Day One: Part One
The previous night we had had a text message from Oggi saying that the lorry would be with us at about 9 o’clock in the morning, as the lorry had a trailer on the back of it could we suggest a secure lorry park where the driver could leave his trailer. Luckily we live in Poole so we thought that the ferry port would have facilities, a quick call to our youngest daughter’s other half (a Policeman) confirmed that this would be the best option.
An early start for us on the Saturday morning included putting harnesses onto the dog (Fenric) and the 3 cats (Greebo, Luna and Stinky Tinks). Fenric was put into the garage to keep him out of the way, and the cats went into their boxes, much to their disgust. We took final gas and electric readings and with a final cup of tea phoned them through. The family started arriving just before 9, ready to give a hand loading the lorry.
Another text from Oggi saying that the driver was not able to leave his trailer at the ferry port as it was for ferry traffic only, could we suggest anywhere else? As we were replying this massive artic and trailer turned into our road. Luckily our neighbours had parked on our side of the road effectively holding enough parking space for lorry and trailer, they were all quite happy to give up their parking spaces, maybe they were just happy to finally be getting rid of us.
The rest of the family arrived and the loading of the lorry got under way. Oggi had calculated that with 4 men it would take 4 hours, with the family lifting and shifting and the driver organising it took 2 and a half, even with an interfering Grandson trying to take over from the driver. A call from one of our Granddaughters informed us that one of the cats had exploded, on walking into the kitchen we understood what she meant. We know that the cats dislike their boxes with a passion but this was a new one on us, So it was Greebo out of his box, Jannette wiping him down with wet wipes while I cleaned out his box, thank heavens for French windows as we needed all of the fresh air that we could get.
The lorry was all loaded and the paperwork all signed, as the lorry gingerly drove away through the parked cars lining both sides of the road we thought that finally we were actually on our way. One final thing to do before we set off ourselves, a family breakfast, so 7 adults and 6 Grand kids descended on our local cafe for a final full English.
Breakfast done and it was time to load up Jannette’s 4x4 with the pets and the final bits and pieces, Fenric ending up with most room. Passports, both ours and the pets, were checked and double checked along with the ferry booking details. That was it, we were almost off, no mess, no fuss, no fanfares we were actually going. Just the final goodbyes to say, our next door neighbour’s gave us a lovely card wishing us well in our new life. Then it was the families turn, most were fine but our youngest daughter’s eyes started to water and that nearly set Jannette off. Kisses and cuddles all round and then it was our turn to load ourselves into the 4x4, as I’d not driven it before it was decided that I would drive to get used to her before getting to grips with driving on the ‘wrong’ side of the road.