Holidays, More car trouble and is it Swine “flu?

Swine 'Flu?

Holidays, More car trouble and is it Swine 'flu?

On Holiday again

I have been a way again, but because of my recent car troubles. My dearly beloved and I decided to fly on our latest venture.

We have really good friends who have retired and live in Knysna. They have been nagging to visit for some time now. We also have a friend who lives in JeffriesBay (about 160km north of Knysna) and dearly beloved has some ex- family who live in PE. We decided after our abortive Mozambique trip, to set matters right by taking on an Eastern Cape adventure. We decided to fly to George (about 90km south of Knysna), hire a car (if it breaks down, who cares - its hired), stay in Knysna, drive to JeffriesBay, stay there a day or so and head on home by flying Via PE.

Anyhow, I got onto the trusty Internet, made the bookings, found I could leverage some credit card miles on the flights, and for a mere bagatelle could fly for less than one tank of diesel (about 750km). Are you still doing the math? Anyhow the numbers looked good.

Packing and leaving

Now I should reveal a secret, despite my healthy lifestyle, every time I get on an airplane, 2 days later I have a cold! So true to form, but I digress!

We packed our bags. For me this is simple, but for dearly beloved, the weight restrictions imposed by airlines are a real burden and making packing somewhat of an arcane art form, which includes sneaking odd articles of clothing into my suitcase!

We now decide to drive to the airport an park at the long term car park. Now our beloved airport has been upgraded, revamped and extended to accommodate the 2010 soccer world cup. So every trip to the airport is an adventure. I used to know the airport well but it seems we have become strangers and become estranged recently.

The Airport

However, even allowing a good margin of time, we had a couple of challenges. Firstly we heard on the radio that our regular route was closed due to building and blasting. All our major highways are being maintained and upgraded and the Gautrain (a Metrorail – mostly subway system) is in advanced stages of construction. but still, blasting takes place from time to time, so we had to choose an alternative route to the airport. On arrival we could not find the long term parking and found ourselves trapped in the regular parking. We now needed to exit this parking and leave the airport to find the long term parking (which I had never used before). Lucky me I have a cell and can phone my son asking for directions to long term parking as he uses it regularly.

We now take bus trip to the departure terminal.

The Flight

Lovely flight, on time, comfortable. We arrive in George, on schedule, and pick up the hire car. Lucky us, an upgrade is available for no extra charge. We get a little Kia Picanto instead of the tiny VW Chico.

The holiday and the 'flu

At any rate we arrive and the holiday begins but my throat is a little sore but just a tickle, overnight. But the next day the tickle becomes a full blown sore throat and my nose starts to stream. By day 3 I am blocked up and coughing much to the annoyance of dearly beloved.

Swine 'flu?

As part of our holiday, we arise early every to take long walk to the local café (about 2km) to collect a daily newspaper. Our friends ask us what we think of the Swine ‘flu issue. He also casually mentions that a couple in Mossel Bay (about 150km away) have been quarantined with suspected swine ‘flu. OMG I think as I cough, cough, cough. Did they come in from the same airport (George) on the same day? Did we pass at the airport (there was an old geezer coughing badly at the baggage claim). So you can imagine my thoughts. At any rate it turns out they were clear! Thank God! So at least I don’t have Swine ‘flu.

We complete our Knysna leg and pack up to go to to Jeffrey’s Bay. We leave behind our thanks and a possible couple of people with colds (they were sniffing on the day we left). Dearly beloved seems immune (so far).

Car problem

We arrive in Jeffries and our friend asks us how we managed to scrape the car!

I look at the left rear fender and see large scrape, covered in travel dirt!. Now I never saw this when took delivery of the car, but it was dark and the damage is not clearly visible in bad light. I am now in a state of panic! It is 5 days later and the first time we have used the car since driving from George airport to Knysna. It was safely parked all the while. At any rate I phone the rental help line and they direct me to a yellow damage card in the glove box. This is a general schematic of a car has a couple of black lines drawn near the wheel where the damage is. The helpline as “Don’t worry the damage is not yours, it has been recorded” Phew what a relief cough, cough (getting worse).

My cold just gets worse and finally two days later we head for PE and the Airport.

Going Home

We fly home and once again our luck holds, we get upgrade from a budget flight to a luxury flight, which includes drinks and dinner ( a welcome bonus) as it is an evening flight.

On arrival our baggage comes out pretty much number one and two on the carousel. We set out for the bus to take us to the long term parking and it arrives as we do, so no waiting. Great! Considering I am feeling pretty lousy Cough, cough.

More car trouble

We arrive at the parking, find the car. No mean feat, I can tell you in that large parking lot. We pay the fee after putting the credit card in the wrong way (no clear instructions. Oh well, what can I say – blame the cough).

As we leave, a burly security guard taps on the window and says I have flat tires!

On inspection, I see I have one flat tire and three nearly flat tires (they are low profile tires so it is difficult to tell in the dark.

We phone our car companies help line, who offer to tow the car. They have never had such a call before (flat tires). I am now pretty peeved at the help line so I phone the AA who promptly come out and pump up the offending tires and we finally get home many hours later.

I should point out that sitting in a broken down car in the dark, in a quiet spot is not a safe thing to do in SA. Carjackers and robbers are constantly on the prowl and we saw some dodgy characters and cars around while we locked ourselves in the vehicle awaiting the arrival of the AA.

My car has run flat indicators which should tell me when the tires are flat. But this did not work. So even when I fly, my car lets me down! Bloody computerized car!

Retirement certainly looks attractive right now cough, cough (I am still coughing).


Another great hubmob by sixtyorso

Comments 18 comments

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C. C. Riter 7 years ago

Great story telling SOS. So sorry ya had the problems, but all in all it sounded nice. I was lost the whole time as I don't know where those places are. LOL I must google them

frogdropping profile image

frogdropping 7 years ago

SOS - enjoyed this. Still ... I'd rather have a dodgy car journey that get in a flying tin-can :)

Rated up.

AEvans profile image

AEvans 7 years ago from SomeWhere Out There

I hope you feel better and I could imagine what you are thinking, the video was hilarious and everyone worries so much, just wash the hands often and you will be fine. Seems to me you caught a very bad cold. :)

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 7 years ago from South Africa Author

CC Thanks for dropping by and commenting. Geography lesson free! The Eastern Cape also known as the Garden Route is one of the most beautiful parts of South Africa.

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 7 years ago from South Africa Author

AE thanks I am improving a bit, but still Coughing. But I agree Bad cold. I looked up the cold vs 'flu symptoms and it's a cold for sure. But a persistent one none-the-less. I also enjoyed the video and it makes for great background music while reading the hub too!

Thanks for stopping by. Much appreciated!

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 7 years ago from South Africa Author

Hi Froggy statistically 'planes are much safer than cars! In SA the road death figure over a year is one of the highest in the world. Over the Easter weekend over 750 people were killed!

Thanks for stopping by and commenting. Much appreciated

The Old Firm profile image

The Old Firm 7 years ago from Waikato/Bay Of Plenty, New Zealand

Sounds like at the end of the day, a great holiday. So some jerk let down your tyres. Look at all the upgrades!

Cheers SOS,


profile image

2C's 7 years ago

I'm glad I returned, I forgot to wqtch the viral video. LOL funny indeed. One can sing about anything I reckon. I even got the bird from Dom. haha

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 7 years ago from South Africa Author

Hi Old firm nice to see you about!. Yes I intended to show the karmic wheel effect. None-the-less being stranded in an isolated area at night in Johannesburg is not an experience to be recommended. Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 7 years ago from South Africa Author

2C's glad you enjoyed the video. Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

marisuewrites profile image

marisuewrites 7 years ago from USA

Hi Sixtyorso...your travels are a delight to me...but I am sorry for the cold.  So much for all the publicity about filtered air on planes.  Just a hint:  Some people find it helpful to take echinacea a few days before traveling, other's get help with calcium, magnesium and zinc (1 pill, combo) and a cocktail of 1000+ vitamin C for about 1 week before traveling. 

I hate a can surely spoil the best of times.  Something is getting you on the flights for sure....Still, you have the most interesting traveling time...and I'm very glad you were not carjacked.

Reminds me of getting on an elevator in  a car garage in Las husband was a cop at the time, and stuck his hand in his jacket pocket as if he were holding a gun, because 3 unsavory characters on the prowl jumped on the elevator with us  at the last minute.  We were outnumbered and outgunned, considering Lynn was totally unarmed, even though he did his best to act fully stocked.

His "cop" look kept them in doubt and our quick jump off the elevator and nearly mad dash to the lighted lobby helped save our butts.  =)) 

another delight, Sixtyorso...I want to go on your next trips....I'll bring the vitamin C...

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 7 years ago from South Africa Author

Marisue You would be most welcome with or sans vitamin C. Perhaps that story of yours has the makings of a hub. Vactaion tales from the badge - Las Vegas. Kinda catchy don't you think? Once again thanks for your wonderful support. I also did a kind of bittersweet party hub too that you might want to check out.

marisuewrites profile image

marisuewrites 7 years ago from USA

Great idea for another tales from the badge hub...THANK YOU. I'll go check out your party hub..=)) why is it that traveling rarely ever goes as dreamt? Part of the pleasure of the unknown I suppose...

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 7 years ago from South Africa Author

Marisue I think holidays are a break in routine and getting outside your comfort zone and the change , whatevever it is makes the event?

marisuewrites profile image

marisuewrites 7 years ago from USA

Exactly, many of our vacations have been flubs we love to talk time we took a short cut to Brandon Missouri, a scant 5 hour trip turned into 10....we crossed a mountain, in the dead of night with curves galore...scary!! another hub I think!!!!

"A Cop's Shortcuts"...

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 7 years ago from South Africa Author

Go for it girl! I can't wait as I love your stories.

Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 7 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City

Great hub, how to travel, or not to travel as the case may be.

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 7 years ago from South Africa Author

Yes Rod that just about sums it up. Life's a journey too!

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