A year ago today, 19th June 2019, we arrived at Cleveland Motorhomes in Darlington and were handed the keys to Nortia. We started our trip with a little get-to-know-you adventure driving south, slowly before heading to Europe.
We visited Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Austria, Slovenia, Croatia, Italy, France, Monaco, England, Scotland, Wales, Spain, Portugal and Gibraltar. All in covering 25,000 miles in nine months, then Lockdown hit and our plans for the next three months were changed in an evening.
Lockdown began for us in Sussex, when Boris said all unnecessary travel was prohibited and only essential businesses should remain open. The campsite we were on, was closing. We headed off home and parked up outside, plugged into the electric, logged onto the WiFi and filled up with water. Here, we dutifully stayed parked up, until we were allowed to go out for day trips in June. On our first trip, we had to check the tyre pressures and dust off the cobwebs, which were everywhere – wheels, wing mirrors, bike rack. We had been stationary for so long, that driving was a new experience and we actually forgot about the cruise control and sixth gear! We headed to the beach, hoping to show Reg the sea, but so had the rest of the county, so we headed up into the South Downs National Park instead.
Our views, whilst away, have been magnificent, the fjords in Norway, mountains in the Dolomites, the Alps in France, marinas in many countries, sea views and green fields. We’ve stayed in towns and in isolated areas, with many people and on our own. Now our view for the last three months has been a fence and garage doors!
During Lockdown, we’ve managed to stay sane, trained a puppy, been in good health and we’re still talking – there have been moments, but with the three of us in a 7.4 metre long motorhome, you’d expect some fireworks.
Our plans had been to travel up to Wales and over to Ireland (perhaps, to the Isle of Man), on to Scotland and the Hebrides (Inner and Outer), but they are on hold for the time being.
Life is slowly beginning to get back to normal, non-essential shops are allowed to open and campsites are beginning to get ready to open on 4th July, still no word about pubs, restaurants or hotels.
Now our dilemma, Etrusco need to sell our motorhome – our year has come to an end, but we have been offered first refusal, we’re just waiting for a price. We’ve started looking at the market, to see what we can afford but, we need to move on if campsites open.
Our dilemma is two-fold – without a price for the Motorhome, we don’t know where to book!
- If we have to return Nortia, we need to plan to head north and sort out a plan to return home to start again; or
- If we can buy Nortia, we can start to book our next trip, into England and see more sights, Wales looks like it might be opening its borders soon so a slow trip west could be on the cards.
As always, thank you for reading. We’ll update you with our plans as soon as we know what we’re doing, Government guidelines depending.