Day 19 – May 6th – Southampton to somewhere in France

On to mainland Europe! After 14 awesome shows throughout the UK it was time for us to head to the Netherlands for the final 3 shows – I can’t believe tour is almost over!! It’s one of those situations that feels like forever but also flies by at the same time. We had a ferry to catch in Dover so we headed that direction and arrived with a little spare time so we drove up to Dover castle to snap some photos. When I heard we were taking a ferry I pictured a decent sized boat… what I didn’t expect was a massive cruise ship looking thing!! Onboard there was a bar, restaurant, café etc… I had come prepared with some Strongbow cider since I knew we would be on the ship for 2.5 hours. We found a corner to settle in to and Ed and I had a nice long chat about life and relationships. I always enjoy hearing other people’s perspective and given my relationship had ended about two weeks before I left to travel… love and relationships were still fresh on the brain.

I had intended on doing some writing but ended up talking and finding my way to the duty free store to douse myself in perfume since I haven’t washed my clothes in almost two weeks! That’s just the joys of being on the road and on the move. I’m not that smelly person wandering the streets…yet haha. I do my best to air my clothes out and keep them clean. For someone who never had a need to wear deodorant everyday… I feel like I shellac myself on the regular now! Gross.

We finally arrived at the port in France and had a short drive to the “hotel” we were staying at called A1 Hotel. Hmmm… I think this chain has misunderstood the term hotel. It was much more like a hostel with small rooms (that had bunk beds) and shared bathrooms. I’ve come to the point in my travels that it just doesn’t make a difference… when you are on an adventure you just go with it. I’ve overcome my weirdness about my face touching strange pillows… and I really don’t care to inspect the bed before I climb into it (all things I used to do in the hotels in the states). I’m usually tired so when I see a bed… I sleep in it!

It was a bit after dinner time so we all went on a walking adventure to the local grocery store and picked up some cheese, meats, olives, bread, and other little nibbles to make a nice little picnic spread. Back at the hotel it was about 6-7 of us crammed into this tiny dorm-like hotel eating our food treasures off a bed and drinking wine. It’s moments like these that I get super nostalgic about – like I know that this moment won’t and can’t be recreated again. When you slowdown in life juuuuust enough, moments like these happen ALL the time (I feel that as much as I was an “in the moment person” when I worked full time I feel like I let some moments like these just pass by without any special thought or consideration).

Hotel wine party time! These nights always turn into something fun and interesting and this night lived up to the hotel wine party reputation (if there is one haha!). We were all drinking and chatting when we heard a commotion out in the hallway. Chris, the trumpet player, was getting yelled at and led down the hallway by his neck by the hotel manager on duty… who proceeded to point to a sign and continue bickering at him. APPARENTLY, the “hotel” rule was no drinking in the hallways and Chris was swigging his bottle of wine and not bothering anyone. The sign? Well it was in FRENCH… and placed in the most obscene place possible in the lobby (up high near the ceiling next to the door) – NOT a noticeable spot. All in all it gave us a good laugh and we stuck to keeping the wine contained to our rooms.

I was rooming with Brad and Brian and Brad’s back had been bothering him so I decided to pretend I was a professional masseuse and walk on his back (wine gives you good ideas like this – and the confidence to feel like you know exactly what you are doing!). Brian was on the top bunk watching wrestling and having his usual bursts of enthusiasm… It was a scene. I totally wish I had a video of the shenanigans that went on throughout the night! Even just writing this weeks later makes me giggle. Welcome to FRANCE!

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