It’s all getting so very exciting.
I’m at the stage that when I should be sleeping, I keep thinking about Saturday 17th February. So, what is happening in 6 weeks?
Ruth my other half, Skye our gorgeous (and he knows it!) Golden Retriever &
myself will be setting off on our 7 week International Roadtrip adventure. Starting in
leafy but normally wet & grey Cheshire, we’re driving 994 miles to hopefully a sunny... Bellagio on Lake Como in Northern Italy.
On Day One, we drive south, quick night stop then on the Sunday we drive to Le Shuttle at Folkestone which has its own “Dog check in area” …Yes, seriously!
Once in France, we can enjoy the much better & less congested roads before
crossing the border into Belgium then Luxembourg & Germany’s beautiful Black
Forest which is truly stunning.
We take a leisurely 4 days to do this before a 2-hour drive into Austria to spend 2 ½ weeks in hopefully snowy Bad Hofgastein (what a name!) It’s then the final stage through the Brenner pass into Italy and chilling on the shores of Lake Como.
If you think taking your children on holiday can be at times a little stressful then you’ll appreciate that taking a 35 kg, 4 legged animal with you in a car for 7 weeks does require a lot of “pre thinking” We’ve just filled in Skye’s application for his “passport”.
Dog passports are more expensive than human ones at £283… And you have to apply yearly!
What is crazy is that we’re not allowed to take Skye’s dried dog food or his treats into France.
Instead, once arriving at Calais we need to go the pet superstore and buy
exactly the same brand that they export to us in England! Not worth arguing about! Other “pre planning” is happening.
Tomorrow I’ll be off to the brilliant Jaguar dealership at Manchester’s Trafford Centre to swap onto “all season tyres” for this adventure. Different countries and indeed regions have very different rules on what tyres you must have on your car between November and April each year. Get it wrong and it’s a fine!
Why are we, or more accurately me so excited about this Roadtrip? Think there are
a few reasons to explain this feeling. Firstly, it's NOT a holiday it's an adventure.
There’s something really exciting knowing that you have only booked 1 way tickets and you decide (within reason) when you’re coming back.
Secondly, travelling with your dog makes it so special. Apologies to you who haven’t
yet become dog owners but we dog owners tend to treat our dogs as family! On the
continent, unlike the UK, when you go out for dinner, your dog comes with you! We
did a similar trip last year and in Bad Hofgastein there is an amazing Austrian
Restaurant called Aurum run by these 2 lovely Austrian ladies. It's quite plush and
we popped our heads in one afternoon to have a look at the menu.
We gingerly asked whether dogs were allowed and the lady immediately responded “Of course”.
Later that evening we returned with Skye, and he joined another 2 dogs who were
there with their owners!!!
Anyway, more “pre planning” to do …only 6 weeks to go...