Monday 21st November.
Well, here we are, finally on that last day. It is astonishing how quickly it’s come round, yet we’ve packed an amazing amount in to these five weeks. In fact, it’s hard to recall the details. So many wonderful memories crowded together that they tend to run into each other!
The day started well in two respects; the first being that it was a bright day, although a bitter wind outside brought the temperature down to freezing. The second being that the local Classical radio station, which had greeted us yesterday with wedding music for the anniversary of the Queen and Prince Philip, today played the overture to “Yeoman of the Guard” – M’s absolute favourite G&S. Not long after that, they played the overture to “Pirates” – not one of M’s favourites but always nice to hear music from the motherland, especially G&S!
We declined breakfast at the AirBnB as our charming waiter at brunch yesterday had recommended a local establishment called “Zeke’s Place” as the best local breakfast location that would be open on a Monday. So, after leaving our B&B, we drove down the coast past a very rough looking sea to East Gloucester.
We found Zeke’s to be warm, friendly and very busy.
The menu was excellent. The chef, whose name is Michael, came to add to the “Specials” board. The new item was “Bubble and Squeek” – so M’s mind was immediately made up! However, M did point out to Michael that it should be spelt “Squeak” and he laughingly corrected his mistake! She then described her mother’s recipe to him.
When the food arrived, M declared it to be as good as her Mum’s (if a bit more spicy).
R had a more traditional (American) dish of pancakes, bacon and maple syrup and declared that to be excellent too.
Having thanked the staff for an excellent breakfast, we made our way back towards Boston’s Logan Airport via the scenic coast road.
By just after mid-day, we had returned the car to the rental company. R pointed out that the rear indicator light wasn’t working and it seemed that the front discs were warped as the car juddered under light braking. The man checking the car asked how many miles it had done, to which R replied about 27,000. “Oh! We normally scrap these after 25,000 miles because they start to fall apart”, was the comment! Not a good advert for the manufacturer!
We sat in the airport, which was warm and comfortable, with internet, and a café close by, until the Virgin Check-In opened, then checked our bags and went through security.
On the flight out, we had flown on an Airbus 340 but, going back, it was a very new Boeing 787 “Dreamliner”. As ever, it was very comfortable and the service and food were excellent.
Neither of us slept particularly well or for very long – but we arrived on time, the luggage arrived after only a short wait and the taxi driver from Belfry Cars was there to greet us.
And so we arrived home after five spectacular weeks, full of happy memories. When we look back on it all, it feels like a five-week sensational rollercoaster ride with - as R points out - all of the "ups" and none of the "dips". What an utterly amazing, wonderful time we had!