Friday, January 8, 2010

Driving in England!

We got a call from the National Trust last night telling us that our cottage in Wales was inaccessible because it was a drive straight up a hill for 3/4 of a mile on an unserviced road and then further up a hill on an unserviced driveway in the middle of nowhere. So that was never going to happen.
Well we have finally sorted out what we are going to able to do. As much of the northern part of England is locked up in snow we will staying at our current accommodations for another 6 days past what we were supposed to. The last day we are staying in England we have been invited to stay overnight at Allison's future in-laws as the cottage we are at is booked. We have the car until the day we leave on the 16th so we will always be able to get around.
It is a bit disappointing that we will not get to see Wales, the Yorkshire Dales and Scotland, but we do have a whole lifetime ahead of us and there will be plenty to see around here anyway. Changing our plans with the National Trust was very easy and we actually managed a significant refund because of the longer stay in a single place.
This is apparently the coldest winter in 29 years and the worst snow in 20 years. It really shows because the infrastructure for handling snow on the roads here is nowhere near what it is in Canada. Many schools have been closed for several days now and many counties have run out of grits (sand) and have no access to salt and some have even taken to digging up sand from their beaches to make road travel more bearable. I will admit that even after a few days the main roads have not been cleared off here which is a testament to how snow gets handled.
There are also 2 types of drivers here in the snow. Most people get really really slow and seem to have no idea how to drive, but others, typically the very few (compared with Canada) who have SUV's who drive really fast despite the weather conditions. I get stuck somewhere in the middle but usually end up following the really really slow people as I am never in a rush on vacation. It has basically snowed for at least a while every day since we came.
Lunch yesterday was fish and chips with Allison from a great little place with a very ecstatic asian lady serving the food who moved like the wind and was very inspiring. The portion of the chips was massive and that came with 2 pieces of fish. A great meal for an even better price. We really enjoyed it.
Last night we had supper with Allison's in-laws (I am tired of writing future, although typing about it takes more words than actually writing it once!) and it was a great time. They are some of the friendliest people we have met and made us feel very much at home. We enjoyed some wine and a wonderful supper and were even surprised with a turn-up of Stuart who was able to share supper with us.
Plans for today were to go to Norwich, but that remains to be seen as the weather there is terrible and according to the news they cannot get grits on the road for some reason. Thus it remains to be seen what shall happen!


Rosalyn said...

It sounds like your motto for the trip is "Expecting the Unexpected!".
Definitely a memorable trip. Looking forward to the pictures.

Unknown said...

I have just finished reading your blog, I didnt know you were going to blog your time.Sounds like fun. Although I must say that this kind of stuff only happens to you! HAHA. I never imagined that out of all people, a little snow would keep you back...sounds like you are getting soft. Talk to you later, Ill keep checking it out and living vicariously through you.("is that how u spell vicariously?") LAter. Renda.

Unknown said...

P.S. as you did not comply within 24 hrs, your lock was removed...well some of us have to get back to work...

Anonymous said...

Good to see things have worked out for your accomodations. Thanks for keeping 'us' updated on your adventure.