Day 14 – Monday – Dublin to Nottingham

Posted: 02/07/2012 in Holiday

The alarm had been set for 6am but we were awake before it went off. Quick showers. Deirdre had put together a take-away breakfast for us. Much appreciated. As we were putting the last bits and pieces in the car, a taxi turned up to take a group of Americans to the port, so Mark suggested following him. He took a different route – not through town – and we were there in good time. What a contrast to the boat over! The Stena+ lounge was packed with families. It was truly awful. All the window seats had gone, taken mostly by kids. When we were that age, parents would have told their offspring to move and let the adults sit down. Now it seems their little darlings take priority. We found a table and had some of the complimentary cold buffet. I don’t understand why people order those over-priced cooked breakfasts on the boat, when the free stuff is perfectly adequate for a journey of this length.

Shortly after we sat down, the volume on the nearby TV shot up. It was showing some noisy film. I went to the staff to complain (politely) and was told they couldn’t discriminate against parents who wanted the volume up! And what about the rest of us? I pointed out that the Stena+ lounge had been advertised as ‘VIP luxury’ but this young crewmember just turned his back on me. Definitely in need of some customer service training. VIP? Vile Interfering Parents! We moved to another area, but were then subjected to the screams of kids playing on the Wii! We managed to survive the journey. I made sure to have some of the complimentary wine – so what if it was only 10:30am!

Disembarkation was fairly rapid. After about an hour we stopped at the services to have some of the Ariel House breakfast. We’d stopped here last year too. The 55 Café where we’d had breakfast that day had been demolished, though, and the area was fenced off and overgrown. Now there was just a petrol station, with a shop and a coffee machine. We sat in the car and delved into the bag. There were two big tubs of yoghurt, granola, fresh fruit, bread, cheese, cakes and biscuits! We had the yoghurt, granola and fruit, which were gorgeous, leaving the rest for later. Yet another uneventful journey. We got home about six, dumped our bags and stuff in the hall, and headed to West Bridgford to pick up Sam and Dave (the cats). They were fine, and didn’t seem at all grumpy with us for having abandoned them for two weeks. I often think of catteries as cat prison, but this place was more like a five-star hotel. Back home, we dug out the rest of our breakfast for tea. And very good it was too.

Breakfast for Tea

Shattered after such a long day, we decided to leave the unpacking till tomorrow. So good to be back in our own bed again. Night-night!



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