Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Telford and Ludlow 6-10 Jun 18

Severn Gorge Caravan Park

A quick visit up to Telford to get the solar panel entry gland resealed. During the recent habitation check they found that there could be a chance of water ingress, as the entry is positioned right where the water tends to puddle on the roof of the van due to some very silly planning by Burstner. The entry gland is now well and truly sealed. However, on the way up, passing through the ridiculous roadworks on the M6 we picked up a stone chip on the windscreen that looked like it could spread. Our insurance covers windscreens through autoglass (don't we know it) and we rang to arrange for the chip to be repaired. They couldn't fit us in for another 2 days and when I filled in the online request there was a quote of over £150 for a stone chip (to be paid by the insurance, obviously). We spoke to a local company across the road (who also happen to subcontract to autoglass). They repaired the chip the following morning for £30. No wonder insurance premiums are so high!

The following day we had a long walk around Blists Hill Victorian Village again, enjoying their wonderful fish and chips for lunch (cooked in lard, not oil). Luvverly! It is a very interesting place to visit and we enjoyed our day in the bright sunshine.

On Friday we went off to stay near Ludlow with my sister, spending Friday night at the local village hall watching a Great British Bake Off entrant demonstrate how to make a cake and on Saturday morning visited Ludlow. We finally headed home on Sunday, absolutely exhausted and fed up with the stupid bloody roadworks and potholes in this bloody country!!! Grrrr!!!!!

Sunday, 3 June 2018

France, Belgium, Luxembourg & Germany 3- 26 May 18 - Week 4

Sunday 20th and Monday 21st - as mentioned in the previous page, we dossed and lazed around for sun pm and the whole of Monday, enjoying the warm sunshine and the luxury of having a lot of grass to laze about on after the tarmac hardstandings of the Stellplatz.

On Tuesday morning we went to the local supermarket to restock our supplies. That was a mistake! Fuel may be cheap in Luxembourg, but food certainly isn't. Moving on, we agreed that we found, in general terms, the Luxembourgians to be generally a miserable and stuck up bunch, so we continued our journey across the ploughed fields that pass as motorways in Belgium, getting stuck in huge traffic jams and finally ending up in a  little village called Thieu, famous for the boat lifts on the central canal. We parked up on an informal aire by the canal and, in very humid weather, we wandered along the waterways to admire both the old and the new boat lifts. Both are equally Impressive - and massive. Walking back from the new lift we stumbled across a crowd of locals dressed in costume and chucking oranges about. It was some form of carnival and looked great fun. The band continued late into the evening and the hot and sticky weather was eventually eased by a thunderstorm.

Weds 23 May.  We continued the move north, stopping near Lille at a massive shopping centre called Englos Les Geants. However there are height barriers everywhere, so it is totally motorhome unfriendly. They even had a sign pointing towards motorhome parking and when you turned off to follow the sign you came face to face with a 2m barrier, thus having to reverse back into traffic. Stupid bloody imbeciles. Wont be going back there again. Anyway, on to a very busy cite europe, got out of the van and noticed how bloody cold is was - 13 degress. Brrrrrrr. We did some shopping, then relaxed and watched a DVD (Quartet - brilliant film) in the van.

On Thursday we thought that we would drive around to the tunnel terminal and make breakfast there rather than hang about on the aire. We booked in, went to park up, but were directed straight onto an empty train. So much for breakfast!  We did stop at Ashford shopping mall for a quick mooch around and breakfast before moving on to Kelsey's farm in Bexley ready for a delightful couple of nights in Sarf East Larndarn.

Ashford outlet

Kelsey's Farm

Decent beer at last!

After family duties on Friday, we met Sharon and James for a pint or two in the only decent place in Bromley (The Partridge) before heading home on Saturday morning.

France, Belgium, Luxembourg & Germany 3- 26 May 18 - Week 3

Monday 14 May. The Mosel - tick. Onto the Rhine and a cross country route and a very steep descent into St Goar and the Loreleyblick campsite, which is right next to the Rhine and directly opposite the famous Loreley rock. Of course, we had to park on the front row so that we could enjoy the full effect (and noise) of the barges and steamers negotiating the bend in the Rhine, and the railway lines on each side of the valley. We wandered into St Goar, then took the ferry across to St Goarhausen, had a spot of coffee and cake, then decided to do a short stroll up the Loreley. Short stroll it wasn't - it's a bloomin' long climb!

We had always wanted to visit Koblenz and, as it was a short train ride into the city, on Tuesday we decided to have a day out. It was a lovely sunny day and we had a nice stroll around the place. Unfortunately, as with many of the towns and cities around here, it was completely flattened during the second world war and so it is not a particularly old and attractive city, but still worth a visit. I particularly liked the statue of the little rascal that spits water at people reading the sign telling you about the fountain. Excellent fun!

Deutsche Eck, where the Rhine meets the Mosel

Another Ice Cream?

On Wednesday 16th we moved down to the excellent Stellplatz just outside Bingen. From there we walked into the town, then took the ferry across the Rhine to  Rudesheim, which was packed and very touristy. Wandered around for a bit enjoying a beer in a Bavarian beer garden, which brought back some happy memories of time spend in Bavaria, before catching the ferry back and the walk back to the stellplatz.
The remains of the Hindenburg Bridge, built as a railway bridge in 1915, destroyed in WWII and never rebuilt

 Thursday 17 May - a bargain "round trip" which involved cycling into Bingen and catching the incredibly flash ferry (more like a cruise liner) across to the unfortunately named Assmanshausen, seeing the mouse tower on the way. It was very windy on the Rhine and we were lucky to avoid the flying chairs on the upper deck of the ferry.  There was not much to see in Assmanshousen so the next bit of the "Rundfahrt" was a trip up the chair lift to walk through the woods to the Niederwalddenkmal, an immense monument constructed to commemorate the founding of the German empire in 1871 after the end of the Franco-Prussian war. From there we took the gondola lift back down into Rudesheim, had bratwurst in the  Bavarian pub, walked on to the Asbach distillery for a tour and tasting, coffee and cake and then the last passenger ferry back across the Rhine to get back to the bus (via a beer garden of course) after an exhausting day.

Mäuseturm - the mouse tower. A lovely story exists about a bishop who was imprisoned there and eaten alive by mice. Nice!

It was a bit blowy

On Friday we headed into Trier and the big,  busy Stellplatz just outside the town. We walked into Trier and did some shopping before heading back, hoping that the circus next door wouldn't disturb us to much, but luckily it finished quite early. More than can be said for those noisy, poxy, rat-like yapping dogs that motorhomers seem so keen on and appear to be immune from the constant, high-pitched squeaking from the irritating little *******!!

Saturday 19th was royal wedding day. We sat outside and tuned in, only to be distracted by a couple of brits who wanted to strike up a conversation just at the important bit. Following the wedding, we wandered into Trier again in bright sunshine, had some wine at a wine stall, looked in the cathedral and generally bimbled around, albeit the place was rammed again as it was yet another bleeding holiday!

On Sunday we  started the journey back with a short hop over to Camping Bon Accueil in Luxembourg, where we dossed and lazed around for Sunday afternoon and the whole of Monday.