Wednesday 26 August 2015

Dover to Munich. Ypres

OK,  I admit to being a dork.  I've been trying to figure out how "leper"  becomes "Ypres", totally not getting that it was actually "Ieper", which,  admittedly,  looks exactly the same in quite a few fonts.  I still can't pronounce it properly and completely get why the British called it "Wipers". Honestly.  Foreign people with their silly foreign names. It always gets me going across western Belgium how serene and completely ordinary it looks.  It is very hard to imagine millions of people dying in a quagmire and the little towns (now complete with plenty of places to buy Miele ovens and Audis) pulverised to dust. I went to the Last Post (when the woman at the B&B mentioned the Last Post being at 8 I somehow thought she was talking about,  you know,  the last post, which I thought was an odd thing to say.  God I'm terrible.  Luckily I didn't say anything.  Anyway,  the solemn occasion of the bugler playing was somewhat lessened by the throng of tourists with bleeping cameras on selfie sticks. Wow,  that almost as reverent as starting and ending the two minute silence with the fire alarm at work.  So,  yeah.  I was supposed to start yesterday,  but, being me,  I put everything off until the last minute.  It got late,  I got stressed and the weather was complete shit. I decided to start today instead from Dover. Up at 530 for the 10am ferry,  which didn't leave until 1130. Apparently the PA was broken.  Really. This after standing outside in the rain,  waiting to board,  for 40 minutes.  Nice.  Thank you,  DFDS,  service with a smile. I did get to have impure thoughts about the single and only attractive person on the whole ship,  fortunately decked out in motorcycle leather,  so that almost made up for it.  Almost.  The rest I'm pretty sure share most of their chromosomes.  Not a pretty sight. Landing in Dunkirk is a bit like landing in Mordor,  a scrubby,  sandy industrial area with the occasional flame shooting out of a tower.  Very welcoming on a bike.  However,  even this Mad Max countryside has better roads and less trash than England. How sad.  Bike lanes too.  It all gets a bit more cosy feeling crossing into Belgium.  More trees on the roads,  more trees,  a lot more streets lights.  Also a lot more concrete or cobbled roads.  Bad Belgium,  bad! Anyway,  must get to bed so I'm not a dribbling wreck tomorrow...

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