It’s all different in France

The road trip over to Dinan, France was the stuff of holiday lore.

A sixteen hour car journey that began well enough, except someone remembered that he had forgotten his sunglasses about half way around the M25; but nobody is perfect.

Eurotunnel cost us over three hours and I am not happy about it. Whoever set the specifications and operating tolerances of those trains needs retraining.

Once off the Eurotunnel and away from the very secure area surrounding it we were free to roam the French motorway network. The motorway system in France is mainly a network of well connected dual carriageways. This may sound insufficient, and it would never cope with British traffic densities, but most of the time the driving is easy.

Having driven in Europe, and France in particular, quite a few times before I am accustomed to driving on the opposite side of the road. Even with this experience I still take my time, and an extra look, at roundabouts. It will forever feel weird to be going around the wrong way no matter how many times we venture forth.

French motorways are generally well maintained and the speed limit is higher. I do approve of the variable speed limit according to the weather conditions. Basically 10mph less in poor weather conditions.

When Debbie and I first crossed the channel with four small children there was a system still in place in some regions whereby in the countryside the traffic on the main road was obliged to give way to those emerging from the side roads. I should imagine over the years there must have been a few interesting incidents for the locals near Calais to recount of the wayward English doing it wrong but thankfully none of them include me.

If you should choose to join us dans le continent, or indeed wherever you may find yourself today, please drive carefully.

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