Sunday morning we're packing up to head for the train station in Paris to travel up to Rotterdam (Holland) for a day. The next night we'll be taking an overnight ferry to Hull, England. We took a cab over to the station, got dropped off in front, and went inside. It seemed kind of small, more like a bus station where about 8 tracks could hold trains.
Our train finally arrived, quite a sleek one, and not an old fashioned one as I'd hoped. Hubby was worried the whole time about being separated from our luggage and having it stolen while we weren't around. He'd even tried to buy bicycle locks to lock them to something. We ended up sitting only 4 rows of seats away from the luggage cart but he was constantly watching and standing up each time we stopped to make sure none of our luggage walked away.
On the final long junction he finally relaxed and we could enjoy our lunch we were served with our tickets. It was an interesting pasta salad with veggies but I think I would have liked it warm rather than cold. Same with the green beans. The strudel wasn't bad though.
*Suddenly the commercial for Booking.com popped into my head-- You're driving down dirt roads, trudging through sand, dragging your suitcases, and wondering "did I make a mistake?"*
Our hotel, the Carlton Oasis in Spijkenisse, was in the middle of an industrial park. I had to have the name repeated to me multiple times to get it. *Spee kanesse with soft s's"
It was a "boutique" hotel, catering to business conferences, and with nothing else around, the restaurant is a gathering for the residents for dinner.
This was our view out the windows of our room.
As I said, it was pouring rain the next day and anyhow we were miles away from a town worth visiting, and the cab fare would be ridiculous, so we used this as a day of rest from all that walking in Paris. I thought I'd get my journaling caught up but spent a lot of time trying to figure out how to load up photos on my laptop so I could share some on Facebook. Hubby spent a good part of the day trying to figure out how to get either of the TVs to work, watching a few programs and napping. I happened to catch a BBC Two program similar to our TV series on renovating old houses, called "Restoration Home", but here they have REALLY OLD houses. They renovated an old stone manor, Castle Cassillas, where they dug up the stone floor basement kitchen and found relics down there. Man, I would love to watch that series at home! Oooh, just found a link to it. Hope it works so I can watch it on my computer. Restoration Home *Nope, the videos don't work in the US*
We went downstairs for dinner to a really nice looking restaurant there, and had a fabulous dinner. I had grilled jumbo shrimp on a bed of finely diced vegetables, on top of grilled potato medallions. It was delicious. I've noticed in Paris and here they cut their veggies much smaller than we do, and I like that. I'm getting tired of trying to eat chunks that are too big for my mouth. My dessert was a pear tart that came with a walnut cream to pour over the top, and a thick cream with a tart berry that they said is for decoration, like we do parsley.
Our ferry was leaving at 9pm so we called our taxi and headed out on the 45 minute drive to the Rotterdam Port. I'm not sure what I was expecting. We had reserved a cabin to sleep in, and I'm wondering was it going to be like the ferries in Washington, that transports people and cars across the water? What a surprise when we came to the terminal and found it was just like a small cruise ship! It's getting better!
*Cue booking.com commercial- trudging up the gangplank dragging your suitcases* Except we went up three levels by escalator. Stepping on board we saw lots of travelers looking like day trippers. It wasn't quite as complicated as one of our cruise ships. We walked down the hallway to our corner suite and suddenly......
Booking dot YEAHHHHHH!! Cute, isn't it?
The shower room and toilet (each w/ its own sink) were in separate rooms in our room, although small, but usable.
Things were looking up. We already had our dinner earlier so we just wandered around the ship, checking out the club room, the casino (kind of small) and the shopping (one large room of mainly cosmetics, purses, and toiletries). Nothing like one of our cruise ships but these are only meant to do short trips, not week-long.
Then we headed back for bed and get prepared for our arrival next morning in Hull, England.
Except our beds were hard as rocks, and so were the pillows. What?!!!! Come on people!!!