The very first thing you should know is that I strongly recommend this trip and this travel agency which I took and travel with this summer holidays, Europe unplugged and Topdeck. Don’t be shy to at least take a look, click here (the itinerary has already changed a lot bit).
Second thing, it’s quite a common wish that we can keep the good and vivid memories through writing dairy, otherwise we easily failed the mission. I am just doing that.
It’s all begin at July 17th, 2014. We got to our meet point at Clink 78 Hostel in London very early. Simply find our tour guide and checked in, then sit on the steps before the hotel to wait the coach coming. Lena said she preferred a male tour guide, compared to a female one she had met, because he was more enthusiastic and had a loud voice. Things always fail to meet our expectation, our tour guide is an Italian named Catherina, usually we call her Cate. Lena confirmed her speculation since she doesn’t used to her accent.
The other thing I remember was a man called Ryan, I didn’t know his name at that point. A beggar asked money for him, and I think he used some dirty words to drive him away. The beggar “politely” replied, “Thank you and fuck you too”. That’s very interesting, because I never seen such thing before.
We arrived Dover at about noon, got our passport stamped and ready to take the ferry. We put our luggage one a trolley and suppose to take them back when we get to the other side of the channel. Lena seemed anxious to leave our stuff in such a unsafe way.
Dover is a beautiful place. It’s famous for its white cliffs, but I am sure it would be more beautiful from another perspective when we take the ferry back. Actually, I’m quite looking forward to that.
The ferry is very luxurious, but I forgot her name. In it, you can almost find everything you want. Lena spent much time on inspecting everything in the shop to make sure which ones to purchase on our way back. It’s inevitable. Because we all had to prepare some presents for our friends. But still I felt a little boring, I know I would rather stay on the top board than to be refrained in the small shop. So I bought two bars of chocolate to cheer myself up.
The voyage was rather short, I didn’t realize the time escape so quickly. We jumped off the board and stand still to see where our luggage be dragged to. Before the trolley arrived, our team members had plenty of time to know each others’ names and exchange ideas. I have never been good at talking. So it’s always Lena to break the ice. This time we knew Cameron and Julia, who comes from Australia. And thank them, I got some new knowledge that New Zealander gets the nickname kiwi, but it’s not because of the kiwi fruit which is also famous, but a kind of lovely and also flightless native bird.
It was very hot that day, and we waited a long time to get our luggage back. But now it turned out that we had to wait for our coach in a custom building. And our group randomly chose a place and sat on the ground, some began to sleep, some began to chat. This time, we got the name of a girl from Uganda who is a student. And we knew that not everyone in this tour has the same itinerary, some got fewer days than we did.
The coach found us finally, and now we acknowledged our “chauffeur”, a proud Irish, Sean. I have to admit I had a great difficulty to recognize those word came from his mouth, they didn’t sound like English very much. And we also met our on-road-chef, Tobin, a former DJ. We found that out later, and we all puzzled why he had quit such a cool job.
The scenes were so pleasant, I saw a lot of signs indicates that there are some deer nearby. OMG, you should know I am a crazy animal-lover. But I didn’t have enough luck to see one on that day.
I didn’t remember what happened on coach, but I did take a picture of the lovely “What’s on” sheet which Cate draws every time on our way to a new place. Apparently I cannot compete with her for tour guide on this aspect.
Then we were divided into two groups, each had its mission. I was in the group manage to set up the cooking tent while Lena’s job was to do our own tent. I have never done that before, even set up a net troubles me so much. But Tobin showed us how to do it properly, and it turned out to be such a piece of cake.
And our own tent was not so difficult too. But Lena is a perfectionist, she wants everything to be perfectly well if not awesome. She kept asking Cameron, Tim and anyone within her grasp if our tent got anything wrong.
The first time I laid on the air mattress and took a rest under the tent build by ourselves was so wonderful.
That night we took the coach for a “Night Light Tour” around downtown area of Pairs! We passed the Louvre, some square which seemed holding a live concert, a golden roof palace (King Louis IV or VI), Napaleon’s Tomb, Military School and Eiffel Tower, of course; on our way back we drove along the River Seine. We learnt that the center of Pairs originate from that small island really. We saw the old city hall and old royal palace (used as prison later) stand on that island which have several bridges to connect the mainland. One of the bridge is full of locks which we know as love bridge. It’s still arguable which one is the original, but it’s may not a good idea. Just couple weeks ago one bridge was collapse because it cannot bear the weight of so many locks. So sad to know that. And I stubbornly hold the idea that those who want show the world of their love usually break up in the end. The thing is if you are confident of your significant other, why bother?
One thing really interesting happened on this tour. Cate cannot stand for the young fellows interrupt her speaking. It makes some sense, I do understand some people cannot keep the speech if he/she receives any disturb. Sean also offered the help to hush the audience. But as a tour guide, one should certainly know emotions would be better keep at bay, otherwise you ruin the tour. Some boys are naughty, but still there are quite a few who want to enjoy the introductions of the city. Poor Cate, so easy to jump into temper though in a very quiet way. Anyway, for me it’s such a cute disposition.
The first night was too exciting for sleep, but we all tired. Some young fellows were so energetic, they stayed up late, talking, drinking, laughing. It’s wonderful to be young which I think me and Lena are still in that category..