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Old 07-06-2018, 12:44 AM   #91
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Originally Posted by Colexis Mom View Post
Well you answered my question as I was reading along. Over 600 cemeteries? My gosh.
That was one of my questions as we were going along too, so I was glad we got an answer to it.

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It certainly explains issues trying to find your loved ones.
It does.

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I do have to wonder what it must be like living in the area amongst all of them.
I would think it's very sobering and a constant reminder of the history of the area. However, the more scary part are the bombs etc. that they still keeping finding. That's the bit I couldn't deal with if I lived out there. It's bad enough that they occasionally still find Second World War bombs over here, but not that many, each year. It's a lot more frequent occurrence out there.
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Old 07-06-2018, 12:46 AM   #92
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Saturday 9 June – part nine: holding our collective breath

We made our way off again. From here, it would be all the way back to the Eurotunnel terminal in Calais, an hour and a half or so away. I got some photos on the way…





Another cemetery





Mark chatted away to the three guys who had his sense of humour and we had such a ball with them. It really helped to make the time fly by.

The journey back was fine and we were soon pulling up at Eurotunnel. The only frustration I had was with being on a coach was that we didn’t have a clue which train we were aiming for, so we didn’t know how long we’d be waiting.



We cleared the check-in easily enough and frankly that can sometimes be a challenge. We’ve queued for half an hour just to get past this point before. Then we headed over to the terminal and, as in England, there was a separate passport check for coach passengers. We were competing with three other coaches, all of which had pulled up at around the same time as us, and unfortunately one of them was right in front of us. However, the officers were very good and told us to stay put on the coach until they’d cleared the passengers from the last coach, which at least meant we weren’t standing for a long period, which worked for me.

The difference here was that passport control wasn’t in the main building, as it is in Folkestone, so as soon as the coach was cleared, we could get back on the bus again. Then we were taken to the terminal building.

We were told we had about 20 minutes or so here, so our first stop was at the restrooms, then we headed into the duty free, managing to go in the wrong way, as they’ve moved everything around since we were last here in September. I finally found some macarons that I shared with Mark on the coach later. I promptly decided that was a mistake, as he moaned about the quality of them… Ok, you won’t get any more then!

I also got a box of six bottles of wine, as it was crazy cheap and Mark got a box of beer. We saw that other people on the coach had bought various things, although they all took theirs back on the coach with them. We asked the driver if he could stow our goodies underneath the coach and thankfully he could, as otherwise it could’ve been an unpleasant drive back with those on board with us. I have to say for the rest of the way, every time we went around a corner or over something uneven, we kept hearing the bottles clink!

We headed back on to the coach and made our way over to wait for our train, grabbing our dinner on the way. We then had the wait for our train. As I say, we had no idea which we were, but we managed to get that information out of the driver. It did look as if we might get on the earlier train, but then two of the coaches we’d seen earlier on turned up, along with another and our hopes were scuppered.

Finally we were boarding and heading through the train. At least we’d be right at the front.



We had noticed that the coach on the previous train had been on there for some time and we figured maybe there was something wrong with it, but When we got to Folkestone, it turned out the problem was actually with the train itself. We watched the cab move backwards to give the coach room to get out (and even then it was tight! ), but the sides wouldn’t come down for ages. We waited and waited and waited, as we had to have those to drive off. I think we all held our collective breath and finally they went down and we were off. Phew! We all commented that, given they had problems in France half an hour ago, surely they’d have radioed ahead to get someone on standby in case there were more problems?

From there, it was a very quick 10 minute journey back to where we’d left the car and we all headed back to our respective cars, having thoroughly enjoyed our day out. We had an easy enough drive home and were back before 9:00pm, all in the daylight, which was lovely.

It had been a very long, but very worthwhile day out and I’m so glad we did it.

The weather today was cloudy with some sun and temperatures in the mid to high 70s.
Today we walked 3.7 miles.
The best thing today was seeing places we’d never been to before and probably never would, had it not been for taking part in this tour.
The worst thing today was waiting to see if we could get off the Eurotunnel when we got back to England!
The funniest thing today was our conversations with the three guys on the coach.
Today we tried taking the Cambrai tour of the cemeteries
And the result was it was fascinating and we learnt so much.
The most magical moment today was seeing the poppies everywhere we went, a poignant way to remember what happened on what are now just ordinary fields.

Next: a new trip report - Back to Bath and my donkeys…
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Old 07-06-2018, 08:20 AM   #93
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I think your magical moment description is perfect - the way to remember what happened on what are now just ordinary fields. Indeed. And you guys only saw a few cemeteries, as you saw yet one more on your drive back.

Glad you found a good deal on wine and beer! Always a good find.
The bit with the coach not getting off the train right away sounded a little scary!
Informative little getaway - thanks for sharing!
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Old 07-06-2018, 08:36 AM   #94
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What a great tour to take! A long day, but very worthwhile!


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Old 07-06-2018, 08:48 AM   #95
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I think your magical moment description is perfect - the way to remember what happened on what are now just ordinary fields. Indeed. And you guys only saw a few cemeteries, as you saw yet one more on your drive back.
I think it was about the right number of cemeteries though. If there had been any more, I think you'd have started to get a bit blasé and that would be the worst thing.

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Glad you found a good deal on wine and beer! Always a good find.
The bit with the coach not getting off the train right away sounded a little scary!
It was a bit of a heart in the mouth moment. I didn't fancy getting stuck there after a very long day!

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Informative little getaway - thanks for sharing!
My pleasure!
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Old 07-06-2018, 08:52 AM   #96
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What a great tour to take! A long day, but very worthwhile!
Definitely! You don't mind being exhausted after a day out like that where you saw so much and learnt so much.
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Old 07-06-2018, 09:37 AM   #97
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Thanks for sharing. Always nice to get a bit of history with the reports you have!
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Old 07-06-2018, 10:41 AM   #98
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Thanks so much for sharing. All of this puts our little problems in perspective.
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Old 07-06-2018, 12:21 PM   #99
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Thanks so much for sharing. All of this puts our little problems in perspective.
Well said. Doesn't it just?
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Old 07-06-2018, 06:04 PM   #100
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Glad you had such a great tour in Northern France as quite an experience! Too bad with the train troubles on the return. It's kind of odd not knowing which train you are going to board. You'd think they'd have this plan and inform you of the train you'll be on.
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Old 07-06-2018, 08:45 PM   #101
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Great buys on the return trip, which for the most part seemed to go smoothly.
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Old 07-07-2018, 01:35 AM   #102
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Glad you had such a great tour in Northern France as quite an experience! Too bad with the train troubles on the return. It's kind of odd not knowing which train you are going to board. You'd think they'd have this plan and inform you of the train you'll be on.
I guess most people probably aren't that fussed and are happy to leave it to the tour organisers, but I just like to know... I think it's that feeling of being in control...
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Old 07-07-2018, 01:39 AM   #103
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Great buys on the return trip, which for the most part seemed to go smoothly.
It did, which is always a relief. We've had various problems previously when returning through the tunnel, so I was pleased it was all straightforward this time...
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Old 07-10-2018, 06:42 PM   #104
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Great finish to another great report! Thanks for taking us along for the ride!
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