I am a planner. I like to have a plan everywhere we go. I like to have all of my tickets printed out ahead of time. I print out hotel reservations, just in case they don’t have them when we arrive. I plan down to the smallest detail so there are no surprises. Unfortunately, there are always surprises. I know this. I expect this. But when it happens, I feel my heart start beating faster, tunnel vision sets in and I go into survival mode.
Well, that may be exaggerating a bit but not much, really. We got our bus from Cork to Waterford where we would change buses and head to Rosslare Harbour where we would get the ferry to France. This was the first leg of the trip. Well, the bus was 5 minutes late getting to Waterford and the connecting bus left!! Yes, it left! I was floored, and slightly freaked out. We had to be on the overnight ferry in order to make all of our connections. We were less than 2 hours into our trip and we were completely and totally screwed!!!
Luckily we were in Ireland, and the Irish are the kindest people I’ve met so far. The lovely man at the station radioed the bus, grabbed a free driver and loaded us onto our own private charter as we headed up the road about 3 kilometers to where the connectiong bus had pulled over to wait for us. Yes, that really happened. Can you imaging that happening in New York, or Chicago? I certainly can’t. So we got loaded up and were back on track. Life always works out.
We made it to the ferry with time to spare, found our cabin and headed up to the cafeteria for some dinner. Well, it wasn’t bad but it wasn’t really good either. cafeteria food is cafeteria food, no matter what country you’re in. Our rooms were sparse but clean and we went to bed soon after dinner.
The ferry won’t arrive in Cherbourg, France until 2pm so we had time to explore a little bit. The kids found a ‘kid zone’ and I found a duty free! I’m a bit nervous about our arrival in France because I don’t speak a word of French. I took French in college and go a 23. That’s not a misprint, I got a 23. Out of 100. I tried so hard, I brought a tape recorder to class everyday, I stayed after for extra help. I just can’t do French. Here’s hoping our cab diver didn’t get a 23 in English!