Manual Cars and Sat Nav deviations
We survived our first day with a few 'tense' moments, but laughed a lot! Mastering a manual car (why don't they have automatics as rentals?) and the thick volume of traffic was a little white knuckle at times with me resisting the need to yell "CLUTCH" at every moment!
We had programmed our trusty Sat Nav with GLASGOW as the destination, 10 minutes of 'downloading' later we were off. Two hours later we had been diligently following all her directions to the letter of the law and had an amazing tour of the back streets of Hayes, Hillingdon and nearly Harlow (London suburbia). Finally we hit familiar territory into Buckinghamshire and the Chalfonts and had the realisation it was going to take us approximately 5 days to reach Glasgow given the Sat Nav 'scenic' route through the back streets of northern London.
We pulled over at Aylesbury (famous for it's white ducks) brought for a coffee (6 pounds) and re-programmed the Sat Nav, this time to INCLUDE Motorways. We realised by this point that options for the route planner to include Motorway as opposed to avoiding them had not been activated!
Given this was an area where I grew up as a child, I was thrilled that we were able to pass through scenic and rural areas of great familiarity. But the gnashing of teeth from the driver was not going to be enjoyable, so we eventually ended up with a faster route finally getting onto the motorway and headed North.
We eventually spotted the first of the wind turbines and knew we were safely in the North of the country. We drove until 6pm when we both had more than enough for the day (*CLUTCH!*) and stopped at the next Service area on the motorway and delightedly found a Ramada Inn with the last room available. This was closely followed by visiting the Waitrose next door, getting ourselves and a reasonable red wine for 6 pounds (or 2 for 10 pounds! Bargain!) .... some cheese, olives and crusty bread and we retired to the room to lie horizontal after a very long day of travelling.
Bye for now, we will pick back up on the blog once we reach Scotland.
Ann is one half of Point Bush Wines, alongside husband Gary. A lover of tropical temperatures, a permanent British expat since the age of 18, and happiest when discovering local history and culture wherever she goes.
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