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USA 2018 (4) A day with Nicole, and then moving on. Thursday and Friday 15th/16th February. Fewer photo opps, but no less enjoyable.  Well, the Thursday anyway.

Nicole first took me to the New Hampshire coast.  The state’s coastline is only 19 miles long, but it has some historic connections.  We started at Hampton Beach, P1290104001and drove northwards P1290108001P1290111001to Portsmouth, where we had coffee (not nearly as good as Geoff’s!) in a Dunkin’ Donut, before moving on to Durham to pick up their older daughter, Claire, who is in her first year at the University of New Hampshire, reading maths and really enjoying the chance to be with others who love the subject.

Back to Portsmouth, where we had a delicious lunch at a seafood place there.P1290123 copie001 I had lobster roll, and clam chowder, which I would never have know to choose from the extensive menu without my relatives’ help.  Lots of natter, a wander around the port, P1290118001P1290124001P1290125001P1290128001


Um, a merganser?

back to Durham to deposit Claire,


A historic submarine on display


Rivers were freezing


Hall of residence – called ‘dorm’ there.

and back to Bedford.

I know. Bedford, Manchester (a former cotton town), Lincoln, Portsmouth (a port), Durham, all within not much more than an hour or so of each other! And all inside (New) Hampshire!

I didn’t stay up too long, as I was to have another very early start and stretched day on the Friday.

Geoff drove me to Manchester Airport to catch a 6 a.m. plane to Newark, there to change for Denver, Colorado, where I was to catch a flight after a four-hour wait to Jackson Hole, Wyoming, two time zones further westwards across the States from NH.


I think this was at Denver, but perhaps it was at Newark.  Anyway, delighted as I was to see this, I was glad not to be flying in it! (Though in other circumstances…)

The first two flights went fine, but there was an hour’s delay before the third took off. The reason? Just a broken seat.  But as the flight was 100% full, it had to be repaired before take-off.  As a result, and there was also of a slight muddle – no-one’s fault – over where the taxi meeting me was to take me to. So instead of arriving with an hour or so to spare before meeting all my companions for the next 6 days, I was technically 30 minutes late. The briefing over dinner had started – though I missed little I was told, and the meal hadn’t actually begun.

Once at the hotel, the Lexington, where I was to sleep, I was able to examine the cold-weather gear the company – Natural Habitat – was lending me for the week, including these absolutely excellent boots!P1290142001

Only 21 hours  between rising and getting to bed this time.