Friday 1st July 2022 – WHATEVER HAPPENED …

… to the Vanilla Queen?

She was the “fascinating lady” whom I met on MY TRIP AROUND THE HIGH ARCTIC IN 2018 and who came to “haunt me, even in my dreams” for a while thereafter.

While I was driving around this afternoon THE SONG FROM WHICH SHE TAKES HER NAME came round on the playlist and that got me thinking that I’ve not had the pleasure of her company for a quite a while.

She certainly blew down my fences, and I wasn’t the same for quite a while – until the following year when it all kicked off again when I had that rather bizarre encounter with Castor. I don’t know what it is about the High Arctic.

While we’re on the subject of being haunted in our dreams … “well, one of us is” – ed … I had another weird encounter today. I was crashed out for an hour or so this morning in a layby and while I was asleep I saw someone walk past me – someone in his 40s with dark thinning hair, a thin face with a prominent pointed nose and a red, pink and white patterned shirt.

It wasn’t as dramatic as seeing Zero a few weeks ago but it was pretty close.

This morning there was tons more stuff on the dictaphone that I’ll have to transcribe later.

And after a shower I went for breakfast that was included in the price. All in all it was excellent value, the hotel, and I’ll stop there again.

As well as that I almost managed to drive away without paying. I’m never sure whether this booking agency makes me pay in advance or not. Sometimes it does and sometimes it doesn’t. I was just on the point of driving off when the receptionist came running after me.

It was raining quite heavily this morning and cool too so it was a pleasure to drive. But I couldn’t keep going for long. I found a lay-by down a lonely road and crashed out for a while when I had my strange encounter.

The rest of the drive was fairly uneventful. Nothing much happened and I even crossed the Rhine without really realising it.

There was however a bad attack of the Jimmy Ruffins as I entered Stuttgart. ‘I’ve passed this way before” I sang to myself. Even the traffic jams, and there were plenty of those between Stuttgart and Pforzheim, looked strangely familiar.

And the diversions too. In fact there were plenty of those all over Germany. Getting in my way wherever I try to travel. But at least the weather improved later on in the day as I went further north.

Right now I’m at a hotel in Pirmasens a couple of hours from Luxembourg. The hotel is like some kind of Gothic horror out of the 1960sbut then again so are the prices. I’ve never stayed in a hotel as cheap as this anywhere in Europe apart from a unit hotel at a French motorway exit.

So tomorrow I have a choice of several directions to take. It all depends how I’m feeling and how is about, I suppose. We shall see.

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