Sunday, 5 April 2009
Journey to France
I'm not even sure where to start.....so I'll start at the very beginning.
Once upon a time.....no wait that will take too much time. OK, I will stick to the highlights and some low lights.
We set off in a taxi from home to Heathrow Terminal 5 with a plan to catch the underground there to St Panscras station in London where we were due to hop on the EuroStar bound for Paris. We managed to pack gear for 3 adults and 2 children in 2 large suitcases, very large. Then we had the assorted camera bag, handbags, briefcases (with laptops and required reading, Abigail's Dora the Explorer pull along and Sebastian's elephant backpack with Nintendo DS lite bits and bobs. Not as light as I would have hoped but the best we could manage for a 6 day trip.
We reached Gare du Nord and bought what we thought were the appropriate tickets to Marnee de Vallee (the end of the line and location of the famed Disneyland). After an hour tube journey out to the back of beyond Paris we had just the final leg to go. We got to the gates, put in our tickets and it wouldn't let us out. We had purchased the wrong tickets. It was late on Sunday night and the station was abandoned. Marc pushed the red button fro assistance and the gate opened and he and the children went through. My mother made a mad dash for it and only made it halfway. The gates closed and trapped her. I began frantically pushing the red assistance button and the french went right out of my head as I was trying to explain that my mother was trapped, my husband and children were on the other side of the gate and we didn't have the right ticket.
As if by magic the gates opened again, releasing my mother and allowing me to pass through. Phew!
We stood on the street looking round the ghost town that was the location of our hotel. We were staying at the Adagio Apartments off the Disneyland Park and it would appear that no one cared. After several increasingly frantic moments my mother hailed us a small taxi. We crammed in the luggage and ourselves and after just 5 minutes we were relieved of an extortionate fee for the taxi but hey, we were at our humble abode for the next 3 days.
We grabbed a bit to eat in the shopping precinct next door and settled in for the excitement of Disneyland Paris tomorrow!