THE LAST DITCH An Englishman returned after twenty years abroad blogs about liberty in Britain
Turning in my assignment
Home again

Cutting the mustard

I set out apprehensively this morning to pick up Speranza from the parking garage where she has been stowed all week. Another British guest's Ferrari was broken into yesterday in the garage recommended by the hotel. I heard him on the telephone organising the replacement of his smashed window so that he could get underway to catch his Eurotunnel Shuttle home. I hope he made it. I needn't have worried however. She was in good shape. I had rejected the hotel's suggestion as to parking because, inspecting the garage on Google Maps, the entrance ramp looked too steep. I chose instead to park under the nearby Meridien Hotel in what was claimed to be the most secure parking in Nice.

I drove her back to the hotel and loaded up. With all my photographic and computer gear (for editing) I have a lot of stuff with me. I was on the road by 0930 and  – by studiously ignoring the satnav, which was unaware that the usual road to the autoroute is closed and using my own local knowledge based on my difficulties on arrival (and on visiting my friends in Mougins) – found my way West quite easily. It's an L-shaped journey home, following the A8 from Nice toward Marseilles and then joining the Autoroute du Soleil North towards Lyon.

The weather was perfect. Alternately sunny and overcast and with temperatures peaking at 35℃. I drove with the lid down until I stopped for lunch at 1230 and kept it up afterwards to avoid getting sunburned. By the time of my second refuelling stop of the day, it was mid afternoon and I was further North, so the roof came down again for my final run to Dijon, where I am staying overnight. I am a bit bushed to be honest. This week was great fun but hard work. I am not sure I can be bothered to go and and find food, but a couple of hours rest may change that.

Here is the class photo from this week's workshop, with the great man himself second from the right at the front, flanked by Liza Politi who, with her partner Ari Espay (not pictured because he's taking the shot) organises the event and his able young assistant Cali. Your humble blogger is at the back beneath his Panama hat. The organisers are waiting for faster internet than the hotel in Nice can offer to upload the video of our collective efforts, but I will post a link when it has been published.

As usual, my route can be followed here. My classmate Tammy's blog can be found here. With a bit of luck, this time tomorrow, Speranza and I will be on the Chunnel Shuttle home.