Monday 28 December 2015

Back in Blighty

France and UK, 6th – 21st December 2015

We have just completed a two week trip back to the UK, which we did to fit around my PhD graduation ceremony which I’d deferred from the summer when we were down in Greece, and meant we could see family approximately midway through our trip after over seven months away. We had a busy time getting jobs done and stayed a few days longer than originally planned to be able to fit in medical appointments for injections so that we’re prepared for if we decide to go over to Morocco next year. A positive side effect was it meant we avoided the premium rate ferry crossings during the busy weekend before Christmas.

Sunday 27 December 2015

Making Our Way Back to the UK

Spain and France, 1st – 5th December 2015

This post is a couple of weeks behind after I didn’t get it finished while on the ferry back to England due to our crossing being in terrible sea conditions during Storm Desmond; more on that in the next post. Back in the UK we didn’t stop getting on with working through our list of jobs and had my PhD graduation to attend, so we’re catching up to resume normal service again now we’re back on the road.

Back to where we left off...With being in northern Spain we’d been thinking we would get a ferry from Bilbao or Santander to Portsmouth for the convenience, less driving and less mileage covered, but in the end decided we couldn’t face paying the extra cost. I set up a spreadsheet to calculate the fuel and ferry costs for the alternative routes, which showed that even with the extra fuel to travel 700-odd more miles up through France it was projecting the cost to be basically £200 less to go via Dover or Dunkirk. Putting it another way it would’ve cost over twice as much, and it would have used up one week’s worth of our budget each way, which realistically should cover two weeks living costs down in Portugal in winter. So by doing the Dover route both ways will effectively mean we can afford an extra two weeks to a month’s travel! Additionally we’d only be losing about a day in extra travelling, aiming to get across France in two days. This therefore is the option we went with, so the majority of this five day period was spent travelling north.

Wednesday 2 December 2015

In and Around A Coruña

Spain, 27th – 30th November 2015

When we woke up on Friday at our clifftop spot at Praia de Os Castros, we found ourselves looking out on a different landscape to our arrival.  Gone were the huge waves assaulting the coastline beneath us, and in its place, a beach.  All of a sudden the fact that the place was called Praia made a little more sense.  A couple of brave locals attempted a morning swim while the tide was out, but we didn’t quite find the motivation to get out there and join them; whilst the skies were holding off from raining for the first time in a while, the sun was still nowhere in sight and jumping in the sea doesn’t quite have the same appeal when the skies are dim.