It's been a busy few weeks. Richard joined Tim and me in Birmingham on 18th July, and we then had a hectic round of visiting various friends and family. This involved eating good food, catching up on the past year or two, and seeing how other children grow up just as much as ours do...
We said goodbye to Tim yesterday evening, around 5pm UK time, which left me very teary. I don't like this 'empty nest' thing at all, and it's probably worse when the grown-up children aren't even in the same country.
Anyway, Richard and I had a straightforward drive to Heathrow, an easy return of the car, and a three-hour wait at the airport after we'd checked in. Still, we were able to buy some sandwiches and drinks and browse several shops, and there were plenty of places to sit. If one has to spend significant time at an airport, Heathrow isn't a bad one to choose.
The flight was fairly smooth and uneventful, and I managed to doze most of the time. We were back in Cyprus by 5am local time, when I was relieved to find that it was 'only' 25C and not at all humid. Two of Richard's Egyptian colleagues insisted on meeting us, which was nice, so we were home by 6am. The cats came to greet us, evidently in good health.
We went upstairs and fell asleep almost immediately, waking around 10.30, feeling at least slightly less tired.
All of which was fine. I didn't feel nearly as bad as I usually do after a night-flight.
Unfortunately, our cat-sitter had a horrible experience on Monday. She went out to do a little shopping, and was on her way home when a car whizzed up to her, someone leaned out and grabbed her shopping bag, and then zoomed away and around the corner.
She was in a state of shock, not surprisingly, but a kind Cypriot lady came to help her, and sat her down, and called the police. She had to go to the police station to make a statement, and while she was there someone else came in and - although she doesn't speak Greek very well, it seemed that he was saying that something similar happened to him.
The police brought her back again, and another neighbour looked after her when she got back, until some friends came to take her away for a few hours.
We will be much more careful than we have been with bags, when out walking in future. The police seem to think some kind of gang may be operating: apparently this kind of thing is fairly common in some other European countries, but as far as we know hasn't happened in Cyprus until now. Ten years ago when we were newly arrived, it was very safe - hardly anybody locked their cars, or even their front doors when they went out. Alas, it seems that things are changing.
Tomorrow I hope to post a few photos from our time in the UK, if I can find anything of general interest.