Suffice it to say the traffic was murder in London! Oh my Godfried Bomans, I had never seen so many coaches not being able to park! Fortunately I was able to park in a spot where I a. didn't have to pay and b. wasn't crowded and c. in the shade. It was a lovely spot and when I made it to the other side of the Thames I took a Thames Clipper and raced along the river! The only time on Tuesday, since it was so incredibly busy on the roads.
|Tower of London|
On day 3 we went to Duxford Imperial War Museum, Wimpole Hall and Cambridge and the roads were okay. Not too much traffic and we were able to get everywhere on time. Back was the same, even though I did feel queasy by the time we crossed Dartford Bridge. Driving on the left side of the road, with the steering wheel on the left and then looking down over the railing into the River Thames: not a good thing for me! The day didn't finish that well for me though. We were nearly at the meeting point and I had to turn left with my (14 meter) coach. I was straddling both lanes so I could take the turn properly without hindering anybody when a car suddenly drove in front of me and stopped again since his light was red. I honked the horn to let him know I was not happy with his behaviour and turned left. By the time we had gotten to the meeting point I had told the kids on board to immediately walk towards their host families and not inspect the damage. The next thing I know a woman is walking up to the coach, holds out a badge, tells me she's a police woman and can I please get out of the coach! Yes, I had hit the car and it turned out to be an unmarked policecar!!!
An hour and a half, two more police cars, five more police officers, a breathalising test and a sermon later I was finally allowed to leave again! I maintain my stand though: if she had just waited for ten more seconds, we would have both been fine! Idiot!
On Thursday of course the traffic wasn't any better and we had to make a change to the program in order for me to have my required 9 hours of rest. Fortunately by the time we left at night the traffic was a considerable amount less and we made good time. Until I turned into a wrong street that is and nearly got stuck! In the end I had to reverse back out (after moving a car a few meters along, sigh), turn and retrace my tracks.
|Mail Box in Cambridge|
Friday started off with more beautiful sunshine (we had had beautiful weather all week) and we left on time-ish. When we arrived in Dover though, we realised that even though we were on time, we would not catch an earlier ferry: it was so incredibly busy! When we finally made it to the check-in it was 11.40am and we were booked for the 12.40pm ferry. An hour to kill! However, someone liked us anyway and the next thing we know we are on the 11.50am ferry (last on) and we are leaving Dover Harbour! We drove through France and Belgium, had a couple of stops and at exactly a quarter to ten at night I steered my coach onto the school's parking lot!
What a week...