Our original plan was to bypass France altogether. We’d sail from our home Portsmouth straight to San Sebastián. In our imaginations we’d literally be able to wave goodbye to our house from the ship and arrive at sunnier climes.
But there were no dog friendly cabins available until 2032. So we resigned to taking the much more dog friendly Euro Tunnel and drive across France to get to Spain.
Let me just explain our complex relationship with France. We LOVE the idea of France. The wine, champagne drinking, croissant and cheese culture sounds perfect. France is our ex who we keep sleeping with and waking up horribly disappointed.
Everytime we come here we give up and go to Disneyland instead.
The only exception to this is the South of France. Towns like Nice and Cannes that exist in a different timeframe from the rest of the nation.
We hope to visit those parts later.
Back to the journey. We booked our very first airbnb. It looked quaint, but a bit remote.
What we don’t get about France, is where the fuck is everyone!? It’s like driving around after an apocalyptic event. 6pm on a Wednesday on a major road = No other car in sight. 7pm through a village or town = not one light visible through a window.
We finally make it to our airbnb at 7.30. The owner greets us, shows us around and then retreats back into darkness to the house next door. Only there is NO visible sign anyone is there!
Meanwhile the house we’re staying in is lit up like the National Lampoons Christmas Vacation House and is probably accountable for 20% of northern France’s entire carbon footprint tonight.
Dinner time right? WRONG. We are in France! Just pop out for dinner? Can’t, it’s gone 8pm. Pop to the shop? Can’t. It’s 30km away and why would it possibly be open?
Neil had the look of horror when I suggested cooking Hughs Pepper Pig Pasta with Baked Beans. But if he insisted on packing them then he has to eat them!
Join us tomorrow when we will probably buy a house here.