Having confirmed the housesits from Spain to France, a hop to the UK and back to Spain before the trip to Italy, the next task is to join the dots and confirm the routes. Sarah started on Monday and has made good headway. The Nomador site is quite useful as they have what they call Nomador Stopovers. Many of the Hosts on Nomador that have used housesitters offer a one night stopover for travellers. This is mainly confined to France, but is very useful between trips.
We also booked the return ferry from Cherbourg to Poole in June. Direct Ferries needed the car details when booking so we took a guess based on a car we have been looking at on a website. When we actually get our car we will have to remember to change the details!
And for that we will need funds so I am researching money transfer rates. This whole business has changed over the years with rates and fees very competitive, as well as the time to transfer being much quicker. This is because the process has changed considerably. In the old days, once the exchange rate was confirmed the transfer would move like a cheque from bank to bank. Now the money is deposited with an agent in the country of origin who advise an agent in the country of the recipient and they transfer the funds from their local account. It pays to look around. Depending on how much you exchange you could save a lot of money.
Between our housesits in Civray and Chateau Le Mur we had a week to spare. Choices included staying on at Civray, getting to the Chateau early or perhaps just taking our time and have a few stop overs. The other option of securing a housesit didn’t come to mind as we thought finding somewhere on route for the exact dates would be too much to hope for. But Sarah had a look on Trusted Housesitter, found somewhere, applied and we were offered the housesit … all within 2 days. So now we are heading to Saint Jean de Cole for the last week in April to look after 3 dogs, 3 cats and 3 laying hens!
Friday was one of those off days. We received some news mid-week that slightly unsettled us (I’ll write about this over the next week or so) and so our heads had been in the clouds for a couple of days. So on Friday Sarah was due to go to the dentist for a check-up and I had to be at home to received more empty boxes for our final shipping to the UK. I had received an SMS reminder with the time slot, 10 to 11am, from Seven Seas, also a copy from Sarah and when she left for work that morning a verbal reminder. Yes dear! Sarah’s appointment at the dentist was important for the obvious reason, but also because she had already cancelled a previous appointment, a bit late and so the receptionist was a bit snotty about it making Sarah feel quite bad.
I called Sarah later Friday morning to catch up. After a chat there was a brief silence and she confessed to having forgotten to go to the dentist … just completely slipped her mind and now she is under threat of the wrath of the snotty receptionist. It was at this point I also had to make a confession. I got immersed with the computer Friday morning so decided to go for my walk later than usual. In fact, much later. It was a beautiful day by the time I stepped out and had been walking for about 15 minutes when my mobile rang. Fortunately, I was on a side street and heard the ring and decided to answer it. The time was 10:10 am and the voice on the phone advised he was here with the boxes. F**k … I had completely forgotten the boxes were being delivered. I told him that I was 10 minutes away and he whinged that I would hold him up. After telling him that was too f**cking bad, I hung up and ran back home. When I say ran, what I really mean is that I ran in my mind. The truth was that the sun was blistering hot, so I jogged, walked and struggled for breathe in several phases. During this painful trek back to the apartment I had visions of a very upset van driver getting ready to punch my lights out. As I turned the corner into Gadigal Avenue there was no sign of the van and in a way I breathed a sigh of relief that I may yet live to see another day. But how would I explain the non-delivery of the boxes to Sarah? As I reached the door to the lobby I realised the driver had left the flat-pack boxes neatly slotted behind the buzzer column of the front door. Moments later I received a text from the driver with a picture of said boxes as evidence. Hopefully he won’t be the guy collecting the boxes and more hopefully I won’t forget he is coming. On Monday I have the dentist and I have written it in big bold letters on a post-it note and stuck it on my laptop cover!
A good-bye lunch today at Bondi WholeFoods in Surry Hills with Brittni who is flying off to London this week to pave the way for her future life. The menu is mainly salads and sandwiches, but Sarah and I found a cool green salad … add a poached egg and a glass of kombucha to make a nice light and healthy lunch.
20 days to go … next week is a big week, don’t miss it!
Until next time … 🌏