Sunday, July 26, 2015

Gorgeous Guernsey!

I've had a few busy days - time to catch up!

Thursday we did an all day workshop with an engineering company, which went well; then had dinner with the World Vision folks we'd be working with on Friday.

Friday we led a half-day workshop at World Vision with all the international internal auditor directors. Great group of people who literally cover the world. About 20 people total who direct teams of people in making sure that all the systems and finances are following proper procedures in the hundreds of countries that World Vision serves.

Carol and I then parted; she to spend some tourist time in London, and me to head to Guernsey, which proved to be a bit of an adventure.

Traveled to Heathrow, where I checked one piece of luggage, because what I have weighed too much for the Guernsey flight.

Sat in the "bus center" area of Heathrow for a couple of hours, waiting for a bus to the other airport, Gatwick. Because it was pouring rain on a Friday afternoon, everything was delayed. I kept watching the reader board and listening to the announcements; then one time when I looked at the reader board, my bus was no longer listed. What?!!?

Went to the ticket counter; no, you must go to the info booth.

Went to the info booth; she stamps my ticket and says, just go outside - they'll tell you what's going on.

Went outside. Talked to a bus guy who said, whenever the Gatwick bus comes in, you'll be on it. Hmmm - not very definitive.

About 5 minutes later a bus pulls in for Gatwick. It's 4:30 but he says he's the 3:25 bus I was looking for. Three of us pile on (think Greyhound-size bus).

Two hours later (for what is usually about an hour trip) we are at the North Terminal of Gatwick. "Quicker to take the train to the South Terminal," the bus driver says. It's 45 minutes before my plane leaves. I race through the terminal looking for train signs, find them, follow them, and board the train ("We're flying 35 feet above the ground," says the cheerful "pilot" of the train).

More fast walking to "Arrivals" and then to my airline ticket counter. No one in line; get my boarding pass and fast-walk to security. TONS of people there. It's sort of organized but it seems to take a looonnggg time for my bin of stuff to get through.

More fast walking to the departures lounge. The path leads through all the duty-free shops; just like in Las Vegas where you HAVE to walk through the casino to get anywhere else! Get to the departure lounge; a HUGE area swarming with people because all the planes are delayed. My plane is delayed too.

I took this after the major crowds had gone - and it shows only a small segment of the "departure lounge."

My friend Anne on Guernsey texts that the airport is fogged in and no planes are landing. Am I destined for a night at an airport hotel? But no. Eventually the reader board gives the happy news that our departure gate has opened.

Safe and happy landing in Guernsey, a lovely warmed dinner saved for me, and bed.

Saturday - get ready for lots of pictures :-) We spent the day taking advantage of the lovely sunshine between two rainy days.

First expedition - a trip to Jethou, which is a very small island just off Guernsey. It's a private island, rarely open for visitors but happily I'm here on a day when a few small parties of people can explore it, and Anne & Phil were able to wrangle a spot for me!

Waiting at the dock for our boat, looking back at the main town of St. Peter Port.

With only about 10 of us on board a small boat, we zipped over to the island in about 10 minutes.

On Jethou, looking at Herm island where many day-trippers have gone for a lovely beach day.

Roommates reunited!

Anne's husband Phil, plus Anne and a couple of our fellow explorers.

Looking back at Guernsey.

Our boat is coming back for us. We were on the island about 2 hours; perfect amount of time to leisurely stroll around the whole of it.

We spent just a bit of time walking the streets of St. Peter Port. Flowers everywhere!!

Home for lunch. Simi, the cat, decides that a place has been set for her at the table.

Second expedition. We're off for a swim. Here's Phil, Anne and their son Alex in front of their home.

It's about a 10 minute walk down to the beach. A tea shop has a lovely view.

Yes, it was a bit cold but we all jumped in and swam for awhile. Refreshing!!

Looking back at the sandy beach we swam from. The water is crystal clear - looks very tropical!

Third expedition - the West Coast. Beautiful big sandy beaches, which for some reason I didn't take any pictures of. We just looked a bit and had some tea.

The German gun tower (these islands were occupied by the Germans in WWII) was built on a Martello tower, which was built during the Napoleonic wars.

Home again. Their house is where a rock quarry (big industry for this island for many years) used to be. Not sure you can see it well, but their back "fence" is a huge rock wall.

Final expedition - a walk to a restaurant where I had fish pie (fish of course - we're surrounded by water!) and tomato salad.

Sunday - pouring rain and gusty winds. A good day to just hang about the house and catch up on my blog :-)

1 comment:

  1. What a lovely time! Beautiful scenery! Glad you made it there after your travel adventures/ mishaps!