18 April 2010

Part Four: Options & Our Global Operation

The plane is fully boarded in 10 minutes and we’re backing away from the gate 20 minutes early. This is a race against a volcanic ash cloud and our pilot is desperate to win. Thankfully, I doze off within minutes and wake up just minutes before we touch down in Barcelona. We are officially in Europe and it feels good!

This is our crossroads destination. There are several options from this point that will determine how we pass the final leg to London by land, as we’re now in the “volcanic ash zone.” The real conundrum seems to be crossing the Channel, as there is absolutely no foot traffic allowed and space on the Euro Car Tunnel is limited. Options at the moment include:

1. Renting a car direct to London, crossing at Calais to Dover on the EuroTunnel then continuing on to our final destination.
2. Renting a car to Calais then getting picked up there by Charlie’s Mom, who would shuttle us back to England and on to London.
3. Taking an overnight bus to Paris then a train to Calais and shuttled back to England.
4. Taking a mid-day train to Madrid then catching an overnight bus direct to London.
5. Taking an overnight train to Brussels then getting shuttled across to England on the EuroTunnel by my Belgian host family.
6. Riding horses all the way.

While there’s no final word on what we’re going to do, the whole operations team extends far beyond the five of us. With Aditi in London checking prices and schedules for the EuroTunnel online the forwarding details to us by text message and Sarah in Barcelona calling car rental companies and leaving voicemails with facts and figures, this epic journey would never have worked without them. They are our little pieces of heaven. Thank you thank you thank you.

How do you think we should get back to London?

1 comment:

Sarah Brennan said...

I'd definitely go with a donkey rental for the trip from Barcelona to London. Much more efficient than horses at half the price for a day's rental, plus the added bonus that they look so damn depressed all the time.