I know I only sent one a few days ago. But life in the donkey lane has been fast… ish recently. We’re all coming back to the UK on the 18th for a week. We’ve done a deal with a TV production company and they are using our story for a program in a six part series called ‘Survivors’ on ITV in the summer. They will be filming us all and then getting actors to jump into water tanks and stuff and if they can afford it they will even stick a Land Rover in there as well, seriously. I tried to sell them the ‘original’ one still full of genuine salt water…to make it more authentic like…they were having none of it. They had talked of flying us back to Sri Lanka and filming us there, they mentioned coming out here and doing our interviews in the dessert. They considered us all going to Malta, as there is a good underwater tank there but no… they settled on …wait for it… bloody Manchester! ‘Dad is that another country’ ‘No Claudia… its in the north of England’ ‘England, but I though we were going to go somewhere else’ ‘Yes…’
We where given the dates and… well I started to think, we can’t get planning permission here for a month or two, due to Iraq and the road to Bahariya being closed … it is a bit one horse towny here at the moment (there are actually two horses here we have now discovered) and so I asked the girl booking the flights ‘ Any chance you could drop us off in Croatia on the way back… to Egypt…like?’ ‘Um… I can’t see why not.’ ‘OK, forget the return to Alexandra, make it one way from Cairo to Manchester and on the way back make it London to Split in Croatia if that’s OK’ ‘You sure’ ‘Um… yes’.
So, were coming back for a week in a weeks time. I’m driving the jeep we bought that I was going to drive to Egypt to Croatia now over Easter and will pick up the others on the 31st of March from Split airport.
Another reason for the change is… we have decided to sell our beach house at Snettisham. It’s a shame, but we will never be comfortable on the beach there again. It has flooded twice in the last fifty years and is due for another soaking now. One major sea-bashing is enough for me at the moment. Croatia is booming, so the plan is to sell the beach house (it’s a beach house now, its grown up from being a caravan) and put the money into an old house on the island of Vis where our land is and spend the summer doing it up to put back on to the market next spring.
We will live in Vis for the whole summer, going off to Romania and Bosnia for a month or so at some stage for a break and to get the planning permission going over there. We will then drive through Turkey, Syria and Jordan to come back to Egypt for the winter in October and stay until the snow melts in Romania and drive back there for the summer of 2006, returning to the UK for good, a few weeks before term time in August.
Up until Boxing Day last year everything went according to plan, so far this year we’ve been all over the place, but we’ve got our heads around it now and… that’s the plan. If anyone would like to come and visit and stay at anytime we would love to see you. I will be looking to find some cheap accommodation in Croatia and Romania so if anyone wants to come out and visit you can be picked up from the airport and stay in some cheap accommodation nearby.
A lot of people ask me ‘ Do you have a tel number yet?’ Whenever we move around we always have a mobile number you can contact us on shown on the web site at www.somewheredifferent.com ‘contact the team here’. We have also been asked for some photographs.
The first one is us taken on the ‘mountain of the dead’, we saw some real Mummies in a tomb there today. Our town is in the background. We live in a house a few hundred meters from the old fortified town on the hill behind our heads called the Shali. It melted in 1929 when it rained for three days and is now a big open museum full of knackered old Siwan mud houses.
The second pic is our land. We have 40 acres of really nice land next to a lake 20km north of Siwa town and we think it’s great.
Third pic. The house in the middle is for sale… for £1,500. It’s very nice and is right next to the Shali, but it is made of mud… we are also looking at a stone house where the picture is taken from for around the same price that we can do up to look the same but will know it won’t bend if the heavens open up.
Will hopefully be up for a beer on Easter Friday in St Albans or Welwyn before I head off for Croatia for the summer. If anyone’s around that night, let me know. The beer ran out here two days ago and as the off licence is a mere 4 hours away, I will pretty well hanging for a beer by then.