Wednesday, 4 September 2013

The Journey

I’ve done most of these posts out of order because that is the kind of maverick I am. This one as you might have guessed is about the long awaited journey à Paris.

After watching a good hour of Storage Hunters on Dave to take our minds off the obvious we departed for sunny Liverpool to get the train down to London for the first leg of our journey. A quick dash around M&S quickly ensued and with Moroccan wraps in hand we headed to the platform with what felt like enough luggage to last me an eternity.  We surprisingly managed to find some luggage racks which had space for all of my worldly possessions, took our seats and said goodbye to Mum. Public expression of emotion quickly followed and Pip provided the ever useful Kleenex.

As the train set off we cracked open the butties and decided to watch some Black Books to raise morale. We must have looked rather bizarre to the other passengers, crying incessantly one minute and shrieking with hysterical laughter the next.

Wheeling our stuff from Euston to St Pancras was mildly back breaking but in the end uneventful. Getting the bags onto the X-ray scanners in Customs was interesting to say the least. I’m not the strongest person in the world so I had to use momentum to lift the gargantuan bags up which thankfully didn’t backfire and cause me to join them on the conveyer belt.

Waiting in the Eurostar lounge for the train to arrive I was already picking out the people I didn’t want to be stuck in a carriage with or heaven forbid sat next to. Three Americans were the first people I’d spotted who were on my list of “Worst People To Be Sat Next To”. From previous experience Americans on the Eurostar seem to cluster and talk very loudly to each other about how fabulous Europe is while the rest of the carriage is trying to block out the voice in their head saying “EUROPE ISN’T JUST ONE PLACE IT’S ALL VERY DIFFERENT YOU IMBECILES” or maybe that’s just me. My guardian angel must have been looking down on me though as they were nowhere to be seen as we got into the carriage. The woman sat next to Pip just plugged her iPod in and went to sleep. I however was not so lucky. The guy next to me kept wriggling about in his seat. Pip thought he wanted to start a conversation with me so I turned the other way and fell asleep.

There was a delay. Obviously. Only one of the tunnels had electricity so we had a 45 minute wait to be allowed through which was a blessing in disguise really because it meant I could have a bit longer using the internet on my phone before I was painfully separated from the wonder that is the World Wide Web and weird fish photos (a recent obsession). I resolved that I needed a coffee. As a French student it is in my genetic make-up to have a caffeine addiction so I journeyed to the restaurant car which was further away than I would have liked. What felt like everyone else on the train had had the same idea as me. Including the Americans who had found another kinsman to converse with. After hearing for the millionth time how they thought Britain was quaint I got to the front of the queue speaking in French so that I wasn’t associated with the Americans. It is safe to say that I made a swift exit and took Pip back a KitKat which was the best chocolate item that I could find.

The taxi to the flat was very uneventful and cheaper than I had expected which was a pleasant surprise. Now that brings me to the next instalment…the Arrival.

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