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D'an'Di’s Travel Diary

Wednesday, 09 Jul 2008

Location: London (& home), UK

Map"We Will Rock You" is an ABSOLUTE HOOT!!! If you love to spend the night with a big grin on your face, then this show will do it for you. Great live band, big sound, the set, all the stage performers, everything about it is fab. Except the story, that's a bit corny...really it's just there to string a whole load of Queen songs together. Its been running unbroken at the Dominion Theatre since early 2002, and is the longest-running musical in the theatre's history. The audience was packed and we all had a really good sing-song. Fun. And great to be in London's world-famous West End, too, when all the theatres are disgorging crowds onto the streets at 10.30 pm.
The next day, Wednesday 2 July, was our last full day in the UK. After several days of perfect summer weather it got a bit drizzly, nothing to stop anyone heading outdoors. Had a nice lunch on the footpath outside Cafe Rouge near Covent Garden, nice place.
The coffee was good too. Mentioned only because its an undeniable fact that the British hospitality industry CAN'T MAKE A DECENT CUP OF COFFEE. There will be no arguement about this.
That night we met Terry and Mo at a restaurant on the South Bank. I've completely forgotten the restaurant's name. We had a table next to the full length windows. What a view - the Thames only metres away with St Paul's just a short way east on the opposite side. We have certainly fallen in love with London. It's a fantastic city and would take weeks to explore fully. Every time you turn another corner there's something else to take your breath away, and another famous place name full of associations from a life reading books, watching movies and TV shows, and listening to music set in London.
We had a great evening with Terry and Mo. Two of life's genuine folks. There's no getting away from it, we've been munching our way through a gigantic shit sandwich for the last couple of months and some days we've really had to dig deep to discover the positives. But, our stay in the UK was enriched by this couple's warmth and generosity to us and we look forward to picking up the thread on our return.
So we caught Qantas flight QF 30 from Heathrow to Melbourne via Hong Kong. So now we can say we've been to Hong Kong - for an hour. We've been thinking, it might be worthwhile next time breaking our flight with a stopover for the night. We'd get to have a meal in town and might arrive at the end of the journey a bit less brain dead.
Qantas were very generous to us. We'll contact them and thank them. Dave's ticket was upgraded to Premium Economy by our travel insurers (so he could travel with his leg elevated), but Di's remained Economy. That would have been a really ordinary experience for both of us, and not very practical in the light of Dave's need for assistance with nearly everything. A short conversation with the right person at check-in (it needs to be someone with some authority), a quick phone call by said person to Qantas and - 2 upgrades, to Business! Fantastic! Good on you blokes it was lovely. There's no way in the world we could have afforded the several thousand pounds extra cost after our recent experiences.
So now we're in Mt Gambier. We arrived from Melbourne via REX Airlines on Saturday morning. We could have kissed the tarmac. Dave's parents and 2 of our 4 offspring (Ben lives in Queensland) were there with boyfriends and dogs to give us a really lovely welcome home. It was seriously freezing though. We called in to see our lovely daughter Tegan at her workplace. Later that day we had a houseful of family and we wouldn't have wanted anything else, right now. Beautiful.
After an hour at home, we attended a pre-arranged appointment at the Mt Gambier hospital with a local Orthopedic surgeon, who will take on Dave's recovery to full mobility and health. That could be up to a year. We were SO pleased when he told us he thought the best place for Dave the next 2 weeks is at home with his leg elevated. We were prepared for the possibility of Dave being admitted to hospital number 4...
We'll upload a few more miscellaneous pictures, mainly from our phone cameras once we've worked out how to do it. But, apart from that, it's likely we'll take a break from this blog for a while. Its unfortunate for all of you who've been reading it that we weren't loading pictures of sun-kissed Spanish villages and bikes being joyously ridden along perfect twisty roads. But you have to play with the hand you've been dealt, and this time it was a hand without a lot of aces...but we're already planning our return. There'll be more London, a touch of Wales, a whole load of Europe and a LOT LESS churches next time. We knew that the churches would still be there by the time Dave managed to hobble his way over to one, you see. Hopefully, people have enjoyed what we have been able to share anyway.