The great thing about being a Blue Badge guide is all the fascinating people from all walks of life and from all over the world who one meets.
A recent Cruise Ship excursion from Dover to Heathrow via Canterbury included people from the USA, Canada, New Zealand, Australia and Bermuda, ranging from a retired Rolls Royce executive, a family returning 20 years after emigrating, and a gracefully ageing Hollywood ‘significant person’, to former missionaries in Nigeria. They were en route home after a three week cruise and it was so enjoyable to chat to them all about their trip, what they had seen and what they were going home to.
The best moment of all was walking them through the 9am-quiet streets of Canterbury to the almost deserted Cathedral Precincts. Without exception they were all bowled over with not a hint of a jaded ‘we have just been on a 3-week cruise and seen it all’ reaction. I like to think that they had such faith in their guide and driver whisking them on to the airport in plenty of time for their long haul flights that they were able to relax and enjoy their last few hours in Europe.
Thankfully the M25 was on best behaviour, our wonderful driver, one of the Grahams from Scotland & Bates, knew exactly what order to do the 4 separate Terminal drop offs in, and I, after some frantic reconciling of paperwork from the slightly confusing lists with which I had been presented at Dover, was able to identify and offload the right people and copious amounts of luggage at each terminal while giving a little potted history of the airport and its terminals as we navigated the complex system of ringroads getting everyone to their various points of departure in good time.
Today, 4th July Independence Day, it was a privilege to spend time with some visitors who had chosen to spend this significant date far from home in the land they had declared independence from back in 1776. They enjoyed experiencing a little bit of (the best bit of…) England in the South East and I enjoyed sharing a bit of their special day.