Wednesday 21st October
We’ve finally managed to get away and are now sitting happily on an aire in France. We were hoping that Frankie would have had his little bits tweaked before we set off but the garage phoned last week to let us know that there was lots of building works happening next door and it was going to be too difficult to actually get us in the workshop. We’re being brave and hoping that Frankie behaves himself. The easiest way to think about Frankies issue is to imagine he has asthma and if he runs to far in one go he gets out of breath, we’re hoping to move about in little short hops so he doesn’t get wheezy again.
We made really good time to Dover arriving only four and a half hours early – will he let us on? Of course, there is space but… it will be an additional £60. If we try for the ferry before our booking they will let us on for free (if there is a space), if we arrive two ferries early it’s £20, so off the Marine Parade for lunch and wait for a cheap slot.
The crossing was uneventful, very few people, very few children and sit wherever we like.
It was dark when we arrived and we had already planned to drive down to the aire at Boulogne, it’s not too far, unless Stella gets her knickers in a twist and takes us 10 miles out of the way, we must have been round every roundabout in Bolougne.
We arrived in the aire at exactly the right time, just after the money collector had been around collecting the fees. It was dark when we arrived and I didn’t worry about levelling off as you can see from the view next morning. It’s been raining throughout the night but it was starting to look promising.
Last view of England for a little while, it was very clear and you could easily make out Dover.
Our next stop was Fort Mahon Plage, a lovely large aire near to the front and shops. Luckily for us (?) there was a market and we overspent on cheese! Why do we always do that?
Fort Mahon doesn’t have any forts, it has some German gun emplacements left over from the Atlantic Wall and some nice shops.
In the summer this must be a lovely place to visit, at the moment it is a little bit chilly but undaunted we brits managed to rustle up a french lunch and sit on the beach.
It didn’t take long before it started raining and w had to beat a hasty retreat and find some shelter. It did clear later and we went for another walk.
Huge flat beaches, the finest, cleanest sand you could ever hope for, just crying out for a little bit of sun.
The aire at Fort Mahon was €10 per night but as we approached the machine a fellow motorhomer let us know that it was free now. There were no signs at all mentioning the out of season freebies but we chanced it and escaped unscathed and with €10 still in my pocket.
Next stop is Treport.
This photo doesn’t make the place look particularly inviting, it’s been raining all morning but it’s not bad here. We are perched on top of some very high cliffs, someone local has got SFR wifi and we have locked into their broadband for free.
Part of the town below us, just like a little toy town.
We walked down the long staircase with the knowledge that there was a funicular railway to take us back up top. Dotted around the town are lots of photos and information boards about the history to Treport. There was a photo of this part of town which Napoleon had built for some of his wounded soldiers to recuperate. It looks almost exactly the same except they had white horse instead of white vans (of course).
Treport is a busy fishing port.
With lots of boats!
Between the open sea and the harbour was a large lock so we stood and watched as the boats were lifted up and the fishermen sorted their catch.
This was on the deck of a small boat. I’m not sure how any of the fish were caught, we couldn’t see any nets, fishing lines or scuba gear.
And here is our free trip to the top of the mountain, very civilised and very free.