Saturday, 4 April 2009

Safely Home

We arrived on time in Southampton docks and the disembarkation went smoothly, so smoothly in fact that we were 30 minutes ahead of our expected leaving time. Our big bags had been put out in the corridor the night before so that the stewards could take them down to the Customs shed early in the morning but we still had to struggle down the gangway with all our carry-ons plus the elephants and as you may have expected we got many strange glances as we exited.

It took a while for Hilary and I to locate all our bags and with the help of two trolleys we were soon outside Customs looking for our driver. We discovered that he was having a "comfort break" but it wasn't long before he returned and gave us a hand to wheel our luggage over to the car park where his big Mercedes Estate car was waiting. It was while we were doing this we realised that we were a bag short so muggins here ran back to the terminal to collect it. Would they let me back into the baggage shed? Would they hell as like. So it was back to the Departure Lounge, pleading to be let in but still no and then a P & O lackey offered to go and locate the bag. The only good thing to come out of all this trouble was that several of the cast of the Headliners Group were also going back to drag out more bags and I got the chance to talk to them again. Quite a while later the lackey returned to tell me that he had found the missing bag but the bad news was that he had no authority to bring it out to me nor could he accompany me to go and get it! Security then got involved and a rather rotund, elderly, grey haired lady was allocated to escort me to my bag and then onwards and outwards to the outside world again.

Bag in hand I ran back to the limo for it to be piled in and we set off having been delayed by 45 minutes due to my carelessness. Luckily for us the weather was glorious sunshine and there were few cars on the road and virtually no hold ups along the way so we got back to Chubtor around 1.30pm and all set for a nice cup of tea. Hayley and Liz greeted us and gave us big hugs and then said "You have a message about a missing bag," "Yes we know, " we said, only to be told "No, this is a different bag." A phone call to P & O revealed that yes indeed we had left a second bag behind but for a fee of £30.00 they would ship it to us.

And that really is the end of the story, the bag arrived early on Thursday morning and proved to be the one that contained mainly dirty clothes that we had put out for washing and promptly forgotten about, however it did also contain a few necessary items such as toilet bags and a couple of souvenirs so we were glad that we accepted P & O's offer.

Thanks for all your interest in the blog, my sister Rose has asked for it to be re-written in book format and I might just do that after I have completed the mammoth task of editing 11 hours of tape into a 1 hour DVD. Night all.

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