Logistical Nightmare

How I would love to win the Lottery, or the Euromillions, it would make life so much easier!

I’ve been trying to work out exactly where Melissa and I are going in France. This includes when I pick her up from Heathrow early(ish) on Sunday 15th. I still have to book the Eurotunnel, and have left it this late due to lack of funds and trying to work out the timing. Also from Heathrow, I have to navigate the M25 and M26, which hopefully won’t be overly bad on a Sunday morning! This means I have to give ourselves a bit of extra time to get there (in case of the flight being late, or some hold up on the motorway) and we also need to ‘check in.’
Then from Calais, it’s some long drive to Pau – and although using the motorways over there would be quicker, the tolls are extortionate! And some thing I can’t really afford! This means staying mainly on the Nationale and Departmental routes – and also means I’ll need to print the route out! Gah!
The  http://www.autoroutes.fr/en/routes.htm is the route planner I’m using, as both RAC and AA route planners for Europe are rubbish. Thank god the French version is pretty good! It says driving time of just over 14 hours, so with a break or two, is more likely to be 16!
Say we get to Calais for 11am. Add another 16 hours. That is about 6am we can get to Pau. We obviously will have to stop, but we also need to get to Pau early enough so that we can find the hotel, park up and eat/sleep etc. Oh bearing in mind, the Stage that day finishes in Pau, so I expect it to be heaving, even early on!

Melissa – as soon as we check in, I will probably crash out for a few hours! Or overdose on caffeine!

So by Monday, we are there in Pau. Check In. sleep (for me). Get to the finish. Annoy people (possibly).

Tuesday is the last rest day at Le Tour. Great, have a lie in! Er we have to move the car to the hotel we are staying in on Tuesday night. Then I will possibly sleep again, and blog, and take far too many pictures, and email the parents!

Wednesday’s Stage starts in Pau. I am not missing this!

Wednesday night, Thursday night and Friday night have yet to be decided. But we have a tent!

Saturday and Sunday, we are booked into a hotel in Paris. We have a choice on Saturday, catch the train to watch them finish the Time Trial in Chartres, or go to the Team Sky Fan Party (TSFP), a 15 min walk from our hotel (er, that is a guess! It might not be that far!) The TSFP have a place to watch it all on a big screen and have a party afterwards! This, technically, will be the only night I can drink!

Sunday, we will be on the Champs Elysees, at the Team Sky Fan corner (although I like all the teams! I am not just a Sky fan!) and will be watching them finish.

Currently I have been invited to 3 parties on the Sunday night!

Monday we have to leave Calais fairly early as I expect the M26 and M25 to be a nightmare!

This has been a headache trying to organise this, but I’m so looking forward to it! It WILL be amazing!

Thanks to Andy for offering us a place to pitch our tent, we might see you on the Tourmalet  yet! Thanks to the kind invites to the parties (from various people) and the sheer amount of help I have received from Twitter and Wheelsuckers!

I still have to sort out various bits and bobs – where the hell do I get breathalyser kits from? And Iestyn, my lovely brother, can I borrow a laptop?!?!

Take care and keep smiling 😛

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One week in France!

Some of our trip is sorted. I’m picking Melissa up from Paris on  Sunday 15th, and driving down towards Pau. It’s some long drive!
We have hotel rooms booked in Pau (the last one we could find on the Monday night, and one of only a couple remaining on the Tuesday). If we ever do this again, we need to book EARLY for more choice and cheaper rooms.

So thats Stage 15 (on the Monday) and 16 (on the Wednesday) sorted out.

We can see the stage finish on the Monday, have a mosey (wander) around on the rest day on the Tuesday, and see the Stage start on the Wednesday.

Wednesday night isn’t clear, or Thusday or Friday. We’ll either be sleeping in the car or in the tent!

I’ve been advised (via a friend on facebook) to go for the feedzones on at least 2 of the days for musettes and bottles.

We’ll be taking chalk! @BevSmerklo will get her hashtag (#thatmanbernie) made famous! And mine will be on the roads as #twitterarti.

Oh yeah, we are going to have some fun!

Saturday and Sunday we are staying in the same hotel in Paris, only a shortish walk to the Champes Elysses, and to the Team Sky Fan Parties.

I’ll be posting more as soon as i know the details.

If anyone else is planning doing this next year, its knackering! Can’t believe how much it takes out of me just trying to plan a route!

Keep smiling!!

🙂 🙂 😉 🙂 🙂

how my #TdF plans have changed

There was originally 2 of us going for just over 2 weeks, me and my best mate, sharing driving fuel etc. It’s a good thing we had a bit of a chat on Sunday.

I then got the feeling she wouldn’t be coming, although it’s taken until this morning to get the answer she wasn’t.

Thanks to a bit of foresight and lack of funds, I haven’t booked any hotels etc, and was already in discussion with @melissagerman (my TwitterFriend) to meet up down in Pau.

Due to this new arrangement, I might spend a couple of days at my Uncles and then pick Melissa up and drive onto Pau, where hopefully (fingers crossed) we will have been able to book a hotel just outside of Pau (Lons).

Hopefully me and Melissa can fine tune this over the next couple of weeks, and it looks like it will be awesome, especially the Team Sky Fan Party Part 1 and Part 2!

So thanks to Melissa, it’ll be great to share this with someone who can have a laugh and in all honesty knows a fair bit more than me about procycling.

Thanks also to @wheel_suckers (http://www.wheelsuckers.co.uk/) and http://road.cc/, which have both provided me with some insight into going to watch Le Tour.

Thanks also to @BevSmerklo, @CatwomanFran, Sarah Orr, Sammi Christopher and Jo Wells, all who listened to me rant after what occured on sunday.

So yeah, I’m going, meeting some of my Twitterarti friends, and it’s going to be a blast

Even if I do get home broke 😉

Now I’m smiling!!!!