Day One…. What a Corker!!! – Friday 15th June 2007




As with all good ideas, they’re bound to go wrong!  The plan was to 
leave at 8.30 but at 9.15 just as I was getting out of the shower, 
I was beginning to panic.  Don’t think I was festering in my pit; 
oh no… up at 7am but, it was all downhill from there.  Now I know
you purists will be disgusted to read this but, my GPS was playing 
up and I could not get the maps of France and Spain to load so decided,
to hell with it, I’ll buy a map on the way. Loaded up ready to go,
then hit the shower.

Left at 9.40 out of the road turn left, turn right up to Manor House
tube and then left onto Seven Sisters Road.  200yds later and the
luggage decides to slide off.  Quick emergency stop at the side of
the road – unpack/repack and nail it down and we’re off again.

Fantastic weather… lovely sunshine, clear road through the Blackwall
Tunnel and onto the M20 heading for Folkestone and the Chunnel.

About 30 miles from the Chunnel had to switch to reserve tank, (no time
to fuel up given the late start), praying for a petrol station but the
only one I saw was for lorries only… um! Nevermind, made it with time
to spare and luckily they were running 30 minutes behind schedule.  Was
very surprised to find the don’t have a petrol station there but, was 
told can fuel up in Calais just 1 mile from the terminus.  After about
a 20 minute wait it was time to board the train, started her up and 
drove towards the embarkation point…cough, pop, bang, silence… 
whoops! no petrol… dry as a bone, she ain’t going anywhere.  
Shit! I only needed one more mile.  Thank you to the lovely Eurotunnel
staff 

who obviously have this happen

all the time… especially
Graham who brought 5 litres to get me
going, whew


So bibi sunny Britain,


Europe here we come…  







lashing it down as we pulled into Calais.. oh quelle surprise!
It was now 2pm or 3pm in France (I forgot about the time going
forward 1 hour). Found the petrol station and filled her up,


the rain had stopped now so decided it was time to get lost.. yep no
GPS no sense of direction equals L.O.S.T; ended up on a motorway
going in the wrong direction.  Whilst the plan was to go to Orléans,
this road was going to Reims or Paris no no no don’t want that and
then the next thing… the heavens opened… throwing it down,
hailstones the lot!  Ow they hurt.  Eventually managed to get the
GPS half working and got off the Reims/Paris road onto a D road
going west… that’s more like it and the sun came out again; well
briefly.

So where am I you ask… well indeed…. not in Orléans that’s
for sure…

After getting lost a couple more times… drenched twice more and
paying two tolls I have finally arrived in…. Rouen…


aaat

at

at 10pm french time and just blown 1/3rd the accommo budget on the first hotel I saw…

what the hell!



first meal of the trip… yummm



Am I tired?  Yep, exhausted.  

Have I enjoyed it?  Bloody fantastic.. even the sodding hailstones.

Onward and upward, (or downward actually), skip Orléans and onto
Limoges… we live to ride another day; can’t wait.


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