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Filip's Travel log

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Hi and welcome to my travel-page. Are you up for some exciting stories? Then you are at the right address!!

Log entries 81 - 90 of 156 Page: 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14

Dec 18, 2004 07:00 PM Xmas Shopping

Next day we woke up at about 8hours. Even though it was sunday, the stores would be open, because it was almost Christmas. Therefore we wanted to be in the shoppingstreet around 9 am.
Once we got there...there was nobody in the streets.We didn't understand at first, but after seen a couple of stores opening hours, it got all clear. They went open on we were way too early. Anyways, we did some starbucks and walked around, doing some windowshopping and bought some souvenirs from the shops which were already open.
On noon you could walk on heads. It was unbelievable how many people were down the streets suddenly. But hey, we had to do some shopping, so we went from here to there.
We got to visit the one and only Apple store in Europe, a mark of computers which I just adore. So it meant a lot to me.
At the end of the day, after having found everything we needed, doing some serious shopping in one of the many virgin megastores and dragging everything around, we went back to the camper.
At 22hours we drove through the open battle trees and drove all the way to Dover to sleep there during the night.

Dec 17, 2004 07:00 PM London Parking

Yes, we finally made it, we finished of everything we wanted to finish of and got quite tired. We decided to quit the work at England and do some Christmasshopping in London, before we would leave the island.
So we drove to London and tried to find a parking place which was kinda secure (don't like to leave the camper behind without any protection).
But we found ourselves almost driving down the citycenter, before we actually realised that there wasn't much of a safe parking. So we turned back and tried to reach a parking of an airfield, from which we would take the bus or so, towards the center.
We eventually found a place (in Woolwich), but it had battle trees, so it would cost us money. We decided to park there and ask inside if we could stay there overnight. The person who I was talking too let me know that the battle trees opened during the night :o)
This meant good news, because if they did, we wouldn't have to pay 10 pounds for 5+ hours of staying, but the simple amount of 0 pounds!!
So, we left for London (taking the bus to the millenium village and than the subway to some place in the center of London).
London is a nice city, though it is very big, it still has something "rustique". After doing some sightseeing of the Tower Bridge and some other bridges and monuments, we got ourselves a map of the city and went back to Woolwich. We had something to eat, watched TV and waited till 22hours. The battle trees opened up and we were glad...this was good news for tomorrow.

Dec 12, 2004 07:00 PM Showeeeeeeeeeeer

We did it! We got 450 pounds from 5 different cash points and finally could start a better life. First thing we did was going to the supermarket buying quite a lot of food and things. The day after we decided to go to a Bed & Breakfast or camping where we finally would be able to take a good long shower.
We have checked out a couple of campings but they were either closed or there wasn't anyone around to check in. So we drove on and eventually found a small inn, which was more of a bar than a hotel. We asked if they still had rooms, but eventually they didn't. BUT, the woman was very friendly and asked us if we wanted to have some free BBQ they were throwing. We didn't even hesitate :o)
She was also friendly enough to tell us that there was another hotel close to her place where we might get a room for the night.
And we did!
It was nice and clean and after washing some clothes and taking the deserved long shower I felt really clean. My hair was finally soft in stead of sticky. Awsome feeling... :o)

Dec 10, 2004 07:00 PM More accidents?

In the night of the 11th december, we were standing on a parking, somewhere close to the village of Bourne. We were watching a movie when suddenly an ambulance with flashing lights passed and stopped not far from us.
It stayed there and even a police car stopped.
When I got out to take a pee, I saw a funeral-car pass by. It had been standing still for a while and now drove off. This was a very bad sign...
We never got closer or went to ask information about it, but it did shock me. I've been thinking about it for a couple of days now and it keeps appearing in my head...

Dec 08, 2004 07:00 PM Tiredness kills

Another couple of days passed and a lot of things happened. We had been working for over two weeks without any day of. We (mostly me) were getting tired. Not that we didn't have enough sleep, we just started to lose our focus on our job. Both of us has had to brake very hard a couple of times already and we started to make more and more mistakes. The routine got to us and we needed to change that. We had been talking about a day off, but would need to be in the neighbourhood of a city, so we could do some sightseeing.
One day I was driving and had to reverse because a car in front of me did so too. It wasn't a problem for me, because I couldn't see any vehicles in my mirrors. Bang...
Apparently a motorcycle was standing in the middle of my rear, hence in my blind corner. It wasn't even visible in the rear camera's, meaning he it was standing very close to our camper.
Anyway, our bumper was broken in the middle, but not that worse actually. It wouldn't make any difference in driving, so we didn't really bother about it. The motorcycle itself was only broken on the front shelve which keeps splashing water and dirt away from the driver.
After filling in the papers, we continued driving. My day was ruined, so I wanted to drive to the nearest city (Lincoln) and stay there to take the next day off.
When we almost got to Lincoln, we suddenly saw a couple of Alpha Jets in formation doing acrobatics, right above our heads. This was THE oppertunity to go and see it. So turned into the first small lane and it appeared to be going right behind the airfield. The sigfhts were awsome and the acrobatics terrific. Of course the batteries of my digital camera were empty, so I couldn't take any pictures. Therefore we parked the camper this way that we could take pictures when the Alpha Jets passed over our heads. Handy, having a camper with 6 cams on it ;o) I'll put some pictures of it online.

Dec 02, 2004 07:00 PM No reason for panic

As you might recon, because we drive all day, we have to go to gas stations a lot. And this costs loads and loads of money. Now, when we were in Holland, there wasn't any problem for that, because we could pay with our DKV card (as I already mentioned in another story), but here in England, it just isn't known. So we have to pay everything by ourselves. This means that we use up to 80 pounds each two days, just for some diesel. Now, to be honest, I didn't had any money on my card anymore, so we had to use Wouters bankaccount. This went well, till a sudden moment that his bankcard also didn't want to lent any money anymore. We first didn't understand, but after a few calls it got clear to us that it still was a youngster account and you couldn't get more than 250 euro's a week from it. This was a pain in the ass, because of the diesel, we needed much more.
So day after day our money got less and less and we started to call Tele Atlas, to ask us to pay the things they still had to pay us. Because they were behind on schedule they hadn't done it, but after explaining the situation, they'd done it immediately. Next day, there still wasn't any money on my account. The day after...still none.
It came down to the moment we didn't had any more money left and needed fuel because our tank was getting empty.
So I rang my mother to ask her if she was willing to put 250 euro's on my account, so I would be able to get money from a cash point and pay for the fuel. Wouter was still unavailable to get any money from his account.
My mother did and so we went to the first cash point we could find and I put in my card.
It swallowed it...
I couldn't get it back and the company who owned the cards said there was nothing wrong and theyd' had to handle it with my bank.
So I called my parents again to ask them to call card stop (because I forgot the number). They called and my card got blocked immediatly, AND they would even send a new one within 5 days to my bank. Cool huh.
But the story didn't end here. I tried to put new money on my cellphone card. In Belgium there's a system that allows you to put money back on your card, even when you don't have any money left on it. Very handy when there's no bank or store in the neighbourhood to buy a credit card for your cell phone. Buuuut...because my bank card was blocked, the service was turned down and so I couldn't even refill my cell phone credit.
So I called home again and asked them if theyd' wanted to go over to my cell phone store and ask to re-activate the service... It wasn't possible without a bank card...
But, by the end of the day, Wouter could get back money from a cash point, my parents had put new credit on my cell phone so I could go on for another couple of days and we got fuel. reason for panic. :o)

Nov 29, 2004 07:00 PM Calendar Gals

We had been looking for campings the last few days, but nothing appeared to be open. Understandable of course...this isn't the season in which people will be going sitting on campings. Anyhow, after a short miner dispute with Wouter, we finally decided to do a Bed & Breakfast. Mostly because of the shower and an English breakfast.
We found a very neat one, down in Lowestoft. Everything was there and though it was all very very clean, it was English and old looking. But then again, it had it charmes.
After we got into the room and installed, we went back into the town to have some typical Fish and Chips (man that wasn't good in any way...). And after this dinner, we decided to go and see the new release of a Pixar movie: The incredibles.
A great movie, as every other Pixar movie!! The theather was a very old building which was a bit renovated, but I believe the chairs were still the they smelled bad.
The day after we both stood up, took a well deserved shower and went to get our English breakfast.
That, ladies and gentlemen, is something I would be able to have every day!! It's a good start of the day, I promise you that.
In the hall of the B&B house, there were all articles pinned on the wall, about calendar girls. So I asked the woman who was serving us if she was one of the original ones. It appeared that some women of Lowestoft also had been making a calendar for a good cause, but that they copied the idea from the other group of woman who had done this. These women came to the idea of making a nude calendar of thereselves and selling it for a good cause. The women where all at least in there fourties. It got global recognition and there's even been a movie about it.
Of course we bought one :o)

Nov 22, 2004 07:00 PM Go Le Shuttle

I will be staying in a lot of contact with Karen and we both didn't know what to make of this situation, but I tried to calm her and said we had to wait till I came back before deciding anything.
We drove to the train thing. During the ride we had to chose whether we were tourists (for campers and cars and stuff) or trucks (for professional people). We doubdet what too chose but took the tourist lane. When we came to the place to pay, we asked if we could pay with a DKV card. It's a truckerscard for tanking and shopping and things like traines for instance.
We couldn't pay with it, but they gave us a very detailed map of how to get to the other station (the trucker station). So we got there, paid, passed a couple of stops where they checked if we had any drugs, what our car did and everything. Eventually we drove to a stop where they didn't want to let us pass. A man came besides us and asked us why we hadn't stopped at a certain gate. We probably hadn't understand the lady, but anyway, he told us how to drive to a weightbridge. He checked some other things and eventually we could pass the stop and drive onto the train.
The system is really nice arranged. For instance, they asked us if we were new to taking the train. We told yes and got a white sticker on the windscreen with a large N on it. This way people constantly guided us where to go. Or when we drove onto the train, a bus stopped right next to us. After having picked up all the truckers, the bus rove towards the first wagon of the train. A normal wagon where we all could sit and have a breakfast if we wanted.
When we arrived in England, we got back into a bus and drove towards the end of the train. Apparently we had taken the wrong train and now we drove all the way to the end, while we had to be in the beginning of the train...
We got out and ran our ass off towards our car. The biggest reason why we had to be fast is because everyone had to wait for us, because all the trucks were standing bhind eachother on the train...
But...even if we did make 3 big mistakes, we still got into England without any problem!! And now...leftside driving :o)

Nov 21, 2004 07:00 PM England here we come

We finished off everything and got ready to leave for England.
After 200m of driving we pulled over and parked the car. Before leaving I wanted to meet up with a girl who became a very close friend of mine during the last week. Last day we even talked about very strong feelings for eachother. We both didn't want to fall in love, because we all had a busy life and shouldn't have the time to work a relationship.
But we met up and after I showed her the camper, We grabbed eachother and started hugging and even kissing. We couldn't help it but were both in love. What a strange day...
We eventually left for Calais and slept on a parking close to the train under the canal.

Nov 21, 2004 07:00 PM Acceptance testing

Today we had to go to Tele Atlas and do some quality acceptance tests with a couple of brand new campers. They all are the same as the one we used accept that they don't have adds on it yet and still are as white as snow.
The tests went smooth...till a moment I drove against a wrong parked car. The car had nothing, but the camper had a big scratch on the side and some small parts were bend or broken...shit, that this had to happen. I knew it was too small...
Anyways, they told me not to worry about it, they'd arrange it.

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