We somewhat reluctantly packed up and left our cosy room at Hotel-Du-Vin……


We somewhat reluctantly packed up and left our cosy room at Hotel-Du-Vin. My dad came to meet us with our passports (freshly stamped with Iranian visas-phew!) and we had a greasy fry up in a cafe near the dock. We’d just found out that we’d missed the only ferries across the channel for the day from Poole, and eager to get going, we decided to ride around the coast to Portsmouth, stopping for the night in Lymington; where my dad’s staying in his caravan. A nice ride following the coastline through Bournemouth (where, when stopping for a final taste of England; fish and chips with the obligatory rain and sand, we found £10 in the sand- another good monetary omen!)
We arrived into Lymington and following dad’s instructions, arrived at Amberwood, a beautiful home belonging to Sheila, a friend of Dad’s partner Di; in the extensive garden of which, Dad’d squeezed his little caravan (he’s been a little nomadic of late). Dad laid on, what can only be described as a dad-style feast: a couple of pizzas and some uncooked corn on the cob – (“What? You’re supposed to cook it?”, a wonderful attempt at a salad and a fine selection of booze. Nevertheless, cooking the corn in the Sheila’s kitchen gave me the opportunity to find out all sorts of fascinating things about her; what an incredible woman. We talked about global politics and her Argentine tango classes in a village up the road. She point-blank refused to strike a tango style pose, however, when I later asked for her portrait in front of the house! Sheila kindly offered us her spare room, which we accepted thankfully, grateful of not having to put the tent up and a hot shower.


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