Saturday, May 2, 2009

Underwater Driving

Well, technically maybe I wasn't driving underwater but I did drive my car onto the Chunnel train on Thursday and then sat in that same car while the train engineer drove the actual train with me and my car in it across to France. And the Chunnel train does indeed run under the Channel and it's only a 30 minute ride from shore to shore. They post the 'escape route' on the wall in case you have to evacuate as you're crossing but I try really hard not to think about that.

Taking your car on the Chunnel is actually a fantastic way to get from England to France. You book your space online, show up 30 minutes before departure, drive up to the immigration window to show your passport, and then literally drive your car right onto the train. And you just sit in the car while the train crosses under the sea and you drive out of the train on the other side.'re in France. It's tres cool. My French is pretty impressive isn't it?

The really important thing to remember on this excursion is that when you exit the Chunnel train on the other side of the Channel you are in France and in France they drive ON THE RIGHT. And I'm in my British car so I'm sitting on the right hand side of the vehicle and there is a roundabout almost as soon as you come out of the train station and I have to say outloud about 100 times...GO RIGHT, GO RIGHT...LOOK LEFT, LOOK LEFT..yes, you know how to drive!

My husband had a meeting in Paris all last week so he arranged for a car to bring him out to the hotel we are in for the weekend. We are visiting the Champagne region of France with four other couples and our hotel is about an hour and a half outside of Paris as long as your driver doesn't go thru the center of Paris during Friday night rush hour and also if your driver doesn't get lost en route in which case it may take you four hours to get to that same hotel. He wasn't frustrated or anything though and if he had a blog I'm sure he wouldn't mention it at all.

This is another Bank Holiday weekend in the UK and I've said before that Bank Holidays are ideal for short breaks. I will write about our weekend once I'm back in the UK but for now let me just say that the French countryside in Springtime is almost as spectacular as the English countryside. And let me also just add that in the French countryside there is French food...and cheese...and champagne. There's an awful lot to love about the French countryside y'all.


  1. I can't wait for another trip to France. I think that would be so hard to sit on the right and drive in the right hand lane. But then I think it would be hard to drive in the left hand lane period.

  2. I could never, and I mean never, ride on a train going under the water. I hate to say it, but I would have to find a different route to get there. Enjoy your time in France.

  3. We haven't been to France through the Chunnel yet. When we went to Paris it was via the ferry in Dover to Calais. It sounds like you are having a nice short break even after the extra long trip to your hotel.

    Have fun!

  4. It's great that you get to go be with your husband in France for a few days. It all sounds wonderful! Can't wait to hear more.
    Keep us updated! :)

  5. Your trip sounds wonderful!!! We came over the water in a hovercraft when I was in Europe, but this tunnel sounds much better. I spent my weekend packing up and bringing Adelaide home from college. I am pooped, but so glad to have her home for the summer. Enjoy your last bit of Europe before you come back to the states. Love & blessings from NC!

  6. Oh what a wonderful experience you are enjoying over there! Love hearing these stories. Safe travels!!!

  7. Ha! I am laughing at you talking to yourself! I too would be having to say it every few seconds! I mean, THAT'S IMPORTANT! I would've been very nervous.s But I don't think I would ever have to worry, because you could not PAY me to go underwater. They have the Bart system up in San Francisco, and when I went to visit my niece last year, she told me we were going on it, and knew I was nervous. I was all ready to go, and she drove to the airport to pick me up instead! Whew! But I was ready!!
    What a wonderful post. I love it when you take us everywhere with you and then tell us what we are doing!
    Have a great day!