Monday, July 11, 2016

A Visit from My American Family and Friends

The day after I arrived home from my visit to Michigan, I got up and stripped my bed, washed the bed linens and hung them on the line. I then made the bed using the second set of sheets that were clean and folded in the hot press.

I had my usual late morning with coffee with Sarah and then wandered around town waiting to hear that they were in Ireland. Their flight was a bit late, but they were expecting to get to Wexford by bus around 2 pm. I met them at the bus station here in town and escorted them the short distance to my place. They considered taking a nap, but decided they'd adjust quicker if they tried to sleep at the regular night time here. We went out to lunch at Simon's where we met Sarah. We each had some variation of soup and sandwich and then walked around a bit. We then came home and played some Farkle and ate cookies with tea for dinner.

We all had a good nights' sleep and then met John and Sarah and our driver, Greg, out front at 8 am. On the first day of the tour we went to Enniscorthy to the 1798 museum and Vinegar Hill and then stopped at Curracloe Beach and the Wildfowl Sanctuary before heading to the Wren's Nest for fish and chips and a pint. What a fabulous day. I know I took photos while we were touring, but am having trouble finding them.

Atop Vinegar Hill

On the second day of our tour we went to Johnstown Castle, Tintern Abbey and the Hook Lighthouse. Again a lovely day, except for the clutch trouble Greg had with the vehicle, but he seemed to know just how to take care of it. We had a delicious lunch at Templars Inn before heading back to Wexford.

Tintern Abbey

Walled Gardens

Hook Lighthouse

Johnstown Castle

I hate to admit it but much of the time the girls were here is a blur. We had a trip planned to London, but they went off without me when my ankle proved too much. I've been referred to a orthopaedic specialist at Beacon Hospital in Dublin and my local GP didn't think I should plan to be away. As it turns my appointment is not until 11 August, but I think it was good to give my ankle a rest.

The girls had a blast in London, which included, but was not limited to, Sue getting locked in the loo at the place where they were staying; a hop on hop off bus tour of the city; and a cruise on the Thames. They then took a train to Pembroke, Wales, where they spent a night before returning to Ireland via a ferry. They all seemed to think the ferry ride was the high spot of their trip.

For the rest of their stay we pretty much walked around Wexford (except for the day John and Sarah took Judy and Sue to Enniscorthy to see the sights and have lunch) having our main meal at lunch time at various restaurants in town followed by cookies and tea for dinner. What could be better.

I hope the girls had as good a time as I did while they were here. Looking forward to Anne coming back in a couple of years to see me and for us to explore a bit of Europe together.....  

Monday, July 4, 2016

Visit to The States

I'm way behind, but better late than never, I guess!

I flew to Detroit via Chicago on 26 May. I set my alarm for 4 am and caught the 5 am bus to Dublin Airport. It was a clear, crisp morning, so I wore a fleece jacket for the walk to the bus. I stored the fleece in my carryon bag once I was inside and checking in at the Aer Lingus desk.

The flight was uneventful, but 8 hours long and brutal for all that. We left Dublin at half eleven and arrived 8 hours and 6 time zones later in Chicago around half one. It was jam-packed and hotter than blazes there. The heat I get, but I was slow on the uptake when it came to the crowds. How could I have forgotten about Memorial Day weekend and the scramble to go on holidays.

I took a short flight to Detroit arriving around 9 pm. Adam, Payton, Katie and Zoë were waiting for me with a lovely, glittery "NANA" sign. At first they weren't sure whether or not they'd spotted me. I have a bit more hair than I had when I left. When they heard me laugh, they knew who it was, though. I got lots of hugs and kisses (Payton had tears running down her cheeks). Zoë and I almost had a catastrophe at the down escalator, but we were rescued by a couple I'd met at O'Hare.

We had a lot of conversation on the way to Adam's house where Dana and Morgan met us. After a bit of a visit, Zoë and I settled down in her loft bed and her Dad read a couple of chapters of Junie B Jones to us. He read with changes in his voice that had us howling. We then settled down to sleep.

In the morning, I kept Dana's car after dropping her off at work and drove to Leslie to have my taxes done. I actually got a chunk back, so I was thrilled. I really don't remember specifics of the first few days because I was so tired. I thought I was just adjusting to the time difference and all, but it turns out I have a Vitamin B-12 deficiency. Unusual tiredness is one of the symptoms! I am on a regimen of once a week shots for 5 weeks and then a shot every few months.

I saw lots of my dance family here and there and ran into Angela, the lovely apartment rep, at the Crossing. I got lots and lots of hugs. Had lunch and shopping with my friend, Carol, and spent a bit of an evening with Divya, Manish and Prisha. Mona took me out to dinner, too, where I ran into a former sister in law who I hadn't seen in a while. There were many people I wanted to see, but wasn't able to. I hope to make up for that next visit.

On 1 June, I rented a car from Enterprise and drove up to St. Ignace to visit Mom. Anne, Mary and Kathy were also there. Brother Mike came over to visit, as did Dan's wife, Sue. Had a lovely visit with family and then met my girlfriends from high school at the Village Inn for a brew and a sandwich. Such fun!

 I was sorry to miss Mary, Jane, and Monica, but am hoping they've put 22 October on their calendars when we will be meeting at the Driftwood. I've probably forgotten someone, but it is not intentional. I hope to see my cousin, Judy, in October too.

On Monday, 6 June, I met with some of my former cohorts from SHS at Bob Evans for breakfast.

So good to see everyone; it'd been too long since I'd seen some of you. Everyone appears to be doing well and keeping busy. How did we ever have time to work??

My little girls had recitals and were exceptional! What a whirlwind! Two nights of dress rehearsal which included hair, makeup and costumes. Then the real thing on Friday evening.

Payton is on the far right.


On Saturday morning, my other little dancer had a performance at Western High School. Such a good ballerina and tapper, sweet Zoë!

A wonderful, but chaotic visit! I am planning to return for another visit in mid-October. I will go to the UP for my Mom's 92nd birthday and to see my high school friends, and hope to see my retired friends while I am in Jackson, too. My visit with my kids and grand girls will be more tranquil as there will be a normal schedule in place. Looking forward to it!