To mark the 30th anniversary of the worst nuclear accident in history I’m publishing my notes from a trip to the Ukraine back in 2010. The contents of the following three pages started out as excitedly scribbled paragraphs in a little black Moleskine,…
I need a break, and the new bike needs a proper run, so the both of us head across the water for a spot of mindless self-indulgence. Swapping campsites for cheap hotels and minimal luggage I’m going to spend a week going where the wheels take me, recording the usual irreverent observations and mediocre photos here for posterity. This is cruft, mere content, so I’m not going to bother with separate posts. Read at your own peril.
It’s been ages since I had a good long ride (actress to bishop) so as the kids head back to school I’m heading south with everything an expedition needs: bike, tent, and a keen novice. That’s right folks, there’s somebody mad enough to come with me on a three week camping trip that optimistically aims to take in France, Switzerland, Italy and Spain before looping back to Blighty for a shower and detox.
Nothing is as big a turn off – on any level – as a caravan. Their sad, beige contents are usually flimsy, they smell of chemical toilets, and they make your car handle like a combine harvester. You’re unwelcome everywhere you go, except for authorised caravan sites where you can mingle with your balding peers and bicker about the latest outrage in the news.
Why anybody would voluntarily do this is beyond me, but a camper van – now that’s an entirely different proposition. For a start you’ve got a vehicle which drives like a car, reverses like a car, and fits in a regular parking space. There’s leather, alloy wheels, a rack for your surfboard and a towing hitch for the trailer with your dirt bikes. Could this be the ideal mix of camping adventure and home comforts? We rent a VW California and take it for a lap of Britain to find out.