Motorway Madness

One of the things I had forgotten about England is the sheer amount of traffic that you encounter, and the inevitable delays that this brings. We were up in Lancashire at the weekend for a friend’s seventieth birthday celebration. I entered our destination in my satnav and it forecast a three and a half hour journey; it took six. Of course, we stopped off for a lunchtime snack at Norton Canes on the M6 Toll, but to avoid congestion on the M25, the machine diverted us along the M4 and then up past Marlow to join the M40 near High Wycombe. Then we saw signs that the M40 was closed north of Banbury. This required us to queue for an hour whiles three lanes of traffic jostled each other down to a single lane to leave the motorway and crawl round the northern edge of Banbury,. Then it was across country on single carriageway to the M42 north of Coventry. Coming back, we had a similar time estimate and a similar experience. Bowling along happily we made good progress all the way back to the M40, then suddenly stopped. Switch the engine off and wait. Equally suddenly, half an hour later we all set off again on an apparently clear motorway - for about 10km, then everything slowed to a crawl again all the way down to Banbury where once again we oft the motorway, this time by choice and used the A roads down to Bicester to rejoin the M40 at the next junction. A lunch stop soon after, eating sandwiches in the car, then off agin to our daughter’s home where we arrives (yes) six hours after setting out. By comparison I am really looking forward to the mot


An Out-Of-Season Holiday

I'm over in England just now, partly to look after our grandchildren while Mum is in South Africa on a business trip, and partly to attend a friend's seventieth birthday celebration. It also gives me the opportunity to get together with my cousin and her doughtier and grandson, with my sister-in-law and her partner, and with my brother, so it's an enjoyable time. The last time I was here was in February on our way back from New Zealand. Which leads me to ask myself, why oh why do I always seem to come to England when it's cold, often wet, and when the days are so short? The answer, basically is, circumstances. I should have been here in the summer but that turned out not to be possible. The cheapest way of travelling to New Zealand - or any other long haul destination, for that matter - is to ask Trailfinders to book everything from/to Heathrow and then we make our own arrangements for travel between Spain and the UK, usually taking extra time out to spend with family and friends. On the other hand, there are hidden advantages; I read on FB that my friends back home are having to cope with the arrival of colder weather in Andalucía. Well folks, I'm looking forward to coming home at the end of the month to warmer weather, so there.