Motorcycle Trip: Kent To Reims

Day one of riding around France was a long one.

The day started with us waking up exceptionally early, packing up the panniers and me swinging my leg over before we rode off into the sunrise…

Kind of.
And by kind of, I mean that that story may have included a slight lie because the sun was up way before us. The rest however, is true and two hours after setting off we found ourselves in significantly less glamorous circumstances as we hid out in a petrol station hiding from the rain.

As I stood there frowning thinking to myself about how hungry I was and how annoying it was that in all of the places we could have got stuck, I had to get stuck in the shitty little petrol station that only sold those gross wet cheese sandwiches you find in the fridge, thunder, lightning and monsoon amounts of rainfall crashed around us. It wasn’t great, but eventually the storm died down enough for us to continue on our way and find me something decent to eat go on holiday.

By the time we made it to the tunnel I resembled a drowned rat, but the skies had cleared and everyone was in good spirits. Spirits high enough that some seemingly well-seasoned bikers didn’t seem to mind that I had totally snuck in and joined their gang.

And by joined their gang I mean we crept up behind them on our bikes so we could listen to their music.

It turns out they were pretty nice folk because once we were on the tunnel we had a good old chinwag and I ignored every piece of advice my mum ever gave me about not accepting sweets from strangers, and ate one of their jelly babies. Which was a risky move because I don’t really like jelly babies. But yano, being English, awkward and always hungry means it’s incredibly hard to turn down sweets when they’re offered to you.

The good news is our new biker friends weren’t at all murdery and both S and I survived the trip across to France without a single stab hole.

I’d like to say that I arrived feeling refreshed but truth be told the train was hot as fuck and I was clammy from getting drenched in the previously aforementioned thunderstorm. I guess somebody should have listened to S when he told you to get waterproofs, huh.

Once we reached France we realised that we had set off on this trip without making any plans whatsoever. Which was fine but because we had no hotel booked and no geographical plans, we also had no idea which direction we should be heading in, so we decided to chase the sun and head down south. I didn’t really have much of an input because, yano, I was just an Eminem-singing passenger, but I trusted my human TwatNav.

We rode off weaving along the winding roads before eventually joining the toll road where we started making our way down town walking fast south. The first leg of our trip lasted approximately ten minutes because it suddenly dawned on me that it was thirty degrees celsius and I had four layers on and was slowly melting. Not such a good feeling! But after a not-so-quick pitstop, my layers were off, my sunglasses were on and we were good to go…

For an hour when we realised that the bike was thirsty, so S stopped for fuel

I stopped for a quick collapse, because yano, passenger-ing is hard.

And then eventually we both stopped in Saint-Quentin for some lunch.

We sat in the square munching on pizza (for S) and chips and omelette (for me) watching as one of the liveliest stag dos sat opposite playing the recorder whilst twisting like they did last summer.

I did take a quick picture on my phone but to be honest I’ll save you from viewing it because omelette is hella hard to photograph and also my omelette seemed to come with oil and balsamic vinegar which was a new experience for my tastebuds (weirdly enjoyable) but it also made it look a bit gross. But all bad-egg days aside, eggs are delicious and they gave me the much needed energy to continue sitting on my ass as S drove us around France.

A few hours later and we arrived in Reims, hot bothered and ready for a shower. Unfortunately all of the hotels in the city were booked (good job spontaneity) so we had to go a little further out, where the hotels were also booked. Fun, eh? BUT eventually we managed to find a little hotel nestled into a charming part of Reims, and that charming part of Reims, was an industrial estate type complex. But it had a bar, it had a bed and it had a shower. So in my eyes, we were winning.

I’d like to tell you that we freshened up, wriggled into something super chic and sexy and went on a champagne campaign around the unofficial capital of the wine-growing region, buuuuuut I’m not a liar. So I can’t.

The way our first night in France actually went was with S being simultaneously grossed out and impressed by how wet his t-shirt was from sweat and with me ordering a mojito with the best of intentions, but then proceeding to down two litres of water before collapsing into bed.

Stay tuned for day two where I spend less time sleeping, and more time… Well. Not sleeping!

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Have you ever taken a spontaneous trip?
Tell me all about it in the comments!

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