The routeIt is rather easy to get bored of the same four walls and start to plot ways of escaping to anywhere else even if just for a little while. Having seen Top Gear challenges pass through the Mont Blanc tunnel made me question how long it actually takes to get there. An advantage of being an OU computing student is access to Microsoft's Dreamspark premium which grants you access to a lot of useful Microsoft products, various versions of Windows Server, SQL server, Visual studio amongst others but most importantly Autoroute 2013.

Whilst you can do all this online their is something nice about having a local installation of a program that does stuff. I also have a USB GPS receiver so in theory I could use Autoroute as a Tom Tom, although trying to attach my laptop to the windscreen would be problematic at best.

The maps do have limitations so you cant alwaysNot a map of everywhere rely on it being able to point you towards the nearest branch of McDonalds, leave Europe and you find that you are winging it. That said it is a useful tool for working out driving times with rest breaks, fuel stops and sleep. Although persuading it that you don't want to use the channel tunnel is an art in itself.

It turned out that it was quite possible to do Mont Blanc and back in a long weekend without rushing and presented my proposal to a friend who owned a rather vital piece of equipment that I shall refer to as a car. His parents were renting a house in the south of France in the summer and had been invited along so the cunning plan of combining the Alps and the south of France was hatched.

Read more: Tour de some of France 2013 - Introduction

Day 20 - 04/04/07

Woke up at about 2am with an almighty urge to empty my gut… yes, poisoned twice in a first world nation after nearly two weeks in the back end of know where, typical!

Didn’t feel as bad the time before, I suppose I was getting used to it.

We left the hotel at 9am, we didn’t need to get to the port till 11am but Dave and Bill had already set off by the time we got to our car.

Landrover G4 vehiclesThe drive to the port took about ten minutes and ironically we arrived seconds after Dave and Bill. Dave and Bill had roof racks so were in a different lane to board the ferry but we all met up for a morning coffee in the terminal. Ferry terminals are boring places and time really didn’t fly, the ferry left port at about 1.15 and I don’t think we were boarded till about 12.20.Prode opf Bilbao welcome

Knowing what goes on, on the ferry, meant it didn’t take me or Rob long to have found our cabin, done some shopping and got a beer and a table at the back of the boat overlooking the loading ramp. A short while past and Dave and John wondered into the bar, eventually joining us.

That’s about it again. Not much interesting happens on the ferry. The weather is a little rougher this time but since its only one night I don’t expect much to happen. The boat should dock at about 5pm tomorrow.

Tomorrow night I’m staying at Robs and then going home the day after.

Day 19 - 03/04/07

Felt better today. Had coffee at the café not far from the hotel which is owned by the same people and then we set off North. I was still recovering and there really isn’t much interesting to say about travelling through Spain- it is simply a country in the way of where we were going.

Read more: Morocco - day 19

Day 18 - 02/04/07

Very early hours…. I was woken by the sound of Rob throwing up a lot, the backing track of the rain hitting the tin roof of the room only served to emphasise the bad feeling brewing in my gut.

Having travelled so far, especially to such a poor country as morocco it was somewhat ironic to get food poisoning the first night back in a first world nation. Fortunately we weren’t setting off till midday by which point the worse had literally passed.

The road North


Read more: Morocco - day 18