Friday, February 01, 2008

Les Alpes or Bust

The hour is nigh.

At the wee hours of the morning I shall be loading the Alvis on to the boat train for Calais.

The horror of crossing the continent awaits.

Not only have I got the terrors of motorway services plumbing as they call it (Small-bore I call it) but the attentions of an over eager Gendarmerie hell bent on re-living De-Gaule's permanent denial of the Anglo-Saxon saviour hood of their nation - by trying to nab me for not obeying traffic laws more suited to a gauloise smoking peasant in a 2CV, than a lantern jawed chap about the continent in his souped-up motor.

How to speed my journey - or rather - how to minimise the horrors of having to stop?

The answer is to minimise wasted time mucking aorund at stops.

I have taken cues from my flying. In soaring, one is expected to endure 7+ hours solo in a cockpit whilst zippng about the clouds in the horsa.
Now, I reckon I will get about 7 hours endurance from a tank of fuel. I have a flask for weapons-grade coffee, and a non carb snack dispenser. But what if nature calls?

It works for pilots. It shall work for me.

I shall spare you the true horrors. Suffice to say, it is possible to have a widdle while flying a 'plane, it is therefore possible to have a safe, dry widdle when driving.

I will leave your imagination to work out the technicalities - but us glider pilots know how. Just as well I'm driving alone.

Still - I shall have 16 CDs of 'HMS Surprise' to listen to, a flask of coffee to consume and a tub of Foie-Gras to munch on. (Constipation under these circumstances is clearly to be applauded)
I even have a hundred old francs in gold, three pairs of silk stockings, a beret and a phrase book; lest I have to bail out somewhere over the Massif Centrale and make contact with the resistance.
Wish me luck, chaps. I shall let you know when I have arrived, buried my kit and started to shin up Schloss Adler.

PS: 'scuse typos. Spellcheck is down and it's nearly five.

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