We have never been to Spain's Canary Islands before but tomorrow afternoon, all being well, we will be on our way there from Birmingham Airport. Specifically we are headed for Gran Canaria - to the very south of the island where the sand dunes shown above are located. They are, we believe, a stone's throw from our two bedroom apartment.
I have so far used the third person plural "we" deliberately because I shall be visiting Gran Canaria not only with my lovely wife but also our "children" - Ian being thirty years old and Frances twenty five. At first it was just going to be me and Shirley but Frances said she had a spare week's holiday in September and no plans for how to use it so we asked her if she'd like to come along. Then I suggested we also ask Ian whose life in London - with rent, transport and everything means there's very little left over for such niceties as holidays. Of course he said yes. So having imagined that family holidays were over forever, we now find we have got another one on our hands and we are very much looking forward to it as the first signs of autumn are appearing in Merry Olde England.
When we get back to Birmingham we are planning to stay in Frances's new flat in The Jewellery Quarter. I helped to move her in yesterday, returning to Big Yellow Storage for the belongings we had placed there last Sunday. What a brilliant service Big Yellow Storage provide! Clean, professional and transparent and the little unit we reserved was just the job in the labyrinthine corridors of yellow doored units - it was like being in a modern day version of "Alice in Wonderland".
Now if you'll excuse me. Instead of sitting here tapping away I should be up and about, buying euros, packing suitcases, removing the dead rat from the middle of our lawn, ironing clothes and tidying the garden. I am not sure when or if I will have chance to blog in Gran Canaria so there may be a little gap in this never ending avalanche of words and pictures.
HOUSEMAID'S KNEE UPDATE Thanks for all the cards, gifts and messages of goodwill I have received from bloggers and physicians around the world. I am truly touched but as there have been so many I cannot send out individual messages of gratitude. To Adrian - thanks for the baby osprey - so cute and fluffy but I have had to pass it to the RSPB so that it can be returned to its nest and to Meike thanks for the family sized tub of sauerkraut - very thoughtful. To Bob Brague in Georgia thanks for "Ku Klux Klan - Members Guide" - I shall read it on the beach. The knee is feeling a whole lot better now but I still have a slight involuntary limp and I am nervous about putting weight on it when I go up or down stairs but two weeks in to my physical torment the agony has certainly receded and I hope that before too long I will again be able to plod for miles. I have been missing those long walks and it has been impossible to burn off calories in my usual way so I am feeling rather bloated. Looking forward to plenty of swimming on holiday.