|CHRIS AND MIKE IN EARLY MORNING MODE|
Well it was 'early' if you happen to be retired..!
The ferry was booked to leave Poole docks at 0830 hours....we had to be there at about 0700hrs. Peter had stayed at my place overnight so that he didn't have the trouble of getting to the ferry from his home at Blandford.
Mike and Chris were going to cycle in from their home at Wimborne a distance of about 9.5 miles. When Peter and I arrived at the ferry port at about 0715 Mike and Chris told us that they had been there since about 0600hrs having left home at about 0500hrs.
Now that was EARLY !!.... Apparently they wanted to make sure that they didn't miss the ferry...!!! The photo above shows the effect the early start had on them both....they sat in the lounge area of the ferry for most of the trip with a glazed look in their eyes.
|CHERBOURG - STRAIGHT TO TOURIST INFORMATION|
I waited outside the TI with Mike and the bikes while Peter and Chris went in to raid the free leaflet racks.
In the 10 mins that Mike and I stood outside two people approached us interested in our ride.They wanted to know where we were from? ...where we were going?.....what sort of bike we had?.....What GPS etc etc. Apparently there was a cruise ship in the port and both these people were passengers from the ship. Both were Americans and they stood and chatted to us for quite some time.
Finally Chris and Peter emerged with the required leaflets and we finally set off back in the direction we had just come. It was a nice bright and sunny day- warm but with a nice breeze.
|MIKE IN PRO PHOTOGRAPHER MODE PEERING OVER A FENCE|
After about 10 - 12 miles Mike could be found peering over a fence.
Now Mike is a Professional Photographer.. but I never thought that he was into peering over fences to try and get a scoop shot of some French Celebrity !! As it turned out Mike was just trying to get into a good position to take some shots of a Chateau.
|CHATEAU - OBJECT OF MIKES DESIRE....(AFTER CHRIS OF COURSE)|
|ANOTHER BUILDING IN THE GROUNDS OF THE CHATEAU|
Now I love French campsites, as even the municipal sites offer good facilities and at reasonable cost.
When you have a small one or two man tent and no car you don't want to be charged the same as a family with a car and a six berth bungalow tent!
In the UK I think that backpackers and cyclepackers often get a raw deal at a lot of campsites where they just don't seem to cater for the lightweight camper. In France it is different....they have a good pricing policy which includes the lightweight camper....Not once during the whole trip did we pay more than 6 euros for a pitch and some of the facilities were really 5 star.
|OUR FIRST NIGHT'S PITCH|
It was a Farm campsite and it was in a fantastic rural setting.
Three grown men pushed Chris into the farmhouse in front of us all as she is the only one who can speak French. The Farmers wife showed us all the facilities which were pretty good and told us that it would be 4 euros each.... UK campsites please note...4 euros..!!
Mike and Chris were pretty tired after their early start but we were all glad to have arrived at our first site of the trip. There only seemed to be a couple of other people camping in the field and I must say that it was a really nice and tranquil spot.
It had been a longish day for everyone...but the trip had finally started..........
To be continued.......................................
NB: I will also be posting some 'arty farty' type pictures taken in France on my Photo Site 'Aura of Past Shadows'.