Setting out, from Leicester to Dover
21.07.2011 - 21.07.2011 12 °C
Well, well, well... it seems like only moments ago that I was emerging from Heathrow airport, bleary eyed, with battered and bandaged boyfriend in tow. A years’ worth of travelling almost culminating in our untimely demise in the back of a Delhi taxi in the terminal 3 airport tunnel, couldn’t have been a worse end to our marvellous time. Fortunately we survived to live another day and for me, another adventure. I know my feet have barely been back on British ground for 2 months, but I am just adding the last few items to my suitcase..YES SUITCASE…no baby elephant backpacks this time around! And hopefully, by sometime this lifetime, we will be on our way to a bed and breakfast situated near the Dover/Calais ferry crossing. But as it stands, mum is at grandmas and dad is having the wheels put back on the car or something. I suppose I shouldn’t complain, wheels being rather indispensible when embarking upon a road trip.
The packing? A considerable amount easier than packing for the world tour and this time around I could afford space for such ridiculous luxuries as clarisonic facebrushes, electric toothbrushes, Beautyflash Balm, Vivienne Westwood attire and the like. In fact I have gone all out and taken TWO cosmetic bags, ooo la la, makes a change to the one bottle of head and shoulders and a bar of soap I had become accustomed to the last year. No Mosquito repellent, rabies jabs and malaria tablets required this time round thank goodness.
I would try and explain the carefully thought out plan, as there are set dates for the various parts of the trip, and accommodation is already pre-decided and paid for, (that’s the best bit!) but as I have been so busy in the last two weeks I haven’t noted down the details. As for the gist, well, I think it goes a bit like this: Ferry crossing to Calais, drive to Germany and then ermmm…look, I’m just going to have to get back to you on this one. I know Austria and Switzerland and possibly Italy figure in there somewhere.
I’m going to have to bore you with the details of porridge and syrup for breakfast with my darling Stephen before dropping him off at Saint Margret’s bus station at 10am and also trying figure out facebook adverts to use my Wix coupon for my NEW ILLUSTRATION WEBSITE !WOOHOO! www.caraltracy.com. So if you are reading this please check it out and don’t forget to ‘LIKE’ it on the bottom bar and if you really ‘LOVE’ it then become my friend on my CARLA TRACY ILLUSTRATION page on facebook…it has been a long time in coming.
Well that’s about it, for now….see you somewhere near Dover
Eventually, in true Tracy style, we left when we should have probably been arriving; at around 4pm. The journey seemed unusually long for a four hour trip and as I gazed out at the sodden motorway, all I could see was the indistinct red glow of car taillights vanishing into the misty spray. Summer where are you?! I thought to myself as the rain continued to thunder down on us; good job I packed for winter conditions, because Thursday the 21st of July could have been any day from mid-October to January. And then, as if out of a nightmare, rain blasting, wind blowing, wearing a tragic pair of tan sandals ‘A Small World After All’ came on the radio…the original version. Why this was playing on radio 1, I have no idea, but it only served to intensify to the absurdity of setting off on our ‘Summer Holiday’ in what seemed to be the depth of Winter, and soon we all gave way to madness and began singing along.
There was a brief rest stop where Krispy Cremes came to the rescue; stuff the healthy eating I thought, I need to fatten up to heighten my chance of survival in a possible blizzard. I watched what seemed to be a van of Polish people along with the entire contents of their house going about their business at the edge of the petrol station, while trying to avoid glooping raspberry filling down my front and then after parking next to a car full of gypsies we headed on our way. Where were we? Were we still in England?! I was convinced we had fallen off the planet.
Progress was slow, and we didn’t reach civilisation until around 21.00 and then there was the rather important matter of finding food before everywhere closed. We stopped by a grotty looking pub that pointed us in the direction of …where fortunately we were able to just jump inside a Pizza Express before closing time. The Nicoise Salad went down a treat after a day of cheese, quavers and Krispy Cremes and I must say the level of service in …Pizza Express was really good!
We were glad to arrive at around 23.00 and fortunately we hadn’t been locked out as the hotel ran a local pub downstairs. It wasn’t the most salubrious of places, but it smelt strongly of tangerine air freshener in the corridor which was better than beer, good enough to put our heads down for the night….if there were beds to our heads on that was! Of course they had forgotten about Glenn and I and so begun the fiasco of getting the half cut manager to assemble the ‘Z’ beds.
I gave the two matresses a test with half a bum cheek and deciding that one was probably less comfortable than sleeping on a bed of nails, I promptly dived onto the other which then abruptly collapsed and sent me into hysterics. Then, to top it all off, the bottom end also gave way and what I was left with was a seesaw, bed, hybrid…thing. This managed provide a source of amusement for at least half an hour, until we found that Glenn’s bed magically caused the window to rattle with the slightest of movements. It remains a mystery to this day….