Cashing in our chips

This is it readers, we’ve left the UK. Our visas came through on Tuesday, whilst we were killing time in London. We were sitting in Pizza Express, using up vouchers when the email came through at 2pm. Trouble is, we had some Tesco vouchers to use up too, at Madame Tussauds, but we wanted to collect the visas ASAP and they were only available between 4 and 5. So in an instant our days of treading water were over, and it was All Systems Go. By the time we left the restaurant, flights were booked, guest houses/ hire cars were researched and heads were spinning. We only had time for a whistle-stop trip to Madame Tussauds,  but we mopped up some last bits of business:

Colin gave Julia R one last chance to get together before he left the country:


(Just to clarify, she said no but thanks for the offer.)

We popped in to thank Liz and the gang. In all my 45 years under her rule I haven’t had a single complaint. God bless the Queen:


Evie had a near-death experience. I hate to boast but I literally saved her life (with help from Spiderman):



I told Daniel as gently as possible that no, we could never be together now. He took it pretty badly as you can see. I told him can Skype but he was actually quite moody about it:


And all the while we were telling the kids how proud we’d been of them through this tricky time. Here’s my three Iron Men:


Then we jogged through the Star Wars section and got to the visa place at 4.50. Oh sweet relief! (I went to the toilet again and this time it wasn’t swear-y-prayers). The next day we went back to Worthing, gathered all our bags together and did boring bank stuff, left loyalty card systems, paid for our container to get shipped and (sob) stopped our child benefit. My non-UK friends reading this: in England we pay taxes and get lots of things in return: free healthcare, free schooling AND the government pay us every month to help towards the cost of bringing up children. Unbelievable eh?

Last but not least, I cashed in my latest collection of 20p’s. It’s silly I know, but I have always collected 20p’s in Smartie tubes. I have tried to stop many times over the years but I couldn’t… it was tooooo compelling. No choice now though, my addiction had become pointless.



We flew out the next morning and we’re now in Dubai with family. All vouchers used up, and all chips cashed in.