Thursday arrived cold – I mean ice inside the windows cold! Heavens to Murgatroyd, it was freezing bits off just poking my nose out from under the covers. I thought it was supposed to warm up in March? Maybe not, well for certain not if the last few days are anything to go by. There was not gonna be any sense of fashion to what I wear today, nope warm is the word coz its going to be perishing going to school!
That's one thing about having boobs; you get a practical extra layer at no cost! Searching the wardrobe I pulled out anything that felt like it might be warm. The bad news is that the warmest stuff was all ‘Gabywear', now I know what the Doc said on Tuesday – I mean how could I forget, but given the choice I want to be Drew.
I guess I can live with the jumper, the long sleeve T will be hidden anyway which leaves my legs and feet. Hiking socks are good but stupidly my warmest below the waist wear is a long skirt. I am not wearing a skirt to school again! Which leaves either a pair of combats or jeans, neither of which being particularly warm. Combats look scruffy so I guess it's the denim; mind you I can put a pair of thick tights underneath, that'll work.
“You ok fella?” Dad enquired as I shivered over my Weetabix ®.
“Yeah, just a bit cold.”
“It is a tad on the chilly side.” Dad agreed.
“I thought the house was supposed to be warm.”
“The heat is on, but it's showing minus fifteen outside, it'll take a while to get the place warm again.”
“Minus fifteen? I'll have to find my thicker gloves.”
One good thing was that it wasn't exactly frosty, well not ice on the road frosty, the grass and trees are well rimed but the roads and paths are just about clear. I found my thicker gloves; my ski jacket is pretty toasty however I had to resort to a Gaby hat to keep my head warm.
“I hope the heat's on at school.” I mentioned as I joined the girls in Thesing's.
“Is it cold?” Con asked.
“Is it cold? Nope cold doesn't come into it, its flippin' freezing!”
“You can be a drama queen sometimes Drew.” Pia noted.
“Its minus fifteen out there.”
“Well you're dressed for it.” Bridget pointed out.
“Doesn't stop it being cold.”
“You'll warm up on the bike, you want a warm croissant?” Con enquired.
We looked like a bunch of Eskimos riding down to school. Despite all the layers the cold seemed determined to work its way through to the skin and I was thoroughly chilled from the twenty-minute ride.
“Can Fräulein Bond please go to Frau Boxberg's office.” Frau Dürst requested before she called the attendance log.
“What've I done now?” I sighed to Steff. “And why does she keep calling me Fräulein.”
“Looks like one, acts like one.”
“Gee thanks, its nice to have friends.
Steff stuck her tongue out as I pulled my jacket back on.
“Ah Drew, sorry to call you out of class.”
“Its ‘only' English first period.”
“That's what I want to talk to you about. Your friend from England , Bernadit.”
“Yes Bernadette, she will be attending Silverberg from next week but I'm a bit concerned that her German is not very good.”
“She's good at languages.” I offered.
“That maybe true but I'm still concerned. I'm going to have to rely on you to help out translating and let me know if its not working out. Your teachers of course know of this and they will give Fräulein Rose some slack but only so much yes.”
“We haven't spoken for a while, how are you getting on?”
“Okay I guess, I'm still not great at German grammar.”
“You and half of Germany ! Your teachers are pleased with your progress so don't stress about it. My spies tell me you are fitting into our social life very well, in fact it seems that you are at the top of most invitation lists.”
I blushed, she knows about Gaby of course, how could she not, but she's as bad as Woody with her spy network.
“And your sport, that is going well too?”
“Um okay I suppose.”
“More than okay I think, your Mutter mentioned you are on the national team.”
Mum, you are a blabbermouth!
“Er yeah, I'm not that good really though.”
“We can agree to differ on that statement I think. Well you had best get back to class before Herr Viessner misses you, bear in mind what we talked about regarding Fräulein Rose.”
“Okay, off with you, oh and you might want to pull your shirt out of your tights.”
“Yes miss.” I sighed.
Once outside of her office I readjusted my clothing, how embarrassing, I must've done it when I went to the loo before going into her office. At least she told me.
“Ah Drew, you'll need this.” Claudia mentioned as I passed her desk.
“Um thanks.” I took the proffered tardy marker; at least it would keep me out of trouble with Herr Viessner.
“What was the summons about?”
“‘Bout Bernie coming to school.”
“Fräulein Bond, do you wish to share with the rest of the class?”
“Er no Sir.”
There were a few snickers from my classmates.
“In that case please do me the honour of not talking whilst I am.”
Steff mouthed a sorry, but how comes its always me he picks on?
“Got everything lass?”
“Here, don't let your mother know.” Jack Rose slipped his daughter several Euro notes.
“Thanks Dad.” Bernie gave her Dad a hug.
“Now just you behave for the Bond's.”
“Time to go Bern .” Cheryl Rose called from the hallway, “taxi's here.”
“Take care now lass, lets have a kiss.”
Father and daughter did the awkward farewell before joining the third member of the family.
“Come on, the metres ticking, see you Monday Jack.” Cheryl pecked her husband on the cheek then dragged her bags out to the waiting car.
It might be cheap but getting from Warsop to Germany by coach isn't exactly straightforward. They had to get to Mansfield to pick up the National Express to London then there was a couple of hours to kill at Victoria before mounting the Köln bound coach. With all the bags it just wasn't practical to use the bus to Mansfield and Jack couldn't take the time off to do the job either, hence the taxi.
The London bound bus was a few minutes late arriving and the driver grumbled at all their bags but by one fifteen they were on their way. One problem with living slightly off the beaten track is that stuff like public transport can be a bit round the houses. The coach headed first to Ashfield before turning towards Nottingham . The countryside tour didn't end there; they stopped at Loughborough as well before finally joining the motorway south.
By the time they'd visited Milton Keynes , Golders Green and crossed central London it was close to six.
“Lets get a cuppa.”
“Hmm yeah, sounds good.” Bernie agreed as she followed her Mum from the arrivals to departures buildings.
The pair made their way through the busy concourse to the snack bar and ended up with pasty and beans too.
“So when's the German coach leave?” Bern enquired.
“Lets see, we have to check in at seven thirty , we leave at eight thirty .”
“Geez, that's hours away.”
“Only an hour or so.”
“We coulda caught a later coach down.”
“Not from Mansfield and what if there'd been a hold-up?”
“You want another coffee?”
The waiting wasn't so bad. Cheryl read her book and Bern listened to the Ipod she got before Christmas, before all this kicked off. At least the waiting area was reasonably warm unlike Mansfield bus station earlier! The check in opened and they joined the queue of hopeful travellers.
“That wasn't so bad.” Cheryl mentioned as they commandeered a couple of seats to wait the half hour before departure.
“You'd think they might speak a bit French and German on the counter, that woman in front didn't understand anything that bloke said.”
“I suppose it would be a good idea.” Her Mum agreed.
The coach wasn't full when it left Victoria and headed off. By the time they were clear of London and heading down the motorway to the coast, most people had settled in and spread themselves out. The long night was just beginning.
“I think Bernie was leaving for London about now.” I told my fellow sandwich eaters.
“How long does it take?” Anna enquired.
“Dad's collecting them at nine in the morning in Köln.”
“That's like twenty hours!” Nena observed.
“I don't think they're driving all that time and they change to CET.”
“Even so, it's a long time on a bus.” Brid noted.
“I suppose.” I agreed.
“Are we gonna do something to welcome her on Saturday?” Nena asked.
“Not the Spa!” sugar I forgot the cover up this morning with all the cold!
“ Bonn ?” Steff offered.
“We've not been to Koblenz for a bit.” Con put in.
“She might not want to go anywhere.” I pointed out.
“Guess we could ask her.” Anna suggested.
Knowing Bern she'll jump at a shopping trip.
“We'll have to get her a travel pass and stuff.”
“Mine needs renewing – we can kill two birds.” Pia chirped.
Maddy Bell 04.01.09 © 2009
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