But… As I turned off my mobile to stop the flow of texts from my kids (away with their dad at their nan’s with a new phone each – foolish decision!) I tried to get to sleep.
The entire night, I swear, was spent under a slowly filling bath. The drip, drip of water into water above my head was relentless.
Having no sockets by the bed, I had to turn the bedding - such as it was - upside down and sleep with my pillow near the desk, so that my heat pad for my rickety old back could be plugged in at the wall.
At four in the morning I was woken by the cold, the only bedding on offer when I arrived being a flat sheet and a bedspread as stiff as cardboard. I had already retrieved the single blanket from the cupboard, so I threw on a jumper and turned my heat pad on again.
Fortunately, in the light of the new day, I took a photo and found, on enlarging it, that it was a sticker. ???
So after that wonderfully restful night, we headed off to my dad’s grave and some garden centres, pruned, planted and generally sorted him out. We ate lunch at his favourite restaurant whilst having to endure the clanging bells of three rounds of Happy Birthday for various tables nearby. We walked around our old town, once very posh, now the proud owner of a Poundland and a tattoo parlour - never thought I'd see the day! (We decided the only thing they didn't have still was an Ann Summers!) And so with a double duvet and extension cable in hand, we headed back to the hotel for an evening of mediocre TV - I sent Mum back to her own room for Coronation Street. I do have some standards - and settled down to sleep.
Not quite the stay I was hoping for and the following morning we got back on the road in the driving rain and headed for home.
I think once every two years is quite enough; sorry Dad!