We planned to leave at 3am, he in the car with Lulu, travelling via the tunnel, and me on my motorcycle by myself, taking the ferry from Portsmouth to Le Havre. The reason for this is that the journey using the ferry is so much easier on the bike but we prefer to use the tunnel with the dog. We don't like the idea of leaving her in the car by herself for five hours.
The evening before I had a raging sore throat and felt awful. We considered changing our plans and travelling together but I was determined to get the bike to France so decided to travel separately and meet up at a services where the motorways converge, south of Rouen.
It was cool and drizzling when we set off in the early hours and I rode down to Portsmouth wearing long-sleeved t-shirt, jumper and fully lined waterproof jacket. I was perfectly comfortable. The ferry, the "Norman Spirit", was very quiet and I was able to snooze for a while. When we docked at Le Havre, I recieved a phone call from Nick to say he was already at the services and it was 31°C !! I hadn't noticed any change in temperature on the air-conditioned boat. I rapidly removed the jumper and the lining from my jacket and bungied them onto the bike. I passed the message on to a fellow motorcyclist as we prepared to disembark and word went round quickly, all the other riders removing clothes as fast as possible. Riding in hot weather can be really uncomfortable if you are over dressed.
After a long and hard ride south we finally made it home to enjoy our holiday.