Crossing the channel turned out to be a lot easier than expected. Just rode up to the ferry terminal and into the ticketing office:
‘Calais please with a bike’
‘No, one way please’
And off I went following a red line painted on the road to the boat. I did get pulled over for a rather worryingly implemented security check; I got put through a scanner but the extent of the search of my bike was to ask if I was carrying any knives, guns, explosives etc. Which as long as you are prepared to lie about it, is apparently OK as no one actually checked! To be fair they would catch anyone who had forgotten to put their gun on their bike and had kept it about their person…
After the security check I rode up onto the boat and stuck my bike in an alcove where a deckhand helpfully put a hawser around it.
Happily after the crossing everything was as I’d left it and I could roll off the boat into France.
Which was hot – a lot hotter than England. Luckily I wasn’t riding far and I laid up in the nearby town of Guines at the Belle Pecheur Camping site; where I was greeted by an English family leaving straight away as they didn’t like the showers – proof if anything I was in France.
I was lucky enough to have another English family from Cornwall camp next to me and they were kind enough to share their dinner with me, which I was very grateful for.
The next morning I set off towards the Belgian border and settled into some beautiful but uneventful cycling.