Given that this trip, covering a ferry crossing and a spell at Bonterra Park at Benicassim is pretty much the
same as 'Spain 2016' I was a bit stuck as to how I could make the ferry crossing different. Although we were to be on a different vessel, the 'Cap Finisterre' sailing to Bilbao rather than the 'Pont Avon' sailing to Santander, a ship is a ship pretty much.
Well those helpful folk at Brittany Ferries helped me out - with just 48 hours notice they cancelled the sailing. Just like that, the weather was just too rough they said. Though I must admit, given
the strong winds we've had recently I did expect a bouncy crossing, but at least we would have got there.
Thinking all passengers would have received the same email I wasted no time
in booking a crossing to Calais on Le Shuttle, at least that doesn't get effected by rough seas.
And the car park at Citi Europe is where we awoke this morning ready to face a 1,000 mile
journey to our campsite having come over yesterday evening. Parking here overnight is really catching on. There were quite a few motorhomes here this morning.
Popping out to take a couple
of photographs I noticed that two of our neighbours had dumped their grey water all over the car park. It really is a disgusting habit. They don't even make an effort to park near a drain. It really is unforgivable as there is a dump station at the Carrefour
fuel station on the edge of the site. Such behaviour gives us all a bad name and if we're not careful such selfish behaviour could lose us the benefit of parking here.
Whilst The Chef popped
in to Carrefour supermarket for a fresh baguette as soon as it opened at 09:00, I prepared the vehicle for the road and warmed the engine up.
Normally we would avoid the Paris area by going
Calais/Rouen/Evereux/Chartres/Orleans then on to the toll road heading south. However because I had only expected to drive the last 300 miles or so once landed in Spain, the vehicle is loaded well and truly and because of that I didn't want to travel across
country. Instead, we would for the first time bite the bullet and head towards Paris and experience its peripheral road, a bit like our M25 around London. Except that when we finally arrived there it was amidst the suburbs of the city and more like London's
North Circular Road, but with two or three more lanes to cope with. It was a nightmare and took us a long while to navigate - never again.
I wanted to get a good days driving in as this would
lighten the load tomorrow. We'd hit the road having bought the baguette, taken on fuel, and dumped our water etc, at about 09:45. Towards the end of the day at the wheel it was dark and wet. I was caught out by the French rush hour at 18:00, I thought
I'd managed to avoid it but no, they stayed at work late today just to catch us out. By then we were just north of Clermont-Ferrand and had vehicles coming at us from all directions as it seemed to have several junctions to major roads there. It was all quite
stressful and I was pleased when we finally found a Truckstop south of the Clermont-Ferrand and pulled over for the night. By then it was 19:00. It had been a very long day. Never mind, it should take the pressure off tomorrow.
Going online to check for emails and to catch up on the news I see that Theresa May has chickened out of having the vote on her Brexit deal. She really has to go. I had high hopes for her when she became PM, she was saying all
the right things, ut there's been no substance to it. I do however greatly admire her resilience given gthat shes got the baboon's arse in Scotland, the Welsh, the DUP (serves her right for calling an early election) Comrade Corbyn and his henchmen, and both
Remain and leave politicians up against her she does have the grit or stubbornness to carry on.