Friday 2nd September
Another peaceful night, if only we can stay for a few days but there is some sort of event happening until the 5th September and the aire is now closed.
We were in Belgium (just found out I’ve been spelling it wrong) and to get to Germany we have to go into the Netherlands. By some quirk of geography, history or politics there is a lump of the Netherlands squeezing it’s way between Belgium and Germany which may explain why my phone has been going loopy. I keep getting messages, sometimes 30 a minute saying welcome to Belgium, welcome to the Netherlands, welcome to Belgium, etc…
We filled up with LPG today. We did see it at 29.9c but by the time you’ve seen the sign you’re past and on your way to the next. Where we stopped it was 30.1c per litre which is 26p (cheaper than it was at Morrisons 13 years ago). I have two adaptors for the gas, a dish for France and a screw in thingy for Italy. Sometimes in Spain and Portugal you have to borrow another adaptor. I had to use the Italian connection (I was told it was Italian) hence the title of this blog (sometimes I have to really think hard to get a good title, and today as you can tell, I wasn’t trying very hard at all).
We arrived in Dusseldorf 6 hours early and accidentally got in the right lane for our camping and were waved through and parked without any problem.
This is our little row, 11 of us each side with grass and shade. We are under the Dusseldorf Airport flight path with jets taking off every minute but they do stop at 11pm.
Our row is one of 18 and there are 6 parking areas – using my mathematical skills and counting on fingers and toes I reckon that there are over 2,000 motorhomes here, mostly from Germany but there are a couple of British vans here. On the bus going to the show there was a British couple behind us and we got talking, they were Holiday Site Managers at Canterbury so knew Andy, Lorraine, Neil and Pat, it’s a small world.
On our travels we’ve seen some large motorhomes but nothing prepared me for the very first motorhome we saw.
The doors were firmly locked to dissuade us peasants from taking a peek but then the price tag managed to do that for us. A snip at €1,330,000, even when we had a really good exchange rate that is still rather a big chunk of our yearly earnings.
To be fair it wasn’t clear if that price included the car in the back, a classic Mercedes 300 something or other. Following are a couple more of the biggies that we weren’t allowed to touch. Some we weren’t even allowed onto the stand.
There were also ready built Adventure Trucks, this one made Neil & Pat’s look tiny but was priced at €680,000 – think of all the work you could have saved Neil!! 🙂
There are hundreds of caravans and motorhomes here, even British built caravans. Someone will be able to tell me what the current price for a Lunar Clubman SI is in Sterling, I don’t think they are using the correct conversion rates. We were surprised that they had done very little to Europeanise the caravan, at least Sprite had managed to move the door to the other side.
For exactly the same price as a Lunar Clubman you could get yourself this very nice Hobby, island bed, wrap around seating for 10, twin heikis and leather seats. If only it wasn’t 2.6m wide and particularly prone to going astray. Not wanting to point any fingers of course but we did see some of the cast of My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding later on in the evening (German version of course).
How about this, another Hobby, again at the same price as a Lunar but far more interesting.
Last van of the day, an Adria, not the best layout inside but then they didn’t have to try and cram things in. Total length is over 11m and it weighs in at 2,800kg.
We’ve done one full day at the show, I’ll be posting this during our second day, I have some internet issues (thank you Three) but inside the show there is free wifi for an hour with each admission ticket. We’ve also got a couple of kilos of brochures, long life bags, pens, keyring and stickers.
My feet are sore, my back hurts and I’m really tired but I have been promised a visit to the beer tents tonight.
Just got back from the beer tent and we had a fantastiche nacht, as we say. Lots of local beer, a live band playing classics like neun und neunzig rot ballots, wir sind das champions and of course Rocking allies uber das Vurld. Luckily they didn’t play Das Hof California.
Two couples sat next to us and started talking foreign to each other. It was 20 minutes before we realised that they were Scottish. We spent the evening swapping tall stories and tips. If you’re reading this Murray, Linda, Ian and Nicola let it be known that we had a lovely time and we owe you a beer or two Murray.