First Week in Europe

Monday spent driving to Canterbury after acquiring a MOT for Jenny, Tuesday onto Dover and across by ferry to Calais. Finding ourselves now on French soil and driving on the right side of the road, we made our way to Sessione to camp for the night.

Finding the campsite was easy, Simon then tried to arrange a spot for the night
with the man at reception. He responded by giving Simon the phone to talk to someone (please remember that Simon’s limited French was equaled by this chaps grasp of English.) The someone turned out to be the local tourist board that insisted that it was too cold to camp, not wanting to find two icicles in the morning and then having to explain themselves. So despite our protests we spent the night in a low budgets, bare basics hotel room, we did however not get cold.

The next morning we planned to see the town of Chartres and so set off. My time distances studies at school being of no help and a quick trip took most of the day. We arrived in Chartres late afternoon, fortunately the cathedral is breathtakingly big, built in 25 years and surviving bombing raids, inside is dark and gloomy, dissolving any light managing to come through the colourful stained glass windows.

On the way to the campsite in Paris for that night we got slightly lost, the French it seems have been building motorways and changing road names since our map book was published 10 years ago. The campsite in Paris was great and we spent two days there.

We had planned to meet Sarah, a friend of ours, in Geneva for the weekend so we set off on Friday; we managed to get as far as Dijon and camped for the night. What a wonderful little find the site was and we were sorry to have to go in the morning. We arrived in Geneva about lunchtime, it is good to see Sarah as it has been some time, she made us a great lunch and then we decided to walk around the old town part of Geneva. So imagine our surprise when we ran into a marching band and ended up following them through the town. It turned out to be some end of winter festival with gaily-dressed people and bands all over the place. Then to top it off we had a cheese fondue for dinner and retired
to bed feeling most satisfied.

Sunday was a lazy morning followed by a walk in the mountains, oh, did I mention it was covered in snow. How silly of me not to tell you. There was thick snow everywhere and we spent more time playing in the snow than walking. Half-way there was hot chocolate to be had in a cabin café and then back down the hill for a cup of tea, as it had gotten considerably colder by the time we reached the car. What a great day!

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