Jan. 31st, 2009

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I haven't posted this week as I've been completely exhausted.  I didn't do much on Monday because I knew I was going to have a couple of strenuous-for-me days on Tuesday and Wednesday.  In the event they were both far more strenuous than I thought they would be.

On Tuesday John and I left home at 2.00 pm to travel down to Dudley for the following day's Board Meeting.  We got as far as Wetherby and Lucy started boiling over again.  The mechanic was supposed to have drained the system and replaced the dodgy pipes after the last time it happened and I know that John replaced the radiator cap.  We still had several litres of water in the boot so it wasn't a problem to have a very expensive coffee in Costa Coffee while we waited for the engine to cool down, and to refill the radiator.  It took a great deal of water!  We couldn't see it draining out underneath, however.

Fortunately we had refilled the water bottles because fifty miles further along the road, the same thing happened.  After we refilled the radiator we had to make a decision about whether to continue or turn back.  Since neither of us likes to admit defeat and the meeting was an important one, we decided to continue, but we could only do so at 55 mph and with the radiator and fan on full blast with the windows open so that we didn't suffocate.

We finally got to the Copthorne in Holly Hill at 9.00 pm.!  Thank goodness that on this occasion we'd been booked into a really good hotel, because we were able to get a meal, albeit a very expensive one from the a la carte, since they didn't appear to do table d'hote.  By that stage I really didn't care as we were so exhausted and hungry all we wanted to do was roll into bed.  We did have a very good meal, though.

I slept really well, which is unusual for me in a one-night hotel room, but it was very comfortable and quiet, the room was, unusually, not too hot and the single beds were huge.  Sadly John was awake most of the night with reflux.  He would have steak followed by a really rich chocolate thungummy.

In the morning we looked out and found out why it was so quiet.  Our room overlooked a canal basin with a few picturesque longboats and had a very pleasant view.  I stupidly forgot to photograph it, which was a pity because it looked really atmospheric with a heavy mist or light fog.

The Board meeting passed without incident and while I was there, John went to the Black Country Museum.  Apparently the Board is having its AGM there this year, so maybe I shall get another photographic opportunity at the hotel on that occasion.  It was, as usual, a busy meeting with a lot of business to get through, but we finished promptly at 3.30 pm.  I was already feeling exhausted.

John had inspected Lucy and made sure that she had plenty of water and oil, so we got off to a flying start and she didn't overheat for a long way.  When we got to the M1, however, it appeared to be gridlocked for a very long way so we took a diversion, to GPS Flossy's great irritation, going by way of Nottingham and Grantham before we rejoined the M1, and sure enough, the traffic was running freely by the time we got there.

Sadly, as soon as we had a clear road and were able to get a move on, Lucy began overheating again and we had to finish the journey with the heater and fan on full pelt and the windows open so that our lungs didn't fry.

The last 100 miles were through patchy fog, which always terrifies me.  Because John wasn't driving exactly slowly, we were astonished to be overtaken by many cars doing Heaven-knows-what speed as they disappeared into the distance.

Again we got home at 9.00 pm, totally exhausted and stressed, and after a lovely meal Charles had prepared for us, we rolled straight into bed.

Honestly, it's taken me until today to get over it!  There was no chance of my getting to my writing course on Thursday morning since I didn't wake up until 15 minutes after it had started.  Fortunately another Board member has requested that meetings be moved from Wednesdays to Tuesdays, which will suit me a great deal better and prevent me from having to miss too many classes!  Why didn't I think to ask?

John and I have both been too exhausted to do anything except loaf about for the rest of the week and I haven't even done any de-cluttering.

Today we did a Costco shop;  it was incredibly crowded, but didn't seem to take too long to get through the cashier's station.  I didn't spend a lot of money because I was far too tired to spend much time there, even on my scooter. and stuck to my list.  I couldn't even get some of the things I wanted, so we went to Lidl on the way back, but they didn't have beetroot or red cabbage, either.

Charles has just gone off with John to get a DVD or two from Blockbuster so I have to go and make the soup.  Butternut squash and lentil tonight, I think.  We got bogof delicious wholemeal bagels to go with the soup, although poor Charles wil have to make do with his horrible Morrison's GF bread.  Snot fayre!

Charles got the Lidl goose out of the freezer while we were away and apparently we're having that tomorrow!

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