Letter from Felixstowe: Clive’s Big Surprise

1 AA hug

Last Saturday morning, Clive thought we were having coffee with friends D&J and F&S – though he told them we had to be back home by noon, because he had a Skype call scheduled with his son Jason in Australia.

Hee hee. Because when F&S walked into the café, they brought with them – kindly picked up a few minutes earlier at the train station – son Jason from Australia.

Clive could not have been more surprised (and I couldn’t have been more relieved). The secret plan had been hatched several months ago, when we were in Australia. Jason took me aside one evening to say he had a possible business trip to London coming up and would we be in Felixstowe over those dates? Yes, yes, yes I replied, and what a fabulous gift it would be for his father.

Despite a few near slip-ups along the way, we somehow managed to keep all the schedules and arrangements secret – all thanks to Jason and his wife and family Down Under and our dear friends here in the UK, who offered assistance each step of the way, including the train pick-up, café meeting idea and special get-together the following day. I couldn’t have done it without them.

A few minutes after the surprise

A few minutes after the surprise

The week has flown by, as we were able to spend a few days in London while Jason had his meetings, seeing him in the evening for dinner or the theatre.

Oxford St, London

Oxford St, London

Back in Felixstowe today, fuelled up by a full English breakfast, we walked along a riverside path and the King’s Fleet, a tranquil waterway taking its name from a fleet of ships assembled by Edward III ready to sail to France in the 14th century.

At Felixstowe Ferry & Deben River

At Felixstowe Ferry & Deben River

It’s hard to put into words what a special and wonderful time it has been as I’ve shared Clive’s pleasure at having this time with his son. As Clive said, he was completely blown away and this is the best surprise he has ever had.

My only regret is that on today’s walk, I didn’t zip up my backpack all the way, my jacket fell out somewhere, and I didn’t realise it was gone until we stopped for a few minutes – and Jason offered to go back and see if he could spot it. He found it after backtracking about a mile up and down a few fields and footpaths – a true kindness and one which I deeply appreciate.

Deep in conversation

Deep in conversation

Good-byes are always hard and I know tomorrow afternoon will be difficult for Clive as Jason begins the journey back to Australia. The good news is we’ll see him and his wife and children in the not too distant future at my son’s wedding in the U.S.

Until then, our hearts are grateful for this unexpected and brilliant surprise. Isn’t it great when these things all work out? Phew! That definitely deserves a toast.

Champagne toast to father & son

Champagne toast to father & son

Cheers and thanks for reading. Next week’s letter will be from Felixstowe.

2 Responses

  1. Must have been a great week for all three of you. I’m sure you all enjoyed each and every minute of the visit.

  2. […] the excitement of last week’s surprise, it’s been a peaceful week by the […]

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