Top of Mt Doom, NZ, black and white
Top of Mt Doom, NZ, black and white
  • Le Grand Départ
    • 28/05/2022
Train to London, no drama
Rock band at Alexandra Palace, (Mogwai), ear punishing volumes, good stuff.
Train to Dover, check. No bike reservations, so
turned up early to avoid disappointment!
Good job too, as am soon joined by a combination of 3 bikes, 2 pushchairs and a mobility scooter. Never mind the hundreds of partying youths heading to a dance festival.
So, speeding towards the channel, pondering the other side, and then -

At Ashford the tannoy announces: "Everyone off! Signal failure in the Dover area!"
An hour later its "this train calls at Folkestone.... And hopefully Dover. Maybe". But it isn't.
Only 10 miles from Folkestone though so I saddle up and actually ride the bike for once, and after a gruelling climb out of town, its a lovely run along the cliff tops, with what looks suspiciously like a spitfire buzzing overhead.

Arriving at the ferry terminal I met two lively French lasses on a tandem, each precariously balancing a suitcase on the handlebars - I definitely read about this somewhere - the ferries aren't taking foot passengers, so people are turning up with any excuse for a bicycle to get on board! I thought this was generally put into practice coming the other way but whatever. You could make a killing with a second hand bike shop at each end of the crossing

Just now a 30km cruise through the flat, tranquil french countryside, with the champions league final kick off being delayed long enough for me to extricate myself from the various fields that the villainous sat nav directed me to, and find an airbnb for a "soft landing" first night. Shame about the result, but the game panned out on entirely predictable fashion.

Anyway, tomorrow is another day, and I have only the vaguest idea where I'm heading. Hooray!


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