Prologue

Prologue

It wasn’t supposed to start like this.

There was a plan, it was very detailed every penny accounted for.

It is a good job we both believe in fate, the last month has been one thing after the other that wasn't on the plan.

Part 1 of the plan, Phil & Caro leave in the Sergio the Suzuki our belongs follow them a couple of days later.

Part 2 Sarah & I leave in Gary the Galaxy a month later with the big red one aka Chester.

Today is nearly one month later & I am nearly ready to start Part 2 but I am at Lisbon Airport waiting for a very full flight back to Burwell on the busiest & most expensive week of the year August Bank Holiday & the last week of the English school holidays – not part of the plan.

Phil had been struggling with stress of the move, the loneliness after Caro & the boys had gone but the worst bit was the forest fires; it was constant; for 3 days & nights; a week later his body said “No” he had a transient run of AF but bad enough to spend the day in our rural distract hospital in Abrantes. Fortunately, the doctors are from Coimbra so they speak a reasonable level of English, unfortunately the same cannot be said about the nursing staff however good their nursing skills are. Thankfully our English friend & neighbour Anita could be the invalids escort for the day & her language skills are fab after 6 years being an ex-pat.

So after a very long day in the office my mum paid a ridiculous amount of money for me to fly out on the first available flight.

The old man was unbelievably pleased to see me but my adventure had begun. I thought I had worked out the train times from Lisbon to the country side but due to a tight time line I missed it. I then stood in Europcar queue to be offered the opportunity to pay nearly €200 to hire a car. No thank you I can do public transport!

Virgin media once again failed me no international signal – phumpppphhh.

Vodafone kiosk at the airport the most helpful young gentleman sorted it in minutes & he spoke great English.

Down to the Metro I went €1.90 for 3 stops on the Vermhla line. All the way upstairs to the ticket office €9.90 to Abrantes 2 hours later in the arms of a very relieved husband - EASY!

I was learning Portuguese already thanks to the 2 elderly nuns that were sitting next to me not speaking English but determined that the hussy with the large cleavage hanging out of her vest top would get off at the right station. They were lovely.

3 days pass including 2 nights at Fundada Festa, Phil must be ill he has given up the booze. We decide that he is fit enough to be left on his own again & that is why I am now at the airport waiting to get to Burwell so I can start Part 2 of the Plan in less than 48hours with just an 1600 mile drive ahead of me.

G&T is the answer, what is the question. Chin chin.

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Quinta Do Centro, Rua do Pinhal, Melrica, Vila De Rei,

Castelo Branco 6110-138, PORTUGAL

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