The summer of 1986 we took out on a long and winding road trip in Europe. Much more long and winding than our old and tired car was designed for. We even brought a small tent that we used on several occasions.
We started out with the ship across the ocean to Newcastle. The first day in England we spent the night in the small and very boring town of Grantham. This was the home town of Margaret Thatcher we later found out, and that certainly must have marked her for life...
After a few days on the south coast (Brighton and Weymouth) a new ferry transported us to Jersey. Very, very lovely iceland with nice beaches and marvelous food!
Another ferry took us to France where we stayed at a Chateau Camping and visited Arromanche where the allied forces landed on the D-day.
The next destination was Paris where we had planned to meet some friends for a few days. We met beneath the "Arc de Triomphe" on the same time that there was a happening of some sorts with thousands (probably) people. The stay in Paris was filled with strange experiences; The hotel was the worst that I have ever seen.. we moved out the next day, found a new hotel with a norwegian woman working in the reception; it was impossible to change money so we ended up with MacDonalds for dinner. After this we were rather exhausted, and sent the car by train to Marseilles. We took the TGV.
This is a little book that contains the whole story.
We had some days at the French Riviera where we camped some nights in Bandol and some nights in Cavalaire sur Mer. Having been very good and saved a lot of money, we wanted to treat ourselves with two nights at a hotel on the Italian side of the border. Someone had told us that everything was cheaper in Italy. This turned out very wrong for us...
We chose the wrong hotel (for us) - our old wreck (on the French side we had a punctuation and had to buy a new wheel) looked quite misplaced next to the Jaguars and Mercedeses on the parking lot. The next morning we went for a quick trip into town just to get some money, but ended up spending the whole day and a serious amount of money at a garage to fix the car (the exhaust pipe fell off..) When we came back the hotel took the rest of our money for washing a small bag of clothes.
After that we decided that the best thing to do was to drive home as fast as possible to avoid any more trouble. (It was not over - we had to drive through Switzerland and the Swiss sure knows how to suck the money out of you...) Also visited Jeanette and Roland in Weil on the way.
The next trip we took was in 1987 when we bought a charter trip for the first time (to Greece). At least we didn't have to bring the old wreck of a car. The holiday was wonderful except for the temperature that didn't drop below 40 deg C, day or night, for a week. Living in a hotel with no air conditioning forced some creative thinking to be able to sleep at night.
The also took a trip to Turkey where we visited Ephesus, an old Roman city. Great, but hot experience.