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Today, Jackie Jackie drove us to Louisa and Errol’s at Mapperley Top, a suburb of Nottingham. When I say today, I mean all day – all eight hours. Rather more than anticipated.
As we travelled along the A35 we imagined the autumn leaves may have all fallen by the time we returned three days ahead.
As we progressed along the M25 we were reminded that we were on the Heathrow flight path, as several planes passed overhead. In another sense the motorway itself was a flight path, being the thoroughfare through which so many people flee from London for the Cotswolds on a Friday
when the first of what were to be several queues began. The speeds shown above the traffic are those that will keep the traffic moving. The huge container vehicle shown on the left, having crossed over chevrons, was about to fill the gap between us and the car in front. The reason for the queues is that most drivers ignore the posted limits and continue until they have to stop. This is termed a standing wave.
Soon we came to a standstill.
This was the first of many. They at least gave us the opportunity to look at the scenery.
Periodically raptors hovered above.
We stopped at Newport Pagnel Welcome Break Services for lunch at Burger King.
Half an hour later we continued the journey which was to take another four hours. This is because we faced 17 miles of road works necessitating a lane closure. We spent more time studying the back of Davis Haulage van than we usually do studying ponies’ rear ends in The New Forest.
It took a long time to reach a Traffic Officer
warning traffic that a small van had broken down.
The further north we travelled the more wind turbines we saw.
Shortly before sunset the clouds darkened over the motorway.
Eventually we turned off at junction 26 and headed for Mapperley, as shown on the map. Then, like rats in a maze, we drove all over the place seeking something we recognised. We sought local guidance. Only then did we learn that there were two Mapperleys, and that our goal was on the other side of Nottingham. Errol phoned and advised us to go straight through the City Centre. We did that and I found familiar ground. It was dark by then.
We enjoyed a splendid evening with the family. Louisa cooked us a wonderful paella with garlic bread and salad. She and I drank Chateau de Grezels cahors, 2013. Jackie’s beverage was Fosters, and Errols, Stella.
To follow was watching Jessica and Imogen performing with Nottingham City Gymnastics Club for Children in Need TV.