Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Wednesday, January 20/10 - Back in Nova Scotia

Here we are back home in Nova Scotia after our whirlwind trip full of adventure, new friends and many emotions. I’ll pick up where I left off before we went to Karel and Hilde’s for coffee. William joined us and we had a great talk about the historical society’s work, the memories that are still around 65 years later and how strong the feelings still, how the Saturday events went and how time just flew by.

We had some lovely pastries and very good coffee and great conversation. I learned that the display was thought up and mounted in about three weeks – amazing. I know what it takes to get something of that magnitude up and running and it was terrific. The general thinking is that there were about 200 people there. I wish I had been able to go back and talk to more of them.

Karel says that we will definitely hear more about the plane as soon as weather permits. The thinking is that there was only one Spitfire crash near Y.32 and that was Dad’s. He gave me a present from one of the visitors to the exhibit – an oxygen nozzle from a Spitfire - see above. Frans Van Horenbeek is a collector of WWII memorabilia and this item is from another Spitfire.

We had dinner at a lovely restaurant in Opglabbeek recommended by Karel, back to the Mardaga, early to bed and early to rise.

Thank all the gods one more time for the Garmin GPS. She got us to the Brussels Midi station in good time in spite of the traffic. It took a while to find the Parking sign (around back) and then the very small “Rental Car” sign. Once in the Parkade, we zigged when we should have zagged and ended up having to go out and then back in again. Gave the car back to the Europcar folks and we headed for the train. We were doing just fine for time when we were asked for our passports. I got out our tickets and my passport and then… Bill spent the next 10 or 15 minutes going through his briefcase, my big purse, my suitcase and his until finally, he found it in his suit jacket. By this time, things were a bit tense. Thanks to the lovely young lady at Customs who probably sees panic-stricken old folks fumbling around looking for things so they can get into her country – total patience and kindness!

Then on to the train and off to London’s St. Pancras station where we got a taxi (expensive, I know but worth every penny) to Heathrow Terminal 5 to stay at the Sofitel. It is a new hotel and is very, very nice. We had a lovely dinner in a posh restaurant – there are pix – and then off to our swanky room.

This is my lobster bisque. I love the bowl! Those are Bill's hands working on the curried mussels.

Breakfast came with the room and we had a good one downstairs. Another taxi to Terminal 3 – thank goodness – and then hanging around Heathrow for the flight which was on time and actually arrived half an hour early into Halifax. And then the two hour drive home to pick up Sally the dog who apparently had a great time with the other dogs at the kennel.

I’ve gone back and inserted some of the pictures which I was unable to post because of time. So check out some of the earlier post. The next post will include the media coverage we received.

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