Off the grid
So we are sitting in a rather odd pub in Scotland next to Loch Ness at the moment. Loch Ness, not the place we actually planned on visiting but my (Milene’s) addiction for myths and legends won. I’ve at least got to try to see Nessy and I believe I will.
Anyway, one week ago we started our journey from Hull, or actually from Europoort. But like most boattrips there is not much to say about that trip. So we start from Hull. After 15 roundabouts in 30 minutes we decided to count them. We are now at 53 roundabouts, that’s about 49 roundabouts in England and 4 in Scotland. So far. The van, further on called: Miss T., accepted driving on the left side very easily. Even the little English roads over hills and through the countryside were a blast for her. And for us. Finally I could look over the little English hedges and stone walls and see the beautiful English country side from the car.
We drove through the beautiful Yorkshire Dales where it seems time stood still. Here, sheep rule the road, rainy clouds the air and men are still slaves to the earth. However, not only time stood still here, Miss T. also decided it was time we paid here a little more attention than the English countryside. She stopped. At the top of a hill and just around a corner so the English drivers were tested in their breaking skills. Way to go Miss T.
Checking the engine, nothing wrong. The accu, nothing wrong. Time to call the ANWB (Dutch AA). No help from our fellow citizens. While Yuri was calling the AA. English are politer anyway, a police officer stopped. She was about to prove that earlier politeness statement. Not long after she arrived she decided to help out. “The place is too dangerous to not help you out”. She parked her car behind Miss T and put herself in front of Miss T to tell drivers to slow down. Within 10 minutes a colleague arrived who put her car in front of Miss T. Though I’m sure Miss T got more attention than she thought she would have, she still didn’t give an inch. Only the hazard lights worked. Yep, she is that save. The AA couldn’t help us but luckily the English police could. The two ladies made sure fellow car drives were slowing down when another police office arrived on the scene. Now people in the passing cars looked a little suspicious in our direction. Johnny, the third policeman, thought it was a bit funny and easy to tow us away as well. Easy said and well, easy done. We first had to turn Miss T. Police officer Johnny and I pushed the car while Yuri was turning the steering wheel. Part 1 went well. Miss T stood behind the police car. Towing rope was in place and the towing to the village could start. Johnny had never towed a car and we had never been towed away by a police car. Challenge accepted. All went well, though it was a bit exciting. In the end we thanked Johnny for his wonderful help and the other police officers as well.
I decided to call my father. Cause whatever happens my parents know what to do. This time was no different. My father needed only a second to know what was wrong. So withing 2 minutes we fixed Miss T and could continue our road to grandma. All the fuzz for nothing but hadn’t Miss T stopped we wouldn’t meet these wonderful police officers. Thanks to Yorkshire Dale police!
So our trip continued to grandma. A lovely 92 year old lady living on her own in the amazing lake district. She doesn’t like growing older but if you want to get old she knows how. She still drives her car, up to 7 years ago she rang the bells of the old church in town and she drives neighbours around for getting grocery or just getting from A to B. She still cooks on her own, cleans here house on her own and even knows how to use an iPad! We had a lovely meal and talk with her before we continued our road to camp somewhere in the lake district.
Not only did Miss T broke down, for a while. My phone broke down forever. While paying a visit to the church grandma rang the bell for many years I dropped my phone on those wonderfully laid little stones. Well you might imagine how my screen looks like now: like a thousands stars in a black dark night. No phone, no connection, no nothing. So I’ll be off technology for a while. Ok until now as I’m writing this on my iPad but for a week I really was off the grid.
Though I was in technological ways off the grid we weren’t really totally off the grid yet. We decided to stay on a nice campsite for the first night near Hawkshead. We parked Miss T on a beautiful spot overlooking the valley with cows and sheep and decided to watch the England match in the local pub: The Red Lion (how original). As you might know England lost. A bloke next to me didn’t really mind. He did mind about Brexit. He voted to leave the European Union and thinks the Dutch need to do the same. He is old and told me he fought against the Germans together with the Canadians. In the Netherlands. “The European Union does nothing but destroying us, you too”. We finished our Guinness and decided to Brexit for the night. But not before mister gave me a hand kiss. And so day one came to an end.
Don’t worry not all our days were this exciting. Though I think about it, they might have been, in a different way. Well, the sun is shining now and when the sun shines in Scotland you go out, barbecue, walk, sunbath. Oh about that. I got sunburned! In Scotland! That should be a first 😉 Time for a delicious stew, stout and sun. Bye.