Just arrived at the rally, a 1959 ES175.
The next day I hit the autoroutes again and was soon in France. I turned off near Cambrai heading south through Arras onto smaller roads eventually stopping at the memorial to World War I Australian soldiers at the village of Pozieres . The memorial adjoins the road and the Australian flag flying on a big flagpole was very noticeable to passing traffic. I rode east through attractive countryside through to the coastal town of Berck, which was bumper to bumper with French holidaymakers. Then north stopping for the night at the Hotel Le Vauban in the town of Montreuil. Cost was 47Euros (AU$80) for a double room with breakfast in a two storied 19th century building overlooking the town square.
It was Saturday night and the locals of all ages were out in the square eating from food stalls at picnic benches, raffling prizes of local produce and listening to live music. Leaving early the next day I was amazed by the marvellous old buildings of all shapes and sizes close together around the northern exit, more than a few had unmistakeable bullet holes marks on them. Winding up and down and around the twisty cobblestoned road for a kilometre there were no modern buildings to be seen.
I enjoyed a nice ride through early morning fog, again taking a zig-zag route to avoid large roads. After 90 minutes I linked up with the A16 autoroute to Calais and arrived at the crowded terminal in time for the noon ferry to Dover. I had to join the queue of non-EU vehicles and had my documents thoroughly checked out. I also had to answer some detailed questions about my itinerary in the UK. The 75 minute trip in the inverted 20 storey building that doubled as a sailing vessel cost 50 pounds (AU$124) . It was my ninth ferry ride of the trip. I was now an informed ferry consumer.
A few hours later I was negotiating the London A25 ring road system and telling myself that going via London was the quickest way to Felixstowe. It was hard work made harder because I was riding on the left again in heavy traffic , traffic with so many trucks in places they obscured the already inadequate road signs, especially the overhead ones at big junctions. Then there was the numerous road works and detours. The construction works on the roads leading onto the Dartford Tunnel under the Thames filled an entire wide valley. I eventually escaped from London and rode the 60 English miles to Felixstowe on the A12 and A14.
I spent another night at the Grafton Guest House and the next day, a Monday, thoroughly cleaned the MZ and left it with the staff at Get Routed agent’s depot for the 43 day voyage home . I rode through seven countries , covered 3,600km in a month, amazingly without falling off or even getting very wet.
Unleaded petrol prices per litre June 2006 in Australian
$’s in the countries visited ;
Michael's Skorpion in profile, Denmark.
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A big thank you to Michael for allowing me to Blog this for him.