Today we are off to France. We go stay with a good friend in Sens on Yonne river in the Bourgogne (Burgundy). We are planning to stay for 10 days and get some way down the canal du loing.
Originally we had a crossing booked at midday. This would have given me enough time to get home and get some sleep after finishing work at midnight. In a moment of brilliance, we decided that we could move the crossing to 4am and I could drive home from work, load the car and drive to France overnight arriving in time for breakfast, but we’d have to leave the house and 1:30am to make it in time.
Well I arrived home in time, but not much was packed! Jake was up still, Cherie was getting herself ready, drying her hair and I’d not yet put the bike rack on the car for the journey.
I loaded up as quickly as possible, made some sandwiches for the journey as we?d spent plenty on a picnic for the journey but not prepared it. Cherie finished her hair. Time was cracking on now and I’d loaded but not got the bikes on. Cherie finished her hair. These bike racks go over the boot so you have to be fully loaded to mount them. At this point I opened the box and got the contents out and read the instructions. First line read “Allow 20 minutes to construct this rack”!! I attempted some of it for a few minutes and then threw it down and ran to the car minus bike and rack and off we went. I joked with Cherie “Hope you’ve got the passports”. I was rewarded with a glare.
30 minutes later as we were driving down the motorway, inquisition got the better of Cherie and she pulled out the passport wallet to realise we’d not brought Jake’s with us. We decided that it would be best to return home and get a couple of hours sleep and attempt to catch the 8am crossing – with bikes this time.
The alarm went off at 4:45 and we got ourselves together and made a second attempt at the fabled “Channel Crossing” used by many intrepid travellers before us.
I’d calculated roughly that I’d have enough diesel to get us to the other side and buy some at the more reasonable prices but Lady Luck was having a crack and let us run into the red as we were closing on Dover. We made a detour into the villages to buy fuel, a scarce thing this deep into Kent, and arrived at Dover at 8:00 as the boat sailed.
We were redirected to the reception centre as we had to change our tickets to the 10:00 sailing. They attempted to charge us an extra £40 for the privilege but I pleaded with her an she saw sense.
Off we drove to get our fourth revision ferry and were stopped by Customs. Anyway we made our ferry!
One good thing happened on the ferry (some good things had to happen), we were called by our mortgage adviser who “advised” us we?d been accepted for the mortgage deal we’d been after.
No need to describe the drive to Sens, except to say it’s a long way!
We received warm greetings at Evans Marine and everyone jibed Cherie about the passport fiasco.
We loaded up the boat with all our possessions and to be brief, ate dinner and were in bed by 9 as I felt I needed to catch up after having 2 hours sleep in the last two days.