48 hour pass…and lots of food.

I took advantage of Ryanair’s cheap flights this week for a quick 48 hour trip home to visit my lovely family.

Now Ryanair are not my most favourite of airlines and it takes gritted teeth and bags of patience to navigate your way through their online booking system ticking boxes here and unticking them there to make sure you don’t incur any extra charges. I miss the days when the price quoted up front was the actual price you ended up paying.

It’s not much better at the airport as in order to keep their costs so low the planes arrive at the 11th hour and you have about 10 minutes from the time the gate is called to get to said gate and board the plane.

Herded cattle is a phrase that springs to mind as once on the plane the already harassed air steward/people (what do you call them nowadays??) try frantically to get you seated so they can get turned around and away again.

All said though, 35 euros for a return flight can’t be beaten and so for that I am happy to put up with the discomfort that comes with it.

When you landΒ  (a loosely termed phrase) as Ryanair obviously teaches its pilots to plant the plane on the runway with all the finesse of an obese hippo, they play a rousing little tune announcing ‘another on-time Ryainar flight’ – woo hoo……

I then amuse myself by watching my fellow passengers leap out of their seats as soon as the seat belt signs go off and scramble for their bags before waiting necks craned, heavy bags in hand, all squeezed up together for the doors to open. It makes me chuckle to watch the franticness and the tut-tutting that ensues by having to wait 5 minutes. I love people πŸ™‚

Anyway, on with my trip. I coincided it with a visit home from the sister of my best friend. She and her husband live in Australia and she was on her annual trip back to Blighty so it seemed a good time to come back and see both my family and hers. I have known her sister for (ahem) 38 years and so in reality they are family too.

We organised a lovely lunch with the three of them and my mum, sister and sister in law. Lots of laughing, catching up and way too much food πŸ™‚ followed and it was such a lovely afternoon. Being back in their company always makes me appreciate what strong and loving women I have in my family. They truly rock.

That evening my friend and I went out for another meal to catch up properly. Afterwards as we walked to the taxi rank through the mecca that is Romford we reminisced about our days on Romford’s patch and concluded that we were well past that sell by date and that the bars sounded a trifle noisy for our liking now!!

The following day I had more time with my parents as we went and met my brother for lunch – more food πŸ™‚ A quick stop back at my brother’s house to see his latest DIY skills and to pick up Archie the dog he then took me back to the airport.

Zipping through the back roads of Essex with Archie perched on my lap watching the world race by we had a chance to have a good chat and by the time we arrived at Stansted we had caught up on each other’s lives again.

Before I knew it I was back in Malaga, ditching the big heavy coat as I walked out into a very spring like evening and being picked up by hubby.

Although it was a quick visit it was lovely to touch base with my family, see them all in the flesh and be able to hug and laugh with them in a way you can’t over the phone.

So, I should thank Ryanair for getting me there and back safely and on time……and all for just 35 euros. πŸ™‚