Stone > Euston > St Pancras > Brussels > Antwerp
I settled Fishy into her temporary home yesterday afternoon. For – I think – the first time, I’ve had to put antifreeze into the central heating on board. It’s normally on 24/7 so is not an issue but being away for a fortnight in what is definitely still winter, it felt necessary.
I headed off to Stone for the 09:30 departure to Stafford. It was a glorious morning, especially knowing that snow is expected later today.
Helpfully every service today departed on time. On both the Stafford-Euston and St. Pancras – Brussels services there was someone sat in my seat when I arrived, but I easily found a free spot so it wasn’t a great problem.
This is (sort of) a working holiday, in that I have brought a work laptop with me and am trying to stay on top of things as best I can. The wifi on the Eurostar was fine, except that it didn’t actually connect me to the internet for more than about 20 minutes of the trip, on the far side of the tunnel. Not helpful as I had a work issue to deal with for most of the afternoon.
Antwerp station is something else. Trains stacked up on four levels. Only ever seen that before at Berlin.
I can see that battery life is going to be one of the challenges on this trip. By the time I reached my hotel in Antwerp, I had 4% on the phone and 2% on the laptop. Straight to my room to plug in – except that my international adapter was not compatible! Reception helpfully pointed me to a local Media Markt, but they didn’t have one. I cobbled together a solution using a mains lead and the laptop adapter, and hung the phone off that.
A treat in the evening was a trip to the stunning Roma Theatre to see Suzanne and Gerry. Always a pleasure to be at one of their shows, but this place was something special. Saved from dereliction 20 years ago by a community group, it is enjoying a new life and it was great to see a sold out show.
Had good chats with both Mark and Suz after the show, which rounded off a pretty good day.