Travel day. Onwards to France. We have a Dover to Calais ferry booked for midday and are as ready as we will ever be. The rain has settled somewhat and off so we set.
First issue… TomTom tells us that we are not 10 miles away… we are 21 miles away. Much swearing. Chris has our arrival finely timed and this puts an unwelcome twist to it. Especially as we are not really sure of where to go and what level of border check there will be.
It all end up going smoothly though. TomTom gets us right to the Dover seaboard, and the signs are well marked. The Dover cliffs are truly white and spectacular. The lady in the checking in process greets Chris by name as he drives up and there are no border
checks. Not one. No one even asked us where we were from, or how long we wanted to stay. Or for that matter where we are going.
The crossing is fine too. Chris deems it a little rough, but copes well. P&O is much better set up than the Stena line. Getting us on the ferry is a nice piece of logistic management and it’s comfortable on board with a well serviced restaurant.
We’re there quickly and chanting “stay on the right, stay on the right” we’re soon off the ferry and into French traffic….along with a few hundred huge lorries intent on getting somewhere very, very fast. Trouble is, that we have no plan on where to go. Should we go to Calais, Dunkirk, or straight to Bruges? All our planning has gone on getting here, and not getting killed in traffic coming off the ferry.
In the end we settle between Calais and Dunkirk near the sea and stop for good cheese and bread. The stress of getting here in one piece had earned us a quiet afternoon, and we do just that.
Oh the cheese here. Even in a supermarket, it’s spectacular. Whenever I am here, I could happily live on cheese and bread. The French are very spoilt for choice with some 500 local artisan cheeses to chose from. St Agur at perfect temperature, a good baguette, a walk and a French novel. Sounds like a plan, if a short term one, to me.