You enter the holiday apartment and idly pick up the comments book. You read entry after entry extolling the beauty of the surrounding countryside, the comforts of the apartment and what a wonderful time was had by all.
So here we were in the holiday cottage we were sharing with Mary and Gerry, my sister-in-law and her husband. The second day the boiler stopped working - we had no hot water for thirty six hours. Eventually the repair man arrived and power-cycled the boiler: miraculously it started working again. He scratched his head, "Maybe a relay's sticking?" On our last day it happened again.
We had been promised WiFi: there was no WiFi. I sat in the lounge with my smartphone watching bits trickle in from an erratic GPRS. If a cow moved in the adjoining field, the datalink collapsed.
The bathroom tap was so stiff that only the adult males in the house could move it (we had four children - Clare's nieces - staying over the weekend).
A previous occupant had managed to smash the shower door leaving shards of glass needles on the floor of the shower as my naked feet soon discovered.
Let me leave aside the fact that we slept next to the boiler, so that when it was working we cooked!
As we left we debated what to write. Into the book went the following words: "Wonderful accommodation and lovely countryside, many nearby sites of interest, we enjoyed it so much." In a separate note left for the landlord we itemised the points above. :-)
Actually we put all these issues behind us during our week there. We relaxed, visited Warwick Castle, Kenilworth Castle and the Black Country Living Museum and all in all had a great time. Some pictures of Clare and myself below.
Plus I got the Google sat-nav to work on my smartphone - brilliant!