Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Visiting the UK :: day 1 and 2

I was going to try mobile blogging and keep you posted during our little tour through the UK, but telephone services were spotty and there wasn't as much free wifi available as I thought (isn't it funny how quick you get used to luxeries like that?). So I just enjoyed a week of being unplugged and will be telling you about our travels now that we're back.

The plan was to visit our daughter who is doing her Master in Translation Studies in Durham. I'd been there for a very short while when I dropped here off last September and my husband hadn't seen any of it yet. We also needed a bit of vacation and husband had been looking for a way to make longer rides with his beloved car for a while now. So we decided to take a few days extra and do a little touring around the UK.

Day 1 - Rotterdam :: Calais :: Folkestone :: Cambridge

This was when I thought I'd be blogging from my phone, so I took a picture when we had just left home.

And when we entered Belgium.

And France.

On the train. We'd never been to England using the Channel Tunnel. So that's what we did. We liked it. Only 35 minutes to get to the other side of the Channel.

Kent. Lovely typical British landscape.

And a typical British pub.


I think this was in Canterbury, but I'm not sure. We didn't get out of the car, because we saved our limited patience with castles and churches for Durham.

Obviously. ;-)

After a little incident at the Hartford Crossing toll booths (we didn't have cash and thay didn't take cards - oops!), we drove up North and found ourselves a camping site at Cambridge.

Our diner was typical British too (but without the vinegar, please).

Our tiny tent. Just big enough for two air matresses. That's all that would fit into our car. But what more do you need anyway? At least in the beautiful weather we had... that was the one thing that wasn't typical British this week.

 Day 2 -  Cambridge – Nottingham –  Rufford Abbey –  Castle Howard


Boiling water for coffee. We didn't have room to take food and pots etc, with us, but we do need hot water to make coffee in the morning. If you were looking at this picture with my husband around, he would tell you how I tried out the new-to-us powdered coffee that morning, decided it was watery, added a few scoops and ended up with a very strong brew. Too strong, even for my cafeine-loving husband. The other half of the jar lasted us the rest of the week... I guess my tastebuds don't work very well in the morning.

On the road again.

Cute little church.

Some llamas. Silly creatures. But that's probably what they're thinking about us too.

Beautiful tree.

Just driving and looking at the beautiful surroundings. Love that.

Aquaduct or viaduct. Our map wasn't sure either.

Another church.

Rufford Abbey. We took a little walk around the gardens there.

Such a spooky tree, especially when it's standing solo like this one. When your underneath the leaves look green, by the way.

The Abbey.

And then there was this. Not funny. Luckily we found another camping site where reception was closed, but we were welcomed by a friendly note, saying: "Late arrivals, please find yourself a pitch and we'll see you in the morning."
So that's what we did.


  1. we love road trips. :) i'm so glad you and husband took one together! and your tent looks like fun! also - i always take a morning or two to really get the coffee right when we are out camping. and how crazy that you could drive through three countries in one day! and under the sea, too!

    1. Yes, it was fun. And I think that after spending 9 days in a car and a very small tent without any dissonants, it's safe to say our marriage is doing great (again). ;-)
      Driving (well, not really, the car has to be parked in a train) under the sea was crazy, but it's only a short distance (about 50 km/32 miles - it took 35 minutes). Three countries... well, The Netherlands and Belgium are small and Calais is very close to the border, so it's sounds more impressive than it is. I think you have to consider them like states in the US. To us it's amazing that you can drive thousands of miles without leaving your country ;-)

  2. a road trip would either make it all better or make it all worse. i'm so glad this was the all-better sort of trip. :) and i know - it is amazing that ben and i could be 1700 miles away from each other, but only be half-way across our country! the US is so huge! i do think most of the countries in europe are similar in size to the smaller states in the US . . . not sure how i would feel, knowing i was on a train in a tunnel under the sea . . .