January 8, 2007

January 6-7: from Denver to Kings Langley

I got a picture of Rob in front of the house, but I had the shutterspeed set to some crazy thing (from taking to take pictures of Brownies skating past me at the Cookie Rally last friday). So that turned out as nothing more than a Rob shaped blur. I got a couple of blurry Roz's as well until I got to this one.

Denver International Airport: Saturday 4:30 pm MST

I had gotten a lot of packing done on Thursday and Friday which meant Saturday was fairly laid back. I ran out to a couple of drug stores in the morning trying to find saline in a 3 oz. or less container (the only allowable size for a liquid or gel on airlines these days). I ended up buying some expensive multi-purpose solution in a 2 oz. container having no luck finding the saline. :-P

When I returned I found Rob up on a ladder (which was firmly planted on a bunch of snow and ice) scraping the 5 inches of ice off the top of the gutters and removing as much snow as he could reach from the roof.

My sister came over around noon to switch out cars with my cousin (my cousin wasn’t comfortable being left with our manual transmission) and I gave her a hefty packet of child care info. (what time school starts. when the kids have extracurriculars. etc. )

My mom arrived at 1:30 and we packed up her mini-van and were ready to go. Next came the hard part.

When Anna woke up this morning the first thing she said to me was, “I don’t want you to go. I’m going to miss you.” She cried for a teeny bit, but then seemed to get over it. Later in the morning Nathan pulled me aside and told me that he was really go to miss me. (I managed to keep it together then, but when I told my sister about it later on the phone I got all choked up.)

So we gave hugs before leaving. But then the kids got busy with Lego Star Wars on the computer and playing with Mary and it seemed that they were content to go back to life as usual.

Rob and I have been amazed at the wonderful feeling of lightness at traveling without having to keep tabs on 3 little monkeys (and help them schlep their stuff). We checked our luggage in without any problems. The “normal people” line moved 2 or 3 times as fast as the first class line. Woo hoo! Even security went smoothly. The only boo boo so far is that we didn’t exchange our cash before hitting security. (I had no idea where the exchange was and Rob didn’t mention that it was before security until we’d already taken the train away from security. :-P So I sent him back with the cash and he’ll just have to do security again. But this time I have all his stuff so at least he won’t have to worry about that.)

Kings Langsley: Monday 3:20 am GMT

Our flight in Denver ended up leaving an hour late and since we had only an hour layover in Chicago we raced from one plane to the other. But we ended up sitting on that second plane for about 45 minutes before taking off. :-P

We got in to Heathrow on time and buzzed through rather quickly to Roz. We were a little taken aback by the state of the airport, though. As we walked off the plane we were greeted by buckets on the floor catching the rain as it dripped into the building.

Roz drove us back to her place in Kings Langley (though no one seems to know what a “Langley” is) and we met Alan for the first time. After some good conversation we headed out for a bit of a walk in the misty rain along the canal that runs behind their house. We saw ducks and two swans and I thought I saw a pheasant but Roz says it must have been something else because they don’t have pheasants around here. (And it was a bit small for a pheasant, but didn’t look very chickeny.)

Then we went to Hemel Hempsted for high tea with Roz’s parents and more great conversation. Rob and I were definitely drooping by this time (after having not slept more than a couple of hours on the plane) but Roz is a hard task master and told us that we shouldn’t go to bed until 9 each night if we hoped to adjust to the time change within 3 days. Otherwise she says it takes 4 days.

We have hopes of taking the train in to London tomorrow and bumming around a bit.


  1. hehe that is not a bathroom Meg. That is a toilet. I don't know what they call them in England but we in Oz call them toilets. Our bathrooms are almost always separate to the toilet unless it's an ensuite (not sure on the spelling) that one is a lot smaller than ours, but it looks about the usual size. Say does the water in the bowl go to the top like in America?

  2. rofl...that is what intrigued me about America. No on and off switch at the power points. Your power is way less than ours. I don't know what English power runs at. It has to do with safety I guess. That power point is even different to ours. I cant tell whether the switch turns off upwards or downwards. Tiss too black. Ours turns on when the switch is pushed down. If they are the same as here one hole is for earth, the other two are negative and positive points. You are going to find a lot of difference betwixt England and America oh and they drive on the right side of the road too, not the right but left which is the right side to drive on..rofl...

  3. Are their kitchen sinks different to yours? And do they have laundry's over there. When I was in America, both trudy and her mum had their washing machines and driers in their garages. No laundry to be found anywhere. No clothes lines either. Do they have clothes lines in England?

  4. Here (NC) we have the toilet and shower in the same room (the bathroom) and a separate room for the sink and mirror (anteroom).

  5. Basically, high tea is a small snack served with tea in the late afternoon, before supper.

  6. Yeah, Jet Lag sucks. Hope you enjoy London, it's a fun city. :)

  7. In the past it was usually served around 4pm if I remember correctly, with dinner being served at 8pm.

  8. That is a toilet. Bathrooms usually have a bath and/or shower as well as the toilet. And no, the water level is quite low *has just checked one of her own* Toilets are generally quite small, but can vary in size depending on the size of the house.

  9. Yep, we push the button down to turn things on, and up to turn off. Most sockets have switches, but rarely they don't (well, I know they do in Ireland...).
    We drive on the right side of the road, everyone else in on the wrong side hehe.

  10. We have a 'Utility room' which is basically a landry room, with a washer, dryer, sink and cupboards. We also have a clothes line, as well as airing horses, and airing closets.

  11. I've never been to England. These outlets are funky!

  12. I think England and Australia are very much alike in many ways hehe. Hey ivy, we drive on the same side as you, so we also drive on the right side and not the wrong rofl

  13. the water in the toilet bowls here go up the same amount they do in our house in FC as well as our house in SF, which is about 1/4 of the way from the bottom. they seem to flush more like airplane bowls, though. less swirling, more pouring.

  14. the kitchen sink is round. i'm not sure that i've seen a round sink in a kitchen before. in a bathroom, yes. but not a kitchen.

    and it has a nice draining board attached. that's rather old-fashioned in the states but roz says its normal here.

    they don't have a washer or dryer yet. they just moved in after christmas so they washer will arrive this thursday. though there's a spot for it in the kitchen, they're planning on putting it into an entryway closet.

    i haven't seen any clothes lines, yet. but then again, it's been so drizzly that i might not have noticed them because they don't have any laundry hanging out.

  15. well, i'm not entirely sure. but i get the impression that she was just going to serve tea (meaning some cakes, cheese, meat and tea). but when she found out that we were going to be really hungry, then she upped it to a high tea, meaning it would be more of an event with more food to it.

    there was quite a lot of food. we had tongue, ham and pork pie; four kinds of cheese; a pickle to go on the cheese that we decided was more like a chutney; lettuce and tomatoes with dressing; and two kinds of bread. oh, and tea, of course. after that we had scones with raspberry jam, leftover christmas cake, mini mince pies with rum butter, and more bread with jelly. and tea. then after a bit more chatting we had a fruit salad with cream poored over it.

  16. Did you eat some? How did it taste? And which animal was it?

  17. Lots of questions to answer:

    We do have a clothes line but it's not where it's going to be when I get organised enough to have it where I want it and you'd probably have to be searching for it to find it right now.

    The tounge was cow.

    High Tea is a working class tradition and is a whole meal. It's more filling than an afternoon tea which is more normally just a snack.


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