Monday, 20 February 2012
Goodby Jamaica, hello Sutton, mon
sunny, mild, temps about freezing
Yes, we're back home - otherwise the weather report above would be disconcerting (and disappointing) for Jamaica.
We had just the best time! And just what the 'doctor' ordered. Peace and quiet....lots of pampering. Great food. We even liked it when it rained, though that wasn't often. For our last two days we were moved from the little Blue cottage, to a larger one (yes, an upgrade!) on a small spit of land jutting into the sea....that's the view from our bedroom.
Michael is saying 'goodbye'. Well, first we had breakfast....as you can see.
The travel day was long, as they so often are. The Air Canada flight didn't leave until 6:30pm, which gave us much of the day by the beach. It still amazes me that we can have papayas on the terrace overlooking the sea in the morning and go to bed with snow outside that night.
After the last swim we returned to our cottage, ordered lunch and then I showered (remembering to take my sea salted bathing suit in with me) - then Michael's turn. We did the last of our packing and checked out by 2:30. It's a 90 minute drive to Montego Bay - but a very pleasant one.
We'd pre-booked the exit row seats, and checked our luggage at the AC counter...only to discover the flight was delayed. Now leaving at 7:45. We sat in the lounge...and waited....and waited....no plane outside the window, which as you know is never a good thing. finally at 8pm it arrived.
But they'd changed the aircraft - and suddenly our extra-legroom exit row was a regular (very squished) seat. I asked the flight attendant (while Michael tried to disappear into the seat) if the exit row was available, could we switch, since we'd requested them.
she came back a few minutes later with the great news that because of the plane change, everyone's ticket had gotten screwed up, and they'd put a baby in the exit row - again, not a good thing. So the baby (and family) had to leave - and take our seats.
Well - talk about turbulance. The mother was furious- absolutely apoplectic, to the point where she wouldn't even look at us or talk to us as we tried to change seats - just snarled. I can completely understand her annoyance....the exit row seat on this particular plane had huge legroom - room enough for a jacuzzi, a bed and a sofa (almost)....I'm 6 feet tall and stretched out my tip toes didn't reach the seat in front of me.
but the regular seats had people breathing on the person in front of them - it was awful.
This mother's problem wasn't sitting in the tight seats, it was being ejected from Eden.
But, well, too bad. We jumped into them and buckled up, and the woman in front also nabbed the seat next to me - she was lovely and we had a terrific chat during the 4 hour flight about iPads etc. We don't have one, and she showed me hers and described how it might be helpful for Michael and me.
The flight landed at just after midnight - then the race to customs and immigration, which is notoriously packed at the Montreal airport. Sure enough, our flight landed at the same time as at least one other....we spied each other down the corridor, with the escalator to immigration between us. Then, like knights of the middleages - we paused, then all ran toward each other. fortunately we didn't clash, or cross swords....but we did converge on the escalator.
Happily, we were near the front, so there was only a small wait. Then through customs, got the bags and into taxi and home by 1am. We decided to drive straight down to Sutton, getting here at 3am.
So wonderful to be home. Feels as though we've been gone longer. My Assistant Lise had left a vase of roses and gummi bears (for me) and chocolate wafers (for Michael). We crawled into bed and ate the treat - marveling at the day.
Now we're all unpacked (often that can take a week or more) - laundry is even done! And sneaking slowly back into real life. Refreshed.
I knew I was exhausted - indeed, I was even getting a little worried about my physical, but also mental, state....felt over burdened and staggering. But now feel so much better.
I'll be starting the next book (book 9) on March 1st. I've decided to take my time....when you read (as I hope you will) THE BEAUTIFUL MYSTERY, you'll see why book 9 needs to be written carefully... Like holding something delicate, fragile, alive...and needing to take care.
Fun time, as I approach the first words of the first draft. And try not to get all scared. though I think fear is just part of the deal. It means I care. But there's also joy, at being back with characters whose lives fascinate me - and whom I love.
So nice to be home - and back with you!