The last few weeks have been a flurry of activity – sorting out the house for renting, packing our panniers and Verity finishing work. It has been a very surreal time, particularly as we are not running away but simply craving adventure. If it had been a case of pure escapism then leaving our house and Verity leaving her job would have been much easier.
That said, with only three days in the saddle, life back home already feels like a lifetime ago.
We had a fantastic first day from Kent to Folkestone, with a pelaton of six riders made up of friends and family. After our goodbyes, we set up camp in Folkestone Rugby Club on the balcony of the clubhouse! We had definitely asked the right person at FRFC if we could camp – Simon was the club chairman and also a teacher of law who was a keen cyclist!
Up early, we were soon aboard the Le Shuttle and whizzing through the Eurotunnel into France. After a quick croissant we were on the bikes and into the French countryside.
We were planning on following EV5 (Eurovelos being a European wide cycle route network). However very poor signposting meant to took a few detours – crossing farmland and bumping along gravel tracks! We were happy to make it to our campsite just outside Renescure with 75km under our belts, topped off with a free beer from the campsite owner to celebrate the first continental day of our adventure.
The next day we headed to Lens – 80km east. Some glorious sunshine and smooth canal paths meant we were soon munching the miles.
As Verity has only taken two days holiday since January, we are taking a rest day in Lens to ease ourselves into the cycling, catch up on a few admin jobs we didn’t manage to tick off before leaving and plan the route for the next few days. Although we did spy a dry ski slope on the approach to into town..!