About Me

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Mullavilly, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom
A child of the early 60's. Married with three children, two of which are at Uni. I have been the rector of Mullavilly Parish since 1993. I enjoy travel and animals, and I look after three dogs, four cats, and a snake.

Wednesday, 20 January 2010

up, up and away



Over this past year, I've paid many visits to Belfast City Dump Airport. It started with Elizabeth's open days and interviews at Liverpool and Newcastle, then both Elizabeth and Jonathan going to Burundi and Kenya, then lots of visits via Ryanair to see Elizabeth in Liverpool (today she signed for her apartment  for next year). This afternoon, we took Jonathan to begin his three-flight journey to Port Elizabeth , South Africa. Thankfully, due to my wisdom and discipline in suitcase packing, he avoided any excess charges - he was only allowed 20K for 5 months! After paying the extortionate car park fee at the airport, we watched his British Midland flight to Heathrow pass the window of the Ikea Restaurant as we indulged in Swedish meatballs and then, for comfort, bought a few nice things, including two packets of those delicious Punschrolls.
Although departures like that are sad, the world is certainly a much smaller place than before. SMS, Skype etc mean that we can travel far and yet be never far away.

There are many skills (other than how to pack), that children will never learn until they start to travel and grasp every opportunity. Like Elizabeth, I went to Liverpool when I was 18. I hitch-hiked across Europe when I was 20 (not recommended today). I spent 4 weeks in Jerusalem and 5 weeks roughing it (in beach-houses) in Brazil. Those were good and worthwhile experiences. All our children were camping in France before their first birthday and we've managed to take them all to North America on three occasions. We taught them to be adventurers and thus they go adventuring.

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