Good grief is it STILL January? What sorcery is this?

How is it possible that it can already feel an absolute eternity since New Year’s Eve but we are still not quite three weeks into January?

How is it possible that the weeks can stealth by at such a pace but the month seems to never end?

What is this lunacy? Is there a problem with the space-time continuum?
I hope not, that could cause severe disruption to our upcoming flights!
I’m already a little apprehensive about them on account that they were only €4,99.

  • Do they still bother doing the FULL safety checks for that price?
  • Are we likely to see an ‘L’ Plate flapping around on the nose of the plane?
  • Do they even bother landing or are you just expected to jump out near the airport as they throw your luggage after you?

I’m joking, of course, I know that aviation safety is taken very seriously.

We have been informed by my sister-in-law that we will be enjoying a Highland Special Afternoon Tea at Tylney Hall in Hampshire, which is a lovely decadent surprise and also the perfect excuse for my husband and brother to don their full Kilt attire. We do try to ensure that there is at least one legitimate reason a year to do so.

The salon at Tylney Hall

It does, however, prompt the difficulty of how to transport full kilt attire when travelling light with hand luggage only. My outfit is reasonably less onerous, a timeless black dress with a Tartan sash and clan brooch added for novelty factor but my husbands full Prince Charlie outfit is rather cumbersome in its entirety, though since we will be travelling on Burns night itself, I would think that the answer is fairly obvious as to how to get it there! Ha Ha Ha.

Imagine the stir that will cause at the airport.

The French seemingly adore the Scottish, much more so than they would admit to tolerating the English, though these days it is more in jest rather than any serious cultural or national disagreement (unless you happen to be a football hooligan!).

It is a throwback to the Auld Alliance which dates way back to 1295 and at various significant intervals during the centuries since. The unity between France and Scotland originally existed due to their collective interest in stemming England’s somewhat determined plans to extend the Kingdom to which the Scottish clearly felt,

“Away’n’ bile yer bawsack, ye radge wee shoo’er o’shite”

and the French said something along the lines of:
“You don’t frighten us, English pig-dogs! Go and boil your bottoms, sons of a silly person. I blow my nose at your so-called King, you and all your silly English knnnniggets!”*

to which the English replied……

followed swiftly by……

So, yes, my guess is that rather than endure any embarrassment if he were to travel in his full Kilt regalia (minus ‘skean dhu’ as this would definitely not be allowed on board) my husband would simply be asked if he can pose for photographs. 

Sadly Highclere castle will be closed during our brief visit, so we will not be able to arrange a visit there, shame since it is literally around the corner from where my brother and his wife live. They did take us to it once, a couple of years ago, just for a quick peek at the outside and then to the top of Beacon Hill where the tomb of the Fifth Earl of Carnarvon is situated but at that point, unlike seemingly the rest of the entire living world, we hadn’t seen a single episode of Downton Abbey so sadly it was all quite lost on us.

We took a very quick picture (see below) and probably coming across as fairly disinterested, said something like “Yeah nice, where next?” and that was that.

So, in true ‘us’ style, yet again we completely missed the boat.

By the way, my husband’s working week last week consisted of four and a half days and 1600 kms of driving around almost the entire North West quadrant of France, calling in at various customers and culminating in an overnight in Paris where he and his work colleagues were treated to an evening in the Champs Elysées at the Pau Brasil Cabaret Club and restaurant where the food was plentiful, the champagne was never ending and the scantily clad dancers, resplendently festooned in their feathers were on fine form. Not bad really for your annual office party. Followed by a leisurely drive home on Friday, arriving shortly after lunch.  Apparently, I’m supposed to feel sorry for him!

Meanwhile, I have mostly been at home, either entirely engaged in planning our various trips or working on my most recent writing project.

Apart from, that is when reading or responding to letters from the useless, ineffectual, incompetent arsehole solicitors that are currently mishandling the estate of a dear, elderly, much-loved Aunt who passed last year.

Numerous months on and we seem to have made little or no headway at all, not to mention that they have provided poor advice, they have repeatedly duplicated work which they will undoubtedly charge for, they have complicated issues that perhaps would otherwise have been sorted long before now and in the process they have managed to thoroughly piss off a rather mild-mannered bunch of family members.

Here was the letter I most recently drafted:

Unfortunately, due to concern from very cautious family members, I have been requested to remove the ‘draft’ letter from my blog for fear that it may go viral and cause a stir… ha ha ha chance would be a fine thing. 
Obviously, no names, dates or even specific details of our current ongoing situation were mentioned and in the main it was merely my ‘opinion’ of the situation but some people obviously still felt sufficiently uneasy and with that in mind, I have removed the offending article. 
If you were prompt enough to read this blog within the first 36 hours of publication you would have been provided with the full, uncensored opportunity to read the 1,224 worded  letter that I drafted (but never sent), but today, Sunday 21st January at 14:30 it has been removed and may forever remain under wraps, more’s the pity. 
For this I can only apologise. 
 Have a great weekend all and perhaps for those of you who aren’t having such a great one, just remember there is always some poor sod somewhere having an even worse one!

The Virtual Recluse

*Excerpt taken from Monty Python and The Holy Grail – 1975