We collected all our passengers for this tour on Sunday morning and our first problem arose before we had left the yard. Our company use mini buses to collect passengers from their door and bring them to meet the coach at the depot, and on this occasion, also at Evesham. Our final feeder vehicle arrived on the yard and I overheard one gentleman asking the feeder driver what he had done with his walking stick. One way or another, the stick had been left at the field gate at the end of the gentleman's drive, so he was now having a mild panic about how he would manage all week without it because it was a shooting stick with a seat on the handles so he could sit when he needed to. The gentleman's home was too far away in the wrong direction for us to be able to wait while a car was sent to retrieve it so it was left down to me and my courier to come up with an alternative for him for the week. But the stick has been retrieved and is currently sat in the office. Fat lot of good!
We left the yard with the sun shining on us and by the time we got to Evesham to collect the remainder of our lovely people, it was starting to rain. From then on, the weather got worse until we arrived at our hotel in torrential rain and gales! Because the weather was so awful today, we stopped at a garden centre en route for lunch just east of Plymouth, then continued on over the Tamar Bridge
into Cornwall and on to our hotel which, for this week, is The Falmouth Hotel. This is a 3* hotel positioned on the beach and looking up to Pendennis Castle high on its peninsula and in the other direction, looking up to the harbour. The hotel is 150 years old this week and there are big celebrations to mark the occasion on Thursday and Friday evenings. The place is looking a little tired and shabby in places which they have plans to refurbish, but it is generally comfortable, the food so far has been good and there is a swimming pool which I've not yet managed to find!
My courier this week, Joan, is one of our company directors so before we came away, I was thinking how I must be on my best behaviour. It didn't last long! Behaving myself isn't something that comes easily to me and I am much better when I'm misbehaving and playing up so it didn't take long for me to just be myself. Joan's claim to fame is that she was the first female coach driver in the UK back in the 50's and one thing she has commented on is how the general perception of female drivers, particularly of large vehicles, hasn't really altered since she was driving 60 years ago. Comments like, "YOU drive that big coach?!", and "you're sooo brave!", but why should it be so surprising to people that women can do the job equally as well, (sometimes better than, in some comparisons!) as a man? Anyway, enough of the 'girl power'!
As always when I'm on holiday, I don't rush out of bed! So we left at 10am for today's visit to the Eden Project.