Yesterday I hired a car and headed for Wootton Bassett, Wilts. This is where I used to live and where I still have my flat and a number of friends and relatives. Despite not having driven for 4 years, I got there safely and smoothly. Wootton Bassett is a small village outside of Swindon, but has become famous in the last year or two: just down the road in RAF Lyneham, where soldiers killed in action are flown back to the UK. The funeral cars have to pass through Wootton Bassett to get to the mortuary in Swindon and the residents of the village are now famous for standing by the road to honour the dead each time.
During my 24 hours there, I managed to catch up with quite a few folk. Steve [left] is an old friend from College, here with his wife Julie. I had a lovely lunch with them. Colin [top right on the left] and Denise and Alan [to the right] are friends from when I worked in Swindon with National Power. And the Prictor family [bottom right] are my cousins and their kids who let me stay the night and laid on a delicious Mexican meal (before hammering me at various computer games!).
Before I left, I was able to inspect my flat (which has been rented out for 15+ years). I also wanted to remove the 2-3 boxes I'd stored in the attic. But on climbing the ladder, I found more like 12 boxes there, and heavy with books and ornaments too! So for each box, it was a case of dragging it down the ladder, climbing down the stairs, then balancing the box on top of a 2m wall which drops down to the road (there used to be concrete steps down to the road, but these have disappeared since I last visited!?) Then, I had to jump down into the road, fetch the overhanging box back, cross the road and pop it in the car. Then, back over the road, climb up the 2m wall, climb the stairs, climb the ladder and start again with box number two! I was exhausted by the end!
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