Friday 30th September - Monday 4th October
OK before you get smart and point out that this is my fourth holiday this year, in my defense I will say that two of them have only been three nights away from home and the other two were only a week each so put those together and it's a total of a mere 20 nights.....so now you actually feel sorry for me don't you!
Hubby and I were away with two other couples, M&P and T&F. We were taking a coach trip for three nights in Lille and included a full day trip into Bruges.
We had the usual early morning pick up and a couple of changes of feeder coaches then onto our final coach at Dover then onto the ferry and off at Calais and to our hotel, which was on the outskirts of Lille but thankfully near the Metro. Our driver reminded us of a local performer we often see called 'Hat-Man' so that became his nick-name even though he never wore a hat. Our tour guide was a lady who was possibly a bit older than us and obviously very experienced in French ways and the ways of Lille in particular and she had lots of information to give us over the coach speaker....although she used 'ermmmm' as very frequent punctuation so I kept listening for that and not taking in the info!
We decided not to sign up for the additional trip into Ghent, not only because it was quite expensive but also because Hubby and F especially were hating all the hours on the coach. That turned out to be a lucky decision for M as she was really unwell on that morning so wouldn't have done well on the coach, at least her and P could spend the morning in the hotel and meet the four of us in Lille later when she was feeling better. We did a lot of walking around seeing the buildings from outside and inside if they were shops or restaurants. The weather for this time of year was amazing, 25/27 degrees C, unbelievable! I bought three air-plants for my children as it's so hard to find small gifts for them, especially as this is our fourth holiday (oops promised myself I wouldn't mention that again).
Unfortunately our hotel didn't serve any food all weekend, although they advertised a full menu, so we had to train into Lille each night, but we made good use of the hotel bar and stayed until 1am on the first night and not much earlier the two following nights! In Lille we went looking for the famous military citidel/castle but that was closed too so T and I had to take photos through a gap in the huge wooden doors! Our last morning, Monday, was free time in Lille and it also transpired that most of the shops don't open till late on Mondays! Our day in Bruges was good, with lots of Belgian chocolate to buy and waffles to eat!
I know we laughed a lot but right now I can't remember anything specific we were laughing about. Over all P made a good job of taking care of the euros-kitty and I was ticket monitor on the Metro. The down side was Hubby ended up in pain when his sciatica flared up and P has hip pain and the rest of us stiffened up each time we spent a while on the coach, so M said to me today that even though people think that coach trips are for old people perhaps they really need fit people....I said that I thought coach trips MADE their customers into old people!