Passport photos over the last twenty years. The bottom one was taken this morning and I wish I’d seen my turned down mouth before it was all over, but I didn’t get the chance. I look like a criminal in today’s photo, I reckon. I still wear glasses but I had to remove them for the photo.
There’s not a huge difference over the years, I feel, although the hair is whiter and the face a little fatter. Considering I was nearly 20Kg lighter in 2008 and nearly 30Kg in 1998, it doesn’t show too badly.
I said to the woman, “I’m renewing my passport today at 70, and my aim is to renew again at the end of this one when I’ll be 80.” But neither Dad nor Mum made it. Hmmm.
I had to renew anyway, but I’ve just about made the decision to do the UK trip next month. Yow, four weeks to get my act together. It’s quite simple really, but I’m very nervous. I haven’t actually made any bookings yet and although I have a plan up to getting to London, I don’t have anything after that, just ideas. I think I’ll have to have reservations to get home again because immigration guys don’t like you arriving in a country with no outward ticket.
My basic plan is Perth Singapore on Qantas FF, a couple of days in Singapore, then a ticket which goes via Bangkok to Dubai, with a short stop, then on to Paris, arriving around 7am.
A few nights in Paris, then a second attempt to take the Chunnel train to London (my first attempt in 2008 was foiled when there was a fire in the tunnel).
A week in London, (or more if I can afford it), then to Norwich to see my former next door neighbours (yes, next door here, up to March this year when they went back).
A few days there, then across England in a rented car to Bristol to stay with my former work mate from the early 1970s. He went back to the UK in about 1971 after a family tragedy and we’ve met up again through Facebook. Amazing, 46 years. I never thought I’d see him again although I never forgot him. He’s just moved to a new apartment and has a spare bedroom. Yay.
After that, Croft Castle in Herefordshire. I’ll have to take as much family history as I can find. Our direct ancestor, Dr Jonathan Croft, came out to the Sydney colony in 1826, I think, and the rest is history as they say.
After that, no plans. Back to London for probably my last ever visit. Maybe come home via Florence? Then back to Kuala Lumpur and some warmth! I really do like Asian cities more, I think. Then back here mid to late October.
Do I have the stamina? I tire much more easily these days. Time will tell. And time to get moving.
Given I’ve had my Resmed Autoset S8 CPAP machine for nine years now, I think I’ll make the jump to the new model above, designed for travelling. It weighs only 370g compared to nearly 3Kg and doesn’t need a separate humidifier. Pretty clever, and also pretty expensive at $2,300! Yes, Resmed know how to charge what they reckon they can get away with. Considering their major customers are elderly people like me, usually on a pension … the word extortionate comes to mind.