Where's Frankie?

Don’t take the cheque book

Monday 5th September

Day two of the Motorhome Show and we’re raring to go as soon as my hangover passes. I only had four small glasses of Schlosser Alt, maybe one of the glasses was dirty.

We start off with a couple of caravans from many years ago.


All fibreglass construction, two beds kitchen and toilet.


Another unusual shape, the front end was completely flat as well, so much for aerodynamics.


And a nice little pop up caravan.


Now onto serious stuff. I’ve never heard of this make but they are from Sweden and it’s a very nice van, on a par with the Hobby and Fendt in quality terms. You’re unlikely to see any in the UK though since this one was a cheeky €70,000


This is why you don’t take a cheque book with you. The slide out containing the lounge, kitchen, wash basin and king sized bed has been taken off so that you can see inside. 


From the other side you have the under floor garage. Yours for only €1,650,000

We came home with another few kilos of magazines and I’ve left Lucy to sort through them all. One hall was dedicated to travel firms from all over Europe. Germany had stands for each little area of the country. The problem we had is that we don’t know where the different areas are so had to take leaflets from all of them and hope that we can sort them out later.

Here is a summary of what we think of the Motorhome Show.

  • It’s big – two days at least, more if you are really looking to buy.
  • Prices seem to be good, foreign imports (from the UK) being an exception. 
  • You have to pay for parking which is €18 for 24 hours starting from 5pm. We turned up 5 hours early and were given a very nice place.
  • The accessories hall was a little disappointing, mostly awnings, but there were some things that we have never seen before.
  • If we were ever going to be buying a brand new motorhome we would definitely come here to do the business. There were some very good deals however, I don’t think they will be that interested in Frankie since he is right hand drive.
  • Your entry ticket (which you can buy online with the parking tickets) allows you free travel on trains, trams and buses within the Rhine Ruhr area. This is a huge area from Nijmegen in the NW, Borken in the N, Umma in the E and Wegberg in the SW. I think you can find the full area on www.vrr.de  Bear in mind that the cost of the two day entry ticket to the show is only €7 per person if bought online and you get an hours free wifi.
  • If you are a plane spotter you will be in your element, Every conceivable type of modern jet is taking off from the airport.
  • There is a catalogue available for €5 but don’t waste your money. It gives very little information that you can’t find anywhere else.
  • Water, elsan, toilet and shower facilities are available. Electric hook up costs extra.
  • Keep your parking entry receipt, you are logged in and out. 

We stayed until Monday morning and were dreading leaving the site but when we woke up in the morning there were in the region of 200 vans left on the site.

We had an easy drive to our next overnight in Zons, 12 miles south of Dusseldorf and decided to try out an Aldi on the way. We found Aldi in Spain and Portugal to be not very good places to shop in but this one was very good, almost as good as the one in Upminster. Most of the things we needed were easily recognisable which included the nectar of life.

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And this is what I managed to rescue from the aisles. I’ve done a taste test on three of them, worked my way from left to right and can report as follows. Karlskrone is worth every cent that I paid for it, but not a penny more. At 29c I really shouldn’t be too fussy but it was a bit like tasteless Carlsberg and we all know how tasteless that is. Lowenbrau coming in at a princely 79c was lovely, strong, full bodied and slipped down rather quickly. Krombacher was alright, but not a patch on the Lowenbrau. I bought 10 cans of beer in Aldi and next to each one was panda – 25c. Our daughter, Emma, has informed us that this is a deposit on the tin so I can return it and get my money back. I didn’t find out until I had already put one can in the rubbish bin and the next morning a bin dipper came round and rescued it. 

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Here is our pitch at Zons, there is electric and waste bins but nothing else and it is €5 per night. I think we’ll have to get used to paying for parking in Germany. To the right we had a lovely little garden with rose bushes and after our walk we had a pleasant afternoon reading.

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We are parked 50 metres from the Rhine, a very busy waterway with plenty of commercial and tourist shipping to watch. It looks a bit cloudy here but the weather was very warm and the sun did keep popping out.

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Zons was founded in 1388 and consists of city walls, a couple of churches and a windmill.

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One of the city gates, luckily Stella didn’t route us through here and she seems to have got rid of her hiccups.

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Lots of lovely old buildings but not a person in sight. The schools have gone back today and all the shops are closed on Mondays.

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The windmill is open April to mid October, from 1pm until 5pm, Friday to Sunday, just our luck, it’s Monday.

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This is where my German O-level (unclassified) lets me down. The best that we can work out is that a pig herder from Zons met the Bishop of Cologne on the road and you can make up the rest of it. I think the Bishop got taught a lesson that day.

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Last view of Zons city walls with the windmill in the distance.

2 thoughts on “Don’t take the cheque book

    1. Mark Post author

      Endless taste testing isn’t easy you know.
      We found a pfand machine in lidls yesterday, put your cans in one at a time and out comes money. We will check and see if it is worth bringing empty cans from home next time.

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