for them. !

Best Natural Wonder

Tommy Lee on Instagram . Close second, Victoria Falls. Amazing to first fly over and then to walk around getting absolutely drenched

Most Impressive Animal

Tommy Lee on Instagram . Close second, coming around corner and seeing a massive bull elephant on the move and coming towards us . The Lions were also impressive but never got as close . I could look at Zebras all day

Most Disappointing Animal

We met the shyest Meerkats in the world. Assured they would climb all over us . Ah nope. Cute animals but think they must be part French

Favourite Frog

Claude the Baugette Botherer. Didn’t say much which is good because we didn’t understand much

Favourite Meal

A Melbourne Cup field. The food at River Club and Sable Alley were amazing and then we hit France ! Can’t choose so let’s just tease

Best French Village

All good and a lot of similarities with winding narrow lanes but winner is Seguret

Best Coffee

The first cappuccino we had in France was the best although did finally track down a Cortado on last day in Johburg. Started to get use to all the cream in France and then it stopped and replaced with just steamed milk froth 😢🇫🇷

Best Wine Tasting

6 tastes in 10 mins was hard to beat in Seguret. Didn’t visit a lot of wineries as had enough supplies for the week after first two 😏

Best Beer

Small field but blowing the froth of a couple at La Cave de Rave in Funtown while sitting in the sun on a glorious afternoon was hard to beat. A couple of local tarts tried to pick us up but we hadn’t drunk that much !

Best Hotel Complex

The Emperors Palace complex near the Johburg airport was an impressive place with 3 levels of accomodation, eateries and a casino .

Best Sunset

There were many to choose from but hard to go past first night at River Club. The Zambesi river enhances everything . Doesn’t hurt of course that we always drank at Sunset 🕺🏻

Best Sunset Ruined

The last night at Kalahari should have been the best. Perfect sunset and a trunk full of grog. Instead we got a 30 min lecture on the rivers of Botswana by Deklerk!

Best Sunrise

Another Melbourne Cup field but the winner was Camp Kalahari with the Pelicans in th background. Stunning

Best Impersonation of a Monty Python Film

“I don’t wanna talk to you no more, you empty headed animal food trough wiper! I fart in your general direction! Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries! Now, go away, or I shall taunt you a second time-a!”

All good things end eventually and so CMBM draws to a close with a final morning in Johburg at Mondior before catching the Qantas Dreamliner home in Premium Economy . We allowed 4 hrs in Sydney for transfer from international to domestic as we know from past experience what a nightmare it can be . Good nights sleep but still a long day for sure and then decision will be made on whether to keep going to Nambour when we hit Brisbane around 8 pm on Thursday night . Pretty sure we will keep going ….

Down for a final big breakfast . The Mondior has been great with one glaring issue for a large complex near the airport for passengers – the in room wifi is crap ! Biggest concern this morning though is another 36 hrs limping around with this ankle. It hurts to put weight in at present which is going to make it tricky. Have it strapped up,to help with that but then that increases the swelling ! We have the late checkout at 1 pm then leave for airport at 2 pm expectingQantas to be open around 230 pm for a 540 pm flight. We have to get through passport control of course but actually hoping to spend an hour or two in Qantas aligned Aspire lounge. Sat around airports long enough in last week with the GU. Business upgrade unsuccessful but no big deal, PE is a good product and don’t have to listen to Arabic PA announcements as well anymore 😏

The breakfast was very filling which will keep,us going until mid afternoon . Packing pretty simple now as using two bags each as our smaller safari bag becomes dirty clothes bag which makes it easy for CLP, to do my washing when we get home. I am thoughtful like that . A final walk/limp around the complex and out into sunshine on this glorious final morning . Walked across to the top level D’Oreal Grande hotel here – Mondior is the second level – and what a stunning place

We explained we were staying at the Mondior but is it ok to leave our Merc out the front with the other 27 ? Of course Sir feel free to walk around and see what you could afford if you had worked until 65 . First smart ass have met in 3 weeks 😏 We even fronted the poolside cafe and asked if we could have a coffee even though with the dregs at Mondior. Of course . Got a menu and bugger me they have Cortado and only took 50,000 klms air travel to find one ! Was about to order some scones or similar when same helpful lady came up and said “ The coffees are free but you will have to pay for any food . Can we wash your Merc while you wait Sir “ “ Sweetheart, if you can find it go for it and a polish wouldn’t hurt . Number plate is FMS – 069” We didn’t order any food 😂

A rather salubrious ending to a rather salubrious holiday . We have our luggage all now so even if screwed by Qantas tonight can send our luggage to Flashman Inc now at their convenience.

Following on from a very lucky morning we headed out a bit early and bugger me Qantas check in was open 4 hrs before flight. Checked in with Smiley Face 1 and then headed to dreaded Passport Control. Another good experience and we were lounge adjacent by 230 pm with almost 2.5 hrs to “boarding at this stage” . It’s called the Aspire Lounge and can enter as a QC member. I asked Smiley Face 2 on entry “ Was this the job you always Aspired to?” Blank look. Lounge , nice and quiet with a bar and good food .

Qantas is a double act here with QF 63 arriving around 4pm and then becoming QF 64 and leaving 540 pm. Pretty quick turn around for moi and why QF 64 is often a bit late leaving. Using the excellent Flight Radar app it seems QF 63 is actually a little ahead of schedule 🤞

Ah no, 10 mins late but fun watching it do 3 laps. Wisely we didn’t hook in too much at club as still a long 24 hrs ahead and always well looked after on Qantas . The inefficiency at this airport never ceases to amaze. Approaching Gate 18 we saw people lined up with no signage except Qantas in the distance . Seems like a bag check before entering the next waiting area 😏 About 60 people lined up and one person at a desk. As we got closer saw an Economy Sign . Where is BC or PE? No sign but a man standing at an empty desk. CLP suggested we try it and asked about PE and he said ok and checked bag . We then walked into a small waiting area for about 40 people with 20 sitting down. Lady walked up and said this is only for wheelchair passengers. Well you have a lot then dont you 🤔 Maybe a sign would help Numbnuts 🤦🏻‍♂️ Nope , just put up a barrier rope and people might work out at least where not to sit ! No board or nothing to see any updates , not that they update. Will check my 17 apps but my left nut and 60 Rand says we ain’t leaving at 1740 😏 oh that’s right, no wifi here 🤦🏻‍♂️ At least the crew is here and a female pilot. Could be in trouble if she has to reverse park.

Again we experience the complete inefficiencies of OR Tambo for boarding as well. No fucking clue. They start to board business but in fact just move them to another holding pen. Everyone else stands up and moves forward of course. We stand there for at least 30 mins and not a word. Then BC start moving and a lone female comes to the throng and says something inaudible so everyone starts moving forward . Anyway we got on and found our seats . The plane is totally full so await the joys of disembarking. We left almost an hour late and maybe arrive 45 mins late at this stage which should be ok. Just not sure can deal with the ignorant masses one more time . As always happens am totally over air travel. Until the next time .😏

Qantas PE has lost a little sparkle. Still good but not as great as remember. Anyway it was a tough flight after last 36 hrs . Again the plane is full of many morons including the one across aisle who had feet up, on phone and no seatbelt as heading down runway for takeoff 🤦🏻‍♂️

We landed about 35 mins late and passport and immigration ok but that domestic transfer at Sydney is a pain in the ass. We did get on a plane leaving an hour earlier . Yay . It just got delayed 30 mins at least 😂 More time in Qantas Club which is rather crowded

Anyhoo that is enough from this trip folks . Time for some rest

And so it begins – the possible 48 hours from Hell tour. Pretty good nights sleep had us as prepared as best could be for what lies ahead. A quick trip to Boo Lingerie first for a last French treat before hitting the road around 9 am for drive to Avignon TGV for the train to Lyon airport . Train leaves at 10:39 am for hour trip and then flight is scheduled for 4 pm to Dubai so we have left plenty of time if everything runs smoothly.

When Emirates bought forward our first flight some months ago we were left with a pesky 8 hr layover starting at midnight in the Dubai Airport. Lounge access is expensive and really not going to hook in between midnight and 7 am so decided to opt for the 7-12 hr option at Dubai International at airport in what is know as the “High End Hooker Special “. Be amazed if get any sleep but at least a break from GU for a few hours. Once again not a lot of thought went into seats on flight as again at end of plane so last off, not that there is any rush at either end.

Arrived at Avignon TGV with plenty time to spare so got sucked into a coffee. We then of course had to pay 1 Euro to use the toilet ! Part 1 of the 48 hrs from Hell was always going to be the easiest . They get progressively worse and longer as we go although suspect the 3rd leg of 8.5 hrs Dubai to Johburg could be the worse.

TGV run an efficient operation and so train arrived in plenty of time. Too early for Emirates to be open of course. We stood around waiting until 12:55 ( 3 hrs before flight) and then checked in easily and security ok so should be able to make good use of some paid lounge access. There are two lounges and they charge 33 Euro each for access. Ok for 2-3 hrs. Rocked up to first one and told it was only for travellers to European countries , you need to go to the one upstairs just after immigration. Ok that’s cool . Um , Immigration is closed and still is an hour later at 2 pm. We need Gate C but still can’t enter passport control. I smell another South African like pain in the ass when they open.

We found a perfectly nice salad for lunch and now just sitting around waiting for passport control. Once we go there we are sitting in gate lounge waiting again. Overall a poor experience at Lyon airport with your typical French inefficiency .

The flight was good as plane only half full. Of course not finished with French assholes just yet . A French woman around 50 was rather rude in waiting area with regard seating and fuck me if she wasn’t in front of us in plane. She had 3 seats to herself. She yabbered to attendant for 5 mins . She shifted to middle seat in front of me and reclined for whole flight including meals. She shifted back to window a couple of hours out and left both seats reclined. No fucking idea. Same idiot who has to be told on landing to put seats back and window shade up. We were happy when first boarded though 😏

Met on arrival by hotel staff and a fair hike to hotel but all worked well. Very nice room indeed

Not a great nights sleep as never would be for me but a good idea. Plane delayed 30 mins this morning at present to 10:25 , the bigger issue there is arriving in Johburg later after 5 pm. It’s an A 380 again and suspect this will be the worse flight of them all . Time will tell . At least didn’t have to pass through Security again . Not much option for food so opted for Maccas as almost a safe bet …. If u like Chicken sausage of course. Then we start the wait at Gate 31 , at least they have the LILO like chairs to sit in for a couple of hours

So we had the prettiest A 380 certainly but one of the slowest sadly . The exit row seats this time were in better position or so as thought. The real sweet deal was plane only half full so while we looked like we might get away just the 30 mins late we actually sat on the tarmac for another 30 mins and then pushed back and waited another 30 mins while 45 planes took off in front of us ! Basically 90 mins late . We had always toyed with idea of 20 USD$ each for a small bottle of Moët Chandon and this seems perfect time to try as had great crew. Asked the male attendant and he said sure will put in fridge now . 90 mins later they were cool at least 😏 And warm peanuts as well and he put second bottle on ice 👍🏻 The best part of deal though was we got it 15 minutes after take off like in business class rather than with dinner so am sure the 12 other passengers in our section wondered what was going on. We then kept the flutes for other drinks . Then they bought out a plastic cup of wine as well #IBF . Pickled and 6 hrs to go.

So after an excellent meal as usual with room to spread out the fly in the ointment appeared. No toilets nearby but was a galley and man those Sheilas in brown can yap. Any chance of sleep out the door with yapping and no dimming of cabin as middle of day. Oh well. The end result though was this flight was good and not the trauma expected even though 8 hrs is still 8 hrs of course .

Arrived an hour late and got through passport ok but bags and shuttle had us arriving at Mondior again around 7 pm. Another nice room with breakfast and late check out. Duck down the bar and had a drink and a burger but officially shagged now so time for bed.

And ankle is really stuffed for some reason. Maybe all the flights but really need to get home and rest it for a few days . 9 months after surgery this is not good but one is reminded of the 6 month CT report of course 😢

CMBM – Frogland Day 6

Posted: March 26, 2023 in Uncategorized

Glorious night last night looking out our window on the second floor . We had the windows open to let some breeze in and as I leant out did feel a slight pressure on my back and two hands but was probably imagining it ….

Last full day in Frogland which is sad of course .One always gets to a point where one is happy to head home and probably at that point but there have been so many new and wonderful memories it’s hard not to want more. And of course it also means we are approaching the 48 hrs from Hell Tour. We do the old Planes, Trains and Automobiles switcheroo and at this stage all trains and planes we need are running except when they stop at stations and airports . 24 hrs is a long time in travel, just ask Jack Bauer

It was dark when we arose this morning – well ok darker than usual – at 630 am. Had the sun also joined the strike🤔 Ah no, it’s start of daylight saving . Probably better today than tomorrow which may have really thrown us . Todays plan then is casual . Head out mid morning to Ill da Sook for a last French coffee and a little wander. Apparently there is an Antique Market on so just hope CLP isn’t tempted by a good offer for me .

Pleasant day with some cloud cover and a little chill. The place was a jumping with markets up and down the streets and canals. Much like yesterday some tempting food but not a lot else to tempt this LBD. We had a coffee but again the magic has passed

Such a nice day for a walk so we kept looking at more markets . Ok ya got me , we were lost 😏

Headed back home for some lunch with some more baguettes that we had picked up this morning with fresh ham and cheese. Yummo 🥖🇫🇷

Quiet afternoon with some rather changeable weather . We did majority of packing so an easy morning tomorrow even though it is a relaxed morning with a drive to Avignon TGV planned at 9 am. Plenty of time to hit our fave boo lingerie one last time 🥖

I see the sun has gone . Not sure if cloudy or it isn’t 5 pm yet but hell why would you risk it and not start drinking now 🤦🏻‍♂️ A Spritzer and two bottles of wine is the norm so why change now . Later dudes , it’s been a blast .

CMBM – Frogland Day 5

Posted: March 25, 2023 in Uncategorized

And so the weekend is here and with it comes markets mayhem and marauding madames 😏 Mind you we did pretty well in the fresh food caper last night for dinner so mostly a look see on a glorious morning

We were able to fill tank with petrol yesterday so our options are more varied again today . A stroll to the markets first up and then drive out of town to avoid the crowds until about 3 pm maybe. Supposed to be chance of some rain tomorrow but should be a good day today . Of course now we have to watch closely any further issues with trains for Monday and then the usual flight monitoring ensues. If the train doesn’t get us to airport on time on Monday then the whole ball of string unravels. Let’s panic about that tomorrow Viva La France 🇫🇷

Markets had an impressive array of food including some huge Paellas. Unfortunately no Patellas which would be handy with now my knee feels at present

Then it was time to head towards Mont Ventoux via Sault. Not sure if we can get to top of Mont but will give it an Aussie crack. There was snow there last week . Sault is another classic village to walk around and we sat down for usual cafe. More traditional coffees last couple of days so am kinda missing my cream fix 😢

As we headed off up the mountain we came across my fave group of assholes – cyclists by the dozen. Take an arrogant group of people and then make them French ! Signs said to stop about 5 klm from top which suited us as there was a rather picturesque chalet there for a beer and a bite . Or several bites as it turned out

Well that hit the spot and as often happens the trip down was a lot quicker . Back in Pleased da Funtown by 130 pm for a relaxing afternoon. Mind you a relaxing day is also planned for tomorrow so may have to spice things up at some stage

It doesn’t get more exciting then a walk to a supermarket eh. We headed off under a warm Tuscan Sun which is odd because we are not in Italy. We had a couple of donkeys on standby in case we needed more alcohol. At the end of the day a very small shop .

It’s now 5 pm so that is drinkies time and I need to concentrate for that so will bid au revoir as sadly our French Soujourn nears an end . And we know what comes after that …….

CMBM – Frogland Day 4

Posted: March 24, 2023 in Uncategorized

After being mobbed on the streets early mornings I decided time to blend in a bit better so went beret hunting yesterday in shops , so basically between 10-12am or 3-5pm 😏. Choices were limited so improvised but it didn’t fool anyone, not sure why 🤔

Funtown of course has better shops because the frogs are jumping with joy and before too long found the perfect one. They also sold canes so winner winner poulet dinner. Todays mission was “Don’t forget the Baguette” and make it deux. I hobbled off and blended in well especially now that my sun bleached complexion from Africa had returned more to simply old man. May have to reconsider the smoking though, Frogs suddenly seem tall to me

Suitably sated after usual solid breakfast it was time for todays plan – Av a go in Avignon 🇫🇷. Diesel fuel still a bit of an issue so will visit another town today and see what the weekend brings . I knew we were having a break from the sweet stuff today at our Boo da Lingerie but couldn’t resist picking up a French Tart this morning to take on our trip

Avignon is a much bigger city of course with a wall around and a half finished bridge amongst its highlights .Also of course the Palace of the Popes . Did the tour but was expecting a more ornate place than rather one large empty room after another, one with a few resting Popes whom I assumed were dead

JL stayed behind on crowd control and did a great job

Must be time for the first coffee of today , pay attention there will be a quiz. It was called The French Coffee cafe so what could go wrong. Paper cups were a concern as was trucks driving past rather close. It was ok but there has been a decline in form of late . No decline in amount of cream mind you 😏

Time then to roam the streets and laneways of Avignon. Once again not many shops of interest but certainly a pleasant stroll . It was time to double up on baguettes for lunch but this time with filling .

Now for the famous half finished bridge . Do we want to do the tour ? Ah no, a couple of pics will suffice thanks

We have seen a great mix of villages/ towns so far this trip and the next couple of days will be a bit quieter . After all there are markets in Pleased da Funtown tomorrow . This could lead to another change in name of town I fear . Meanwhile it’s farewell from Avignon

On way home did a slight detour to Carpentras as only about 10 minutes from Funtown. Another stroll, another coffee, and the standard mix of dry fountains, cathedrals , bell towers and smokers. And a coffee with no cream !

Returning home mid afternoon left us some to chill and then to try a local restaurant for an afternoon beer in the sun. Easy walk, at least to get there 😏 A lovely end to another great day spent with family seeing new sights . And drinking alcohol 🕺🏻🇫🇷