Monday, 11 August 2008

Chocks away!

Yesterday was the first day of our holiday! Three weeks of no work; at least not the sort of work that makes up the regular weekly routine! The plan is a few days with Ian's friend Roger who lives in the Yonne and then to head down to the land for a mixture of work and socialising (and hopefully some cycling). Blogging is not a problem here in the Yonne as Roger has laptops, computers and network connections in every room in the house. The problem is more navigating your way around the system that he has customised to protect his system from all know invaders!

The holiday started with a drive through Sussex and Kent and a visit to a little cafe in the White Cliffs of Dover literally on the cliffs with a great view over the Channel. We went there once before about three years ago and weren't sure whether we would be able to find it again, but our memories did not fail us this time and we found it at the first attempt! Unlike our last visit however, it was pretty windy up on the cliff top and we had to hold on to the toast that came with our all day breakfast to prevent it from blowing away. I also had the added problem of my hair blowing around my face, usually coinciding with my attempt to take a mouthful of food; thus I ended the meal with a layer of tomato ketchup and fried egg on my hair! Never the less, it was a nice start to the holiday as I think the view has got to be one of the best in the South and beats the Eurotunnel cafes hands down!

After lunch we set of for Eurotunnel. The was my first time and I must say it beats the ferry any day. The whole thing was quick, smooth and easy (and they let us on a crossing 40 minutes before the one that we had booked on). We arrived in France at about 6.00pm and started the 5 hour drive in the old white van. I drove the first few hours and then Ian took over south of Reims for the last bit. As it got dark the light made the cut fields look spectacular and numerous insects committed suicide on the windscreen. However, the most exiting thing that happened occurred when we got off the motorway and on to the windy roads through the woods and fields. By this time it was totally dark and by the side of the road we caught sight of a large animal. We initially thought it was a deer but then realised it was wild boar! We were quite exited as I had never seen one before and were gleefully discussing the dangers to white van of hitting a boar head on when Ian screeched the brakes. Slowly moving away from the side of the road was mummy boar and 4 baby boars! Later we saw a deer by the side of the road, seemingly unbothered by the cars!

We arrived at midnight and slept well!

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