The holidays by numbers

I was one lucky expat this holiday and got to go home for a whirlwind trip – six days (three of them travelling) overflowing with family, food and surprises. I could wax lyrical about that home-for-the-holidays feeling, the novelty of winter and the precious time spent with loved ones, but I don’t quite know where to start. So, instead, here’s my numerical recap (SUBTITLED: Travel with kids never did run smooth) …

Distance travelled: 8,650 miles (in 2 planes, 2 trains, 1 tube train, 2 cars and 2 taxis)

Family members visited: 24, including DH’s 95-year-old Grannie

Visas forgotten (due to being in old passport): 1, causing immigration officials to shake their heads and tell us we couldn’t travel (in the end, they took pity on me)

Visas reunited with: 1, thanks to two special people: C who searched our house to find it; and DH who discovered that overnight FedEx delivery doesn’t apply when there’s bad weather in the UK

Skipped heartbeats: 3, when the concierge at the hotel the visa had been delivered to by a fellow pilot mistakenly presented me with a box of jewellery instead of an envelope

Waterlogged UK, but wonderful nevertheless

Waterlogged UK, but wonderful nevertheless

Passports lost: 4 (Yes, seriously. I think I was cursed)

Passports found after 45-min panic: 4. They’d dropped into a black hole in my suitcase

Children lost: 1, before the pantomime at Birmingham’s Hippodrome, triggering a full-scale search for Son 2 via walkie-talkies. (I know, I know, we’d only been out of Dubai for five minutes)

Children found: 1, in a deserted area of the theatre, clutching the booster seat they give kids like it was a life raft

Christmas dinners eaten: 3

Floods (or water ponds as they’re called in Dubai): Too many to count

Fish rescued: 2, found in a puddle, as floodwater receded from my parents’ garden; they were returned to the fishpond they’d escaped from

Minutes stayed up past midnight on NYE: 7

Speed of gusting wind as plane sat motionless on taxiway: 40mph

Memories made: Priceless

HAPPY NEW YEAR! (and thank you for reading Circles in the Sand in 2013) x


About Circles in the Sand

Sun worshiper, journalist, mother, pilot's wife and distracted housewife living in the land of glitz and sand
This entry was posted in Children, Dubai, Expat, Family, Parenting, Travel and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to The holidays by numbers

  1. What drama! It sounds like you had a great break, though. 🙂

  2. I love it, sounds absolutely hectic but great.
    Glad you got home, translate, I wish I got home for three Christmas dinner and a panto.

    • Wishing you a great 2014 – and keep the wonderful blog posts coming. They really make me realise that Dubai is such a soft option! I hope all is going well – and I hope you can nip home soon, too. xx

  3. Audrey says:

    Love it! I stayed here in Doha the entire time this year and have to say that it was a pleasure NOT having to deal with all the drama of travel… I did miss home though. Happy New Year and thanks for this great story! 😉

  4. MsCaroline says:

    Happy 2014!!! Our only passport-related incident was Son#1 getting to the airport for his flight to Seoul and discovering he’d forgotten his. THAT was quite the go-round…and his dad was none too pleased about having to buy him a last minute replacement ticket. 48 hours’ delay and Christmas a day late – but all’s well that ends well, I suppose….; )

    • Good to hear from you!!!! I keep checking your blog to see if there’s an update! Poor Son#1 must have had such a shock at the airport – and I can well imagine the last-min replacement ticket was a shock too. Happy New Year! xx

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