tger greenhaddock: Exploding cats, Christmas, and the journey from hell

Monday, January 02, 2006

Exploding cats, Christmas, and the journey from hell

The Haddock family are safely back in Marburg after spending Christmas with my family in Ilfracombe, Devon in England. It was a memorable trip and a lovely Christmas.

We dropped the cats off at the Cat Hotel prior to driving to Calais to catch the ferry to England. Whilst in transit to the Cat Hotel our tomcat Mickey had explosive diarrhoea. The car reeked, and the cat wasn’t happy in his travel box. With windows down we arrived at the cat Hotel feeling a bit sick to say the least. Worse was to come, and for me it happened in slow motion. The tomcat was let out of his box. He was soaking wet with shit……and then he shook himself……It went everywhere. The Haddock family had to return home to change clothes. We stank to high heaven. Fortunately the rest of the journey was without mishap.

Christmas was really nice. I enjoyed being back in my home town seeing my family. We eat a lot, drank a bit and had a great time. The Juniorette loved being with her English cousins and has learned a new subset of slang. The highlights of her pressies from Santa were her digital camera and her microscope. The microscope is the dogs – you can hook it up to a computer. We haven’t done so yet, but will in a few days. Expect some cellular pictures soon.

The day before we drove back we had a walk on Woolacombe beach to watch the surfers. It was snowing. This is very unusual for North Devon. I suppose it should have given us a hint as to what to expect on the trip back to the Fatherland. We encountered snow on the journey back to Dover. This wasn’t too bad for us but the rest of the English drivers seemed to have a few problems at times. The ferry crossing was with Gale Force winds, so the crossing was a bit lumpy, but again no problem. What was a problem was France. It was sheet ice as the snail munching swine were not salting/gritting the roads. We were stuck in a very slow moving and slippy traffic jam for hours. It was raining and it was freezing. As we crossed the border into Belgium the roads suddenly became clear, for a while. Then we encountered snow and ice. It seemed all of northern Europe had experienced a big dump of snow.

We had our moments getting home, especially over the hills of the Sauerland, but after 12 hours we finally made it back to Marburg from Calais. Total journey time from Ilfracombe was over 20 hours. But the real hero of our little adventure was the Juniorette who did not moan or complain once on our journey. She really showed signs of the Dunkirk spirit – Perhaps next time we should sail from there.

9 Comments:

Blogger christina said...

My goodness, what an adventure! Glad you all got back safely and that the unfortunate cat episode wasn't any worse. Just imagine if you'd had to go straight to the ferry after that!

Happy New Year to all of you!

January 02, 2006 2:43 PM  
Blogger Dixie said...

Yikes! Spastic kitty shitter! Poor thing!

Glad y'all had a safe trip and a fun time. Happy New Year to you and your family!

January 02, 2006 11:02 PM  
Blogger Léons Life said...

I always go home to Dorset via Calais and love the break on the boat. It's a good way to break up the journey. Especially afterwards
getting to the far end of Dorest on those country roads is hairy

We love to sit in the bar and play "guess the nationality" and then have a fry up in the restaurant.

January 03, 2006 9:20 AM  
Blogger Rocky said...

Sorry to hear about the crappy start to your journey. Wow, that's impressive that juniorette hung in there for 20 hours. Very impressive!

January 03, 2006 6:04 PM  
Blogger Ms Mac said...

Pleased you are home! Wishing you and all the Haddocks a very happy 2006!

January 03, 2006 6:28 PM  
Blogger The Complimenting Commenter said...

Wow. Sounds like an adventure from beginning to end. It's great that you got to see family. Hopefully the rest of the year will be easier. Thanks for an entertaining post.

January 03, 2006 8:49 PM  
Blogger Haddock said...

Christina - Lucky we could go home to change!

Dixie - Happy New Year!

Leons Life - People watching on the ferry is fun. It's surprisingly easy to guess the nationality.

Rocky - The Juniorette was amazing. She has since offered to buy Mrs H and I a present for getting her home safely!

Ms Mac - Happy New Year to the residents of Chateaux Mac

Complimenting Commenter - Happy New Year to you!

January 04, 2006 8:51 AM  
Blogger jen said...

so this is what you meant by cats are just as messy as kids. Yuck.

see what i mean about the best kid ever?

January 13, 2006 7:41 AM  
Blogger J said...

Sounds like a great time. Sorry, but I almost died laughing after reading the exploding cat part.

January 21, 2006 8:09 AM  

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