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Unread 15 Aug 16, 09:55 AM  
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pretty71
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Beaching It With The Poole's Travel Day August 2016 LIVE


And we're off 😀

I have to say that unfortunately it was a rather lousy sleep last night...I had two and a half good hours and after that, well it was pants! Far too excited for sleeping. Anyway I got up at 5am and the other 2 were up shortly after.

We went down for breakfast at 5.55am what we did for that 55 minutes I am not really sure lol. I replaced the rooms contents which seem to be strewn all over the place somehow into our cases. This is why there is not a picture of the room because from the minute we walked in there it looked like a bomb site

For breakfast Grace did really well considering she does not like to be rushed in the morning or eat early. She had a sausage and toast, and tried a hash brown but said it tasted like chips, which she doesn't like! Crazy kid! All washed down with an apple juice.

Daddy had 2 sausage, 2 bacon and 2 of toast, drowned in brown sauce, no drink?

I had some Greek style plain yoghurt with a little granola and some berry compote thing...delicious. I then had a small amount of scrambled egg on toast and a little spoon of baked beans. My husband made me a cup of tea, a must in the morning for me but to be honest I did not enjoy it for some reason.

Nanny made a bacon sandwich with tomato and Grandad pretty much had the works and it went down very well with white coffee.

Suitably full we went back through a packed reception to retrieve our bags. I wanted to get over to the Thomas Cook check in for 4 hours before and therefore hopefully before the rush.
Grace however had other ideas,well let's just say she spent a considerable time in the toilet while we all stood around waiting, bless her!

We left the hotel and walked through the car park back to where we parked the car yesterday. I was not at the front of the queue so did not know the fast half of the conversation but it appeared they thought we had finished our holiday and wanted our car back! Once I had explained and they tried to send us back to he hotel to get on their bus at 3 each (I don't think so!) the guy who checked us in realised what was happening and we got on the mini bus.

It was a 2 minute journey and we were in the terminal shortly after 7am. The queue was much better than I expected in zone B and we were soon at the front. There was no discussion about the seat allocation and we had the seats we had booked on line.

We walked the car seat to zone H which is right next to the security line... see good old USA term already and I am not even there yet I am filling this in on the plane to upload later...

When we were at check in I handed over our driving directions as it had our address on it of the villa, she never handed it back to me so I ran back and got it...luckily it was still there and no one minded me going in to get it among the vast sea of people who were now in the queue. We had definitely got there at the right time.

We went through the boarding pass check all machines like the underground no queue there at all and joined the security check line, we whizzed through as they had just opened a new lane. We all got through ok but our iPads had to go through for another check. I think we should have taken them out of the bag but didn't. We were through and I now started to feel I could relax. It was 8am so 2 hours before our date was announced.

We had a toilet stop and then walked round to find Wetherspoons as our tradition is to have a bottle of bubbly when we have reached airside. I went straight to the bar and collected our nice full bottle in an ice bucket with 4 flutes.
We did get Grace a drink her favourite...water 😀The nice thing about Stanstead was we had a view of the runway whilst we celebrated and the airport on the whole is nice and bright and it was not overly busy. Plenty of seats to sit in round and about and nothing was crowded.



When we were sipping our drinks an announcement came over the tannoy for a Mr Nanny Vanny to go to the information counter...now I have to say I know it's not really that nice but it felt like the whole pub stated to laugh, we thought they must have got the name wrong until she repeated it. It happened a bit later too whilst we were shopping and Grandad said that basically the whole row of seats started to laugh ...poor chap what were his parents thinking 😀

We left Wetherspoons suitably refreshed and plonked all our bags with Grandad...I know what were we thinking! We walked all the way back round to duty free at the beginning. We lost Grace and Nanny on the way after getting Grace a Dory story book and Daddy a magazine for the flight. We then went on a fragrance hunt. I had written a few down that I wanted to try, I was thinking White Orchid though by Tom Ford as I love it and ran out earlier in the year. I did try a few and decided I really wanted a new one and decided to wait and see what I could get out there. They did have some really good old favourites and great prices, I managed to resist but Mick did get CK2U a great big bottle for 24!

Anyway we got back to the seats at 9.50am so I had a few minutes to send the last couple of texts and messages and then they called he gate exactly when they said they would at 10.05

We had to find gate 01 and had to get the train over that end. As we approached they called the doors were closing, Grace ran for it and I had that horrible feeling I was going to be left on the platform and she was going to be on the train! I told her not to do it but she thought it was hilarious!

A few minutes later we were off the train and going up the escalator, I have just trained Grace to watch the cracks before getting on now and she is very good at it, the problem was she had her new book under her arm so she could hold my hand and the other hand on the rail. We got right to the top and she dropped the book! Daddy was right on it and managed to kick the book off and avoiding a dominoes effect of people on the escalator!

We walked right up to the gate after a little detour as we followed Grandad who was in the lead and went the wrong way! We went straight through and straight down on to the plane easy peasy! Nanny and Grandad were sitting in row 1 and the rest of us were in row 8. I had booked for all of us to sit in row 8, right by the exit for a great departure. Thomas Cook then decided to break us up about 9 months later which I was NOT happy about so managed to get them to give us the 2 seats right at the front which are a bit roomier as they are 2-3-2 rows 1-6 then it goes to 3-3-3 so a little tighter. It was that or we were all moved back to row 18 which is just too far back. Anyway we were on and we were happy. The doors closed and we had a 10 minute delay as the ground crew "forgot" to load some cargo!









I have put these photos in so you can see the room we had and our seat pockets were stuffed too. We did have seat back ife, the selection was 'OK' nothing fantastic but enough to keep you amused.
I have to say the plane is absolutely fine, more than enough room and we haven't found it any more of a squeeze than anyone else. The staff have been very friendly with both Hi Fly staff and Thomas Cook staff and I have no complaints...the only thing which could be improved on is the cleanliness of the plane but it is not that bad, it is just the rushing in turn around.

They came round with drinks when we were airborne and we shared a coffee, which was really nice 2.60 for the privilege, and dinner came round not long after.

I do not know what the vegetarian option was but the other choices were either sausage and mash or chicken with a BBQ sauce and Mac and cheese. Grace had sausage and daddy and I had chicken. It was not a great choice for daddy as he doesn't like mashed potato or cheese! So Grace ate one sausage and that was all, daddy had the other...they were delicious by the way and then daddy had both chicken pieces and I ate one portion of the Mac and cheese. Not bad I had to say. The box also contained a roll and butter, a chocolate mouse with salted caramel, Grace didn't like her mousse? So daddy had 3 but she did eat her roll and butter. For me the best bit was the cheese and biscuits. Crackers with a piece of cheddar and a piece of Brie ( at the perfect temperature) and a fig and date compote which altogether was absolutely lovely, really really nice. All the meals were the James Martins ones too.



There has been a fair amount of turbulence with the seat belt sign being on and off a fair bit at the beginning of the flight. We seemed to have settled down now 6 hours in... famous last words lol.

We have just had a mini ice cream and we have 3 hours to go. We have dozed a little but may try for some more and then start to prepare ourselves for that immigration hall and our long drive!



We did arrive a little behind schedule, 25 minutes late and were delayed getting on the stand due to thunderstorms in the area. We arrived on stand at 3.40 and were in the immigration hall by 3.50... Do you know much to my delight we were through to the baggage reclaim within 20 minutes I honestly couldn't believe it and I was over the moon it wasn't a horrible good hour wait there. We had to get Daddy's finger prints re done too in that time and the immigration officer was very pleasant 😀

Then the hold up came...the luggage, it was coming through but it did take 20 minutes, never mind. We then sailed through customs ( with our crisps and teabags which we did of course declare, not that they were at all interested)

We had already agreed that we were not using the second belt so we struggled up the escalator on to the monorail, you know you have really arrived when you get on there 😀
On our villa owner recommendation we stopped at Starbucks for the caffeine for the drive which was a bit of a drama, not a great example of customer service when they forget what you ordered and you wait for ages! It's not that difficult to do 3 cappuccinos and an americano surely?

Down to he car hire now, we booked with Virgin so had our go straight to the garage pass, saw the man on the podium who handed us the keys to an enormous Ford Expedition. Daddy and Grandad ordered the biggest car they could find and that is definitely what we got. I will take a picture of it today and put it in today's report later.
No Tetris game for us this time all the luggage fitted perfectly.

Grandad saw me out and I had about 2 feet to get my bearings and we were out in the big bad world.

The drive was uneventful and we managed without stopping and took 3 hours exactly to get down to Rotunda West. We had a quick stop for essentials at Winn Dixie and then drove to the villa. What a massive treat we had when we drove through and then parked up, it is absolutely lovely. I will show the pics later. We were indoors for 8.30, Grace slept most of the journey asleep (she won't thank me for that photo when she is older will she) but she woke up when we got in. We explored had tea and toast, showers and went to sleep for 10am.

Today we are out for breakfast and shopping and we will see what else.
Hope you enjoyed reading and see you later for another live report 😀


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Unread 15 Aug 16, 09:56 AM  
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kirstielou
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Yay! Safe journey!
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Unread 15 Aug 16, 10:28 AM  
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app
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New Photo Added by pretty71 - 15 Aug 16 10:28 AM.
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Unread 15 Aug 16, 11:19 AM  
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mick
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A good travel day glad your pleased with your villa I think it's always a worry, we go to the same one every visit as it just what we want

Joan
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Unread 15 Aug 16, 09:15 PM  
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Floridaagogo
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Can't wait to see pics of your villa
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Unread 16 Aug 16, 10:07 AM  
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Jake71
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A good travel day, and so nice to get there and find your lovely villa.
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Unread 17 Aug 16, 11:01 AM  
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pretty71
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Originally Posted by kirstielou View Post
Yay! Safe journey!

Thanks
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Unread 17 Aug 16, 11:02 AM  
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pretty71
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Originally Posted by mick View Post
A good travel day glad your pleased with your villa I think it's always a worry, we go to the same one every visit as it just what we want

Joan
You are right Joan it is always such a worry but we certainly didn't need to, we are over the moon 😀
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