0530 hrs – Saturday morning – Up and at it to catch the train to Southampton Airport.
Flight to Glasgow – on time
On to Eurocar Auto rental for our ‘reserved’ vehicle.
Clerk at counter checks with manager – no, we will not rent to you because this is an interim license [because my license was stolen in Paris].
Me: ICBC, the issuer of licenses in British Columbia confirmed it was valid world wide. We will pay for a call to ICBC if you want to verify it. Of course, I carry my original International Driver’s Permit.
Manager: Europcar makes the rules – not ICBC
Me: Yes but we checked beforehand, and, we rented from Europcar in Bournemouth already and they confirmed the license is recognized.
Manager: Well they obviously don’t know the rules.
Yes but I also checked with your office when we were in Stansted and they said it was not an issue.
Answer: Who did you speak with and they were wrong.
Garry gets a bit testy!
I decide further discussion with this cold fish of a manager is pointless.
Try Budget – No
Try three other kiosks – No, No and No.
Panic begins to set in. We begin to plan our flight home to Bournemouth — yikes. tres expensive, lose our accommodation in Skye, cancel trip to Heather’s ancestral homeland…BLAH! The trip is collapsing quickly.
Heather says, “Why don’t you try the last remaining one, Hertz?” Well, I say, it is a waste of time – but I will anyway so that no stone is left unturned.
I walk to the Hertz counter and carefully explain the situation. The woman obviously has experience as several staff come to her with questions during our conversation. Sure not a problem she says!!!
She is actually interested in our plight, yes Paris and Rome are terrible for thefts etc. A HUMAN at the counter, this is a treat for sure.
Get the keys, get in the car and we are off — to SKYE. Past Loch Lomond, across on the ferry.
SKYE IS UTTERLY STUPENDOUS! The house we are staying at is near Staffin on the north of Skye – with cows out our front step and sheep in the back, and the owners [crofters] have two great sheepdogs, one of whom is nursing eight pups. She looks tired.
The friendly owner shows us the bedrooms – aye ye hove an extry one in case ye shood have a fallin oot.