Saturday, 28 March 2015

Shhhhhhh Dover is closed, Brighten is busy. Plymouth is pretty.

As we started our tour around Dover, we found out why it was so was closed.  Hahaha. We went to see the castle, closed - We passed the First and Last Pub - closed. Walked up on the White Cliffs and part of the trail was closed, and you cannot be hungry before 8:00am as breakfast places do not open until 9:00am!  We did manage to walk across the White Cliffs to the other side with a view of France in the distance and rolling green hillsides where local farmers and the sheets and donkey's.  On the way back you have a choice of walking high or low.  We chose to go low, on a path that appeared to be the most traveled.  After passing a hobbit hole, and trekking through the Shire, we came to a dead end, essentially, the path was closed as well!  It was a 25 foot vertical wall that you would have to scale to get to the road.  I tried to do it, but it was slippery mud, and slide down wiping out Mark.  He did everything possible not to land on top one me, and stop me from sliding over the cliff.  We laughed and could not believe that this will used path ended up know where.  We decided that this is where all the homeless people and the drug addicts must live.  We turned around and took the high road.  Just a side note - went you are on the White Cliffs your cell service changes to France, so make sure roaming is turned off!  We then hit the road to Brighton.

Driving is still a little bit off challenge as thier roadways are about the size of the pathway along the bow river.  This is considered a dual lane highway, with trucks and busses on either side.  I do pee a little each time a truck is barreling towards me, at 60 mph, which what they seems to think -have loads of room to get by - shesh!

The coast has lots of little villages,  with Hastings begin the one that stood out for both of us.  Though we did not stop there, the views going through city centre were beautiful and looked a little like Monte Carlo without all the yachts, fancy cars, and the weather!

Made it to Brighton.  Unlike Dover, Brighton was not closed and a very busy Centre!  We chose a hotel in the middle of it all, just steps away from the pier.  That had it good points and bad.  Getting there was interesting, thank god Mark could navigate from anywhere on this earth, and once we arrived it was worth it.  Had a huge fish and chip supper, walked along the Pier and surrounding area then headed back to the hotel for the night to  decide what tomorrow would look like.

Portsmouth, where we were born, was to be our next stop, but we decided that we would just have a quick look and continue on.  Had a great full English breakfast in Cosham, where Mark was born, and continued on. Plymouth was the destination!  We moved of of the coastal roads, as it would take days to get anywhere.  We arrived in Plymouth 4 hours later.

Plymouth is spectacular!  Again we chose a hotel within walking distance of the Pier and the city centre that had free parking, that is now important to us!  Parking is tricky.  Little did we know that the parade was made for clown cars, so it will be interesting getting out!  It was raining when we got there, so we just starting walking towards to Pier, but the wind was blowing a gale, so back into town to find a quaint little bakery and had a scone, Devonshire cream, jam, hot chocolate and coffee.  By the time we had finished, it had stopped raining, and the sun was peaking through the clouds! We continued walking around. It was a good mix of old vs new, even made Mark go into a shop!

We heading back down to the pier, and the views were spectacular!  Thank you weather gods for cooperating.

Today maybe Penzance for us - we have learned that the kids are now on spring break here, so it could become alittle busier............plans may change.

Thursday, 26 March 2015

A Strange Vibe

Dover is a quaint seaside town with a strange vibe. Our hotel is right on the front, on a street that gives the impression of an off-season tourist town. It is soooo quiet -- a sharp contrast to the hurly burly of M25 traffic. But this is also a busy ferry terminal, so when we walk over just a couple of streets, there is constant stream of cars.

Those cars aren't stopping. The shops seem to be struggling to get any business. No doubt this is in part due to the off season, but it must be hard for many of them to bring in custom at the best of times. The high street was all but closed down by 6pm, not that it was really very "open" to begin with. This led me to quip "Dover... the town that never wakes...".

The castle on the hill is very imposing, and we hope to check that out today. As is usual all over the UK, we kept running into heritage buildings of all sorts as we wandered aimlessly. Dover seems to have more churches per square foot than most, with many converted to more industrial purposes.

Wandering aimlessly is our goal for this trip, and the Iphone's navigation map makes that easy to do since it seems to lose track of our set destination from time to time. We were wandering in circles for a while, but we now know the general solution when lost: just take that Effingham Street...

Dover done in a day!!

We made it here with no glitches or hiccups.  LHR was deserted, and we just sailed through in record time.  Off to the car rental place, and was happy to get a Mazada 3.  Mark could almost fit in it, and we could hide our luggage as we go on the road trip.  The only bad news, it the car is brand new, and has not been enjoyed by others!  What this means is all the rim dents will be mine as I get used to parking.  The good news is you can park in either direction, so many turns will be in order, so I will always park on my side.

Dover is a little town, and pretty. Our hotel is right on the waterfront so we can see the white cliffs of Dover and the castle from our window.  Our hotel is an old building that has quite a slant in the floor, so we trek up and down a hill just to go the the toilet. Lol.

The weather has been so good, I have been forced to pull out my sunglasses!  Walked around the town, which becomes deserted at 6:01pm, have a lovely dinner (thanks mum and dad) Mark and I managed to stay up until 8:00pm!!!!

Doing the castle this morning, then we are on the road...........but before that we are in search of the best full English breakfast...........can't you just taste it?

When we have better wifi I will upload pictures!

Monday, 23 March 2015

The Final Prep!

Mark and I are off for a 10 day adventure back to England.  Back to where we were born, played, and went to school. It is just him and I with no fixed itinerary, maps to get us through the back roads of England from Dover to Penzance. It will be a little bit of "Call the Midwife" with a smattering of "Coronation Street" to end up at "Downton Abbey".  Five days on the road, and four days in London - this should be a memorable experience..................The sunglasses are just wishful thinking.  Just throwing it out to the universe for a least one sunny day!!!!