In fact, it’s taking much longer than I expected to finish this story, but tere is a spell of great weather and we’d far rather be out riding the Harley-Davidson than sitting in front of a computer. However, with part 4, we reach a real highlight of our visit by Maria and Cecilie, the Danish branch of our family. I have also been beaten to this part of the tale by Cecilie, who has already posted a lot of great pictures of her English trip over on Facebook.
Anyway, the first three parts of this adventure have taken us through most of the weekend, and as we have reached Easter Sunday, it was to be their last day with us before returning home. But before we could think of loading up the car and delivering them home, there were two important things to complete. The first was to take Cecilie out for a ride aboard the Harley. In Part 3, I posted a picture of Cecilie sitting on the bike on our drive, but she really wanted to get out on the road. I was only too pleased to show off oblige.
We set out Northwards from Nottingham, around the Hucknall Bypass and out on the dual carriageway towards Annesley. Bearing left at the north end of the dual carriageway, we rode out towards Junction 27 of the M1 and across towards Selston. Following this road down through Moorgreen and Watnall, we then came through Nuthall and via the A610 roundabout, along Lowmoor Road back towards home.
For me, it wasn’t the most exciting ride of all time and didn’t really last very long, but Cecilie had developed the “biker grin” by the time we got back. She was a really good pillion, keeping very good balance and she seemed to relax as the ride went on, even letting go of her grip on my waist for a while. She responded well to the taps that we exchanged to check that everything was OK.
Although the conversation between Cecilie and her mum was in Danish, I feel sure that Cecilie said something like, “I want one” when we got back.
After the ride, we hopped into the car to collect Sue’s mum, Mercy, so that she would be able to say goodbye to the ladies. Some of this was done over lunch, but we had agreed to pop into Sue’s sister, Lesley’s, as it was only a few yards off our route to Stansted airport, so we spent some enjoyable time there, with yet more home-made cake before leaving Mercy behind with Lesley and family and heading off southwards on the A1.
Airport farewells are never easy, but were eased a little with some more shopping, although this didn’t actually go much beyond looking on this occasion.
Once Maria and Cecilie had finally passed out of sight though the security check and off into the departure lounge, Sue and I headed back to the short-stay car-park and made our way back northwards.
However, we had arranged to stay overnight at a Travelodge near Peterborough. This was not the best maintained Travelodge room that we had ever seen, but we were both so tired that we collapsed into bed and stayed there for the next 13 hours. The following morning, Sue decided to “have words” about the poor state of the bathroom, in particular, and as a result, we were refunded the money that we had paid. Even as a freebie, though, the experience was not great.
We had vaguely planned to visit a heritage railway on the Monday, but I managed to leave my jacket, with my wallet, money and Heritage Rail pass at home. We therefore headed for home, but set the Satnav to find the shortest route, rather than the quickest one. This took us across country, leaving the A1 behind and going past Rutland Water and through Oakham and Melton.
We reached Melton Mobray cattle market sometime mid morning and Sue persuaded me to decided to stop and take a look. I have to confess that I wasn’t all that keen, but I am glad we did. We found lots of really good CDs for 50 p each and Sue picked up a pendant set in silver, along with a book or two. We spent a very enjoyable couple of hours there before tucking into ur sandwiches and finishing the journey back to Nottingham.
It was a great way to end a packed, but extremely enjoyable Easter weekend.
It had been two years since we last saw Maria and Cecilie when we went over to Denmark. I really hope we don’t leave it as long before we get to spend some more time together.