Its Sunday the 12th July 2015 and were in the Pavillion Pub, having a few drinks and saying goodbye to some of our dearest friends, family and neighbours….
Today we start our “Campervan Adventure” !!
3 years since the thought “Hatched” in my brain, that Hey ! maybe there is an alternative out there to working yourself so hard that by the time you reach “Retirement age” yourr to knackered and infirm to actually enjoy it !?
Some said “Its Madness” – “He’s having a mid life crisis, “It will never work , but here we are nearly 3 months into our adventure, and we are parked in a small picnic area, next to a beautiful waterfall, 750 metres up at the west end of the Lyse fjord in Norway .. A childhood dream (one of several) either already “Ticked off” or about to be accomplished …. To be fair nearly every one before we left and everyone we have met so far on our travels, has said “Good on you” “Go For It” “Its Amazing what you are doing” “Your actually living the dream” !! Support has been fantastic and we appreciate every single comment…
Our House rented, our careers on hold (or finished ?) and 6,500 miles and 10 countries travelled… Here’s our journey so far…..
After our Tearful farewell at the Pavillion, we fuelled up our faithful Campervan, and headed North up the A1 towards “Bonny Scotland” (or Bony Scotland as Ange posted on Facebook lol)..
We felt we couldn’t explore the further reaches of Europe without first visiting the parts of our own shores, which we had yet to see..
It was bright and sunny as we headed up the Northumberland coast, windows down, sunglasses on, and the radio playing some chilled out tunes.. Excitement written all over our faces at what might lay ahead for us.. Two and a half hours to Edinburgh, which was our first planned stop, on our route.. That should get us there for about 8.30pm I thought.. We finally arrived in Edinburgh at 10.30pm having taken a short detour to explore North Berwick & Dunbar ! This was to prove the way forward on the adventure. With no particular timescales to work to, plans and routes can be changed at the sight of a place name on a map, or a picture on Google of somewhere along the way..
I had been to Dunbar as a young boy and had very vague but fond memories of the trip, so indicating right, we took our first of many diversions..
A small but pretty little town, with a quaint harbour.. We pulled the van up next to the RNLI station and got out and stood peering across the harbour, with the evening sun warming our faces.. A small grey seal popped his head up out of the water, and seemed to be welcoming us at our first port of call.. What made this seem more poignant was only a few days earlier, my Brothers and I had scattered our beloved Mums ashes into the North Sea from the rocks at St Mary’s Lighthouse, and 2 Grey seals had swam up within 20 metres of us.. It seemed very fitting to us as Mam was an avid animal lover, and it was as if they had come to welcome her into the cold but fond North Sea waters .. Mams wishes were to be scattered somewhere with a nice view and with her “Furry Friends” as she called them.. So with the seals watching on, we set our Mam and the ashes from every cat & dog she had ever cared for, off into the view we had sat at so many times on a Sunday afternoon, enjoying a 99 ice cream.. We said goodbye to her, happy that she was finally at rest..
Seeing the seal was if Mam was with us on the first leg of our journey…
We arrived in Edinburgh and settled into our first “Wild Camping spot”, a canny little cobbled street, North of George Street, one we had used for Hogmanay earlier in the year..
Starting Mileage 12,304 miles..
Day 1 done Goodnight …..