Life after work and the trips of a lifetime

"We are judged by what we finish, not by what we start." - Anonymous

Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, martini in the other, your body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming, "Woo hoo! What a ride!..attributed in this form to either Maxine Cartoon or anon

Saturday, July 17, 2010

On French soil again

Thankfully that horror journey is over..all up door to door and  with an 8 hour wait at Changi airport (I booked a room at the transit hotel and at 68 Singapore dollars it was well worth it) it was close to 40 hours.

Geneva airport has a bipolar air to it..I had to wait on the Swiss side for the hotel shuttle bus..when I go back tomorrow I will be delivered back to the Swiss side, but have then to move over to the French side to be picked up by my car lease firm so I have to do the following:  
Access to the French sector via the Check-in level.  Follow the yellow "Destination France"   signs.

In case you've not yet discoverd this..if you're in Europe for >21 days its far far better and cheaper to lease rather than rent a car.  I'm going Renault this time round but there's also Citroen and Peugeot ..motorbikes and motorhomes too.

 Its been a while since I was on French soil..apart from ever so briefly in 2008 while checking out theTrenchee d'Arenberg of Paris Roubaix fame,  I think it must be at least 10 years when, like this time round, it was for a week of exploring the alps and in particular alpe d'huez.   We stayed in a hotel, which is the reason we are now staying in apartments...French hotels are unique with  a sorta character that makes you want to avoid them. 

Today's hotel is one of the international and therefore bland Holiday Inn "airport" hotel that is so far from Geneva airport it took 20 minutes in the free shuttle bus  to get here.  Its definitely NOT French or even bidet! also no fridge but WiFi at 7 euros for 24 hr access. As hotels go its average to ok but they have gained brownie points by agreeing to stow my bike box til i return in 5 weeks time. 

One good aspect is that there is a shopping mall just a 15 min  walk away so I was able to stock up and get some exercise.  Shopping in a foreign language is always fraught with danger..I've already moaned elsewhere about how many different types of shampoos there are in faced with exactly the same choices in a language you are not now familiar with is at the least a time consuming challenge if you're not to walk away with something you really didn't want or need......

 Asian:  I got offered a seat on the inter-terminal train at Zurich by a group of Asians..was I looking old and tired or were they just being respectful of grey hair?....
French:  I got dumped by the male employee helping me at the grog shop when part of my requirements was that the bottle was a screw top since I had no cork screw.

Working girls: a couple of the camp sites during my Italian adventure were located in the industrial area and we grew accustomed to "spotting the working girls" as we approached these  sites.  The first working girl I saw..not realising what I was looking at until later...was ensconced, complete with chair and sun shade at the edge of a corn you can  perhaps imagine my thoughts yesterday on seeing 2 cars parked on the edge of a corn field  as I walked to the shopping mall ......

So tomorrow I drive to Le Bourg d'Oisans and re-commence Liz's excellent cycling adventure in europe.

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