August 1st 2019
For some bizarre reason we had it in our mind that we were due to leave the French house on a Thursday and arrive back in England Friday, however I’d left the ferry ticket on the desk in the house and on Monday Michelle looked at it and realised we had got the days and dates misaligned, we were due to sail Thursday morning.
This meant we had a day less than we thought and we had to move ourselves to finish some tasks part done, leave the house ready for the next trip, get to the bank and fill up with fuel. We had booked Layla into the vets for 9 am Wednesday morning for her pet passport medical, so as soon as that was done we were off and driving north. I then realised that there needs to be 24 hours between the treatment and being able to board the ferry, the time on the passport was 8.55 and the ferry left at 9.15am. Mmm!
We quickly settled into travel mode, stopping at regular intervals for a coffee break and to allow Layla to stretch her legs, water the grass etc. We were making good time and stopped at a motorway picnic area (not a busy services) and had our packed lunch.
When we eventually leave the motorway system we drive through Normandy on our way to Le Havre, normally everything passes us by in a blur as we are in a rush to either get to the house or the port. However on this journey we had plenty of time to stop and explore so our first stop was at Gacé, we have thought of doing this before as it is in the motorhome books as a place you can stop over for the night free. The motorhome aire was in front of the Marie, Town Hall, and very picturesque, within 100m there are cafe/ bar/restaurants a pizza restaurant and a supermarket.
A short drive further on is a town called LIVAROT, the name always makes me smile as it seems a suitable place for heavy drinkers to live!
We stopped here and had a walk around the town, the area is part of the Camembert cheese making, so when I saw some for sale, in its traditional round box, in a shop window along with Calvados I went in to purchase some, however I was somewhat bemused when the assistant told me their boxes didn’t contain cheese but chocolate, how bizarre, I didn’t buy any.
The rest of the journey to our hotel in Le Havre went smoothly and we spent a relaxing evening both reading and taking Layla for a walk.
This morning it was with some slight trepidation that we made the 1km drive to the port arriving at 8.15 am concerned that we might get some officious person checking us in who would notice that Layla’s passport time had another 40 minutes to run before it was legal, thankfully the pleasant young lady booking us in made no comment and it was with a sigh of relief that we passed through passport control onto the dock and eventually the ferry. I’m currently sitting in our cabin with the sun shining through the window a calm sea outside, dreaming of our next trip.