I’m on the bus on my way to Paris. We are going through Leeds heading towards Ashford tunnel. My bum is sore from sitting in the same position for a while, at least my feet get a rest, and I was able to catch up on yesterday’s events.
Jet lag has now left the building and I am running in sync with London time. I woke up at 6:30 which is the latest I’ve woken all week, had a cup of coffee and finished the final packing of my bag. Andrew and Kim have been wonderful, they really made me feel at home and let me leave some of my stuff at their place until I get back. Tanks guys.
London knew I was leaving today because it absolutely bucketed down. I said my goodbye’s and got a great big smile from Charlie.
I walked to Turnham Green station and had to pull out the raincoat for my pack out. Didn’t take long for that to come in handy. I got on the district line and was happy to find that the coach station was on the same line. I didn’t have to get off to change or anything. While I was on the train I noticed that they requested that you be there one hour before the departure time. Somehow that slight piece of information had slipped my mind…oops. I arrived at Victoria station and had 20 mins till departure time. I recognized the area because I had been here before during my tour on Monday. It’s a short walk down from the palace. It was still pouring down with rain but I had to get to the National coach terminal.
I followed the signs, they could have been a lot more helpful. I asked one of. The staff how to get to the terminal and he was most helpful… It took me about ten minutes to get to the check-in window and presented my e-ticket. “Sorry mate you’ve just missed it!” said the gentleman behind the counter, I am sure the momentary look of despair on my face gave him a sence of worth. I was his entertainment for the day and his job was done. “just kiddin’ mate, your leavin’ from gate twenty” I laughed that nervous laugh that celebrities laugh when they have just been punked and went to the gate…. Did anyone else notice that I have not mentioned food? That’s because up to this point I hadn’t had breakfast, the bus was going to be called at any minute and I went to the shop for a well-rounded breakfast of champions… A coke and a mars bar. Got to the shop and found Cherry Coke, I hadn’t had it in years, it was by far the winner for me.
I got back to terminal which was all of 20 meters away and stood patiently in line. I looked at my watch, and it was a bit past the hour and I expected we would have boarded, I asked a staff member standing by the door what was happening and her said they’ve almost finished boarding… This guy did not have the same playful jest in his voice. I promptly grabbed my pack and ran to the bus, the closed door opened and the driver who was obviously Either French or Spanish, both because he looked irritated and because he spoke broken English with a non descript accent.
I had obviously brought to the attention of other Paris bound passengers that the bus was soon departing because no less than a dozen people came after me. All of them wet and confused as to how they missed the call.
I sat next to a guy that actually heard the call. He said that the call was made my a man who walked in for a moment holding a large blue “P”. He said….in irritated broken English… Paris, Paris and walked out and back to the coach.
The guy I was sitting next to soon realized he was being dripped on from something on the ceiling… the rain had somehow made it way through the ceiling all of the lining the over head control unit and onto his head… Lol. Now I have two seats to myself… He moved to a different seat. Win.
So we eventually depart the bus station and since then I have been writing. I had to recap yesterday, and I had to get today up to date.
While my head was in my lap concentrating intently on my iPad, we had come to a stop at a set of traffic lights. The driver sounded the horn, and a split second later we were overtaken by a double-decker. Then a lady pushing a pram crossed the road looking back at our driver with a look of praise. Had he not hooted, she and her baby could have been seriously hurt.
Another interesting thing that took place… On the freeway on rout to the euro tunnel, we were overtaken my a Lamborghini Merciolago. I didn’t even see it pass, I was told that it passed us. We then overtook the Lamborghini. Somehow he became involved in an accident with two other cars. I looked back at the photos just then and can’t for the life of me figure out what happened. But I wouldn’t be surprised if anyone was injured.
We got to the Euro Tunnel, I was wondering how it was going to work with the train and the bus type thing that would be revealed to me in a little while. In the meantime there was a slight hold up at the gate for passport processing. This hold up, what ever it was delayed us enough to miss the train, it was a 50 minute wait for the next one. Yay… The next train finally arrived and the digital signs guided us through to board Turns out that the train is a “drive on drive of”f train, wide enough to fit a coach. We were first in and consequently were at the front of the train. We came to a stop and in front of us the was an open section of the train. This is where we would drive off the train. Then like a sleeve this section started to close. It was all very star wars like, there were only few windows, but it didn’t matter since we were going through a tunnel. I guess it took about 40mins to get through the tunnel? I can’t remember exactly I was reading my lonely planet book but it wasn’t very long.
We drove off of the train and continued our journey.
There was a posted Comment by Jeni about me taking photos of cars… I don’t think that’s going to change. While on the bus today I saw a Lamborghini Merciolago, I’m told that it over took us and ten minutes later it was a wrecked Lamborghini. He somehow ended up in an accident with two small cars, and looking at the photos I can’t for the life of me figure out how it came to its sudden demise. No doubt the wet road and speed were the cause. I also saw a Ferrari Testorossa, another Ferrari… It was blue and didnt count lol… And finally a TVR Ceyanne. It’s like the Cerebra, but it’s a soft top. I only know this because I got to speak to the owner. He and his wife were from the UK and were going to their sons wedding in Germany.
On the bus I met a girl named kat. She is German, currently living in London and is heading over to France (where she also lived). She was very impressed with my new fancy pants lonely planet guide Europe on a shoe string, she gave me a few pointers as to what to see in Paris… All of a sudden three nights seems like it’s not enough. BTW, I just realized that There is a possible drama… I will see how it plays out tonight and give you the update.
We finally had a stop at a road stop. Something big happened…I had a burger and chips for lunch, or rather a Cheeseburger en Frites. Which means that I had … Wait for the awesomeness… French Fries in France! BOOM! I know right ? How awesome is that.
I grabbed a couple of snacks from the store and brought went back to the bus, the bus driver was very irate… I got the impression that I’m not meant to be eating on the bus.. So I put it in my bag and didn’t think anything of it and go on the bus. Most people on the bus were eating when he came up and checked that everyone had boarded. The dude almost lost his kit! Just about blew his top. It was then I actually recognized that he was speaking Spanish. Must have been the passion in his voice that was missing earlier. He went down stairs and resumed our journey. He then rattles something off over the speaker…. Has anyone realized I said that this guy is speaking Spanish, and we are on a bus from London on the way to Paris? Maybe they want everyone equally confused. Hmmm. Well done on that one.
Well time for a nap. Caio for now.
As i said earlier, pictures are a bit hard to put up, but I will try and update any posts with pics later.