We were amused to hear that we had both received letters from the DVLA inviting us to apply for a job as an HGV driver to help alleviate the current lorry driver shortage – apparently they didn’t check their HGV licence holder database against dates of birth. Can you imagine the scary scenario of this septuagenarian being in charge of a fuel-filled juggernaut? I would certainly need a very large gin and tonic to give me the confidence to take the wheel!
🔵 We were so close to Morocco but there was still no sign of the ferry service between Spain and Morocco being reinstated. We made the decision to drive a thousand miles north east to the port of Genoa travelling through Spain then France and on to Italy. It would all be part of our travelling experience and we were not in a rush as we had until the end of October to get to Genoa.
Staying at camp sites offered several benefits such as mains electricity, fresh water, internet connection (hopefully) and, perhaps, an on-site bar, shop and restaurant. Spanish camp sites out of season usually cost between €20 and €30 per night and gave us the opportunity to leave our vehicle in a secure place to go off to explore the local area. On the camp site at Benicàssim fellow campers were mainly Dutch, travelling with caravans as well as in camper vans – many were staying on the site for several weeks. Everyone was very sociable, they played boules each afternoon and showed great interest in the truck and our travel plans. However, after a few nights living cheek by jowl with the hoi polloi we were eager to move on.
We stopped for several nights in a wild, rocky area by a dam and a reservoir where walkers, cyclists and horse riders were enjoying the sunny weather. At the end of the day most of them went home, leaving just a few camper vans overnighting in the car park. After dark It was very quiet and peaceful, the magnificent night sky alight with stars.
Another type of overnight stop we used regularly were out of town hotel car parks where lorry drivers parked up to rest and get something to eat. Time of arrival was critical, lunch seemed to go on until 5 pm and dinner didn’t start until 8 or 9 pm. It better suited us to have a late lunch. Restaurant meals were inexpensive but fairly predictable and usually consisted of meat or fish served with fries. The only choice for fresh vegetables seemed to be salad – iceberg lettuce, maybe with some olives but always with the perplexing addition of tinned tuna. We regularly shopped in Lidl’s and bought lovely fresh fruit and vegetables, so we tried to eat in the truck as much as possible.