Goodbye to Andrew
Trip Start Aug 23, 1996
555Trip End Ongoing
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We drove into France and onwards to Belgium, as usual it was raining. We headed for Spa Francorchamps, home of the Belgium Grand Prix. We hit the town first, buying chocolates for our Mothers as usual, and then tried to find the old roads that were used for this track, but once this was proving too hard, we headed for Germany. We were going to the Nurburgring. For quite a while now, 2 guys at work, Paul and Al, we had been talking about going there, and we had booked the train for our bikes, 5 weeks from now, so we were on a reconnaissance mission. Finding it though, was proving to be slightly harder than it sounded. We eventually made it, bought our ticket for a lap and hit the track. Here is a race track that is 20 Klm's long and is a public road and there were all manner of cars here, so we set off. As we were slow, we stayed to the right. Lucy was screaming for me to slow down, I was just saying fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck while looking in the mirrors constantly, and Andrew was in the back, videoing the scene. It was exhilarating, but bloody scary, and as I had now lost my ring virginity, I was a true rimmer, so we drove over to Koblenz, to camp. We had been here before in 96, so we set our tents up and walked into town for beers. In the campground, they had set up a big tent so we decided that we would get on the beers here and eat. So we did, but the food, well the pizza, that's all they had, was the worst we had all ever had, for that, we had beers for dinner instead. While this was going on, there was also a German country and Western band playing, and the people with the mullets, well, all the Germans, they were all dancing to this !!!!! So we had more beers, and then we started doing shots of this stuff. Kleiner Feigling. A fig based schnapps, and for a Euro, very doable. You had to tap it on its lid on the table, remove the lid, place the lid on your nose, pick the shot up, still in its bottle, with your mouth, and then swallow. We were joined by a German couple and we were doing loads of them, and then they ran out. Another table had bought all of them, so our German couple bought us this stuff, that tasted like petrol but was made of corn and called Korn. We had it, it was disgusting and to help German/Australian relations, I bought them some in return. The woman threw up, her husband pissed himself, and then the beer drinking resumed.
I don't know what happened, but I felt like shit and it was morning. We had to leave this place, we had another date with the Nurburgring and Lucy and Andrew wanted to go. I had 3 panadols, and off we went. I was not well. We had food. It did not work. We arrived at the track, and the announcement came out that the track was closed as there had been an accident. I thanked whoever you thank at this moment in time. I had another 3 panadols. Lucy suggested that she drive. I said I was alright. I lied. They re-opened the track, we hit it. By the first corner, my adrenaline was pumping, and my hangover had gone. Things were the same as yesterday though, , I was just saying fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck while looking in the mirrors constantly, and Andrew was in the front, videoing the scene, while Lucy was screaming for me to slow down. A BMW ring taxi overtook me and so did loads of Porches and VW's and loads of bikes. I managed to overtake a bike briefly, then he retook me. This lap, we even managed to hit the banked corner. It was fun. After 18 minutes, the lap was over, so we said goodbye to Nurburgring. I was freaking as I was not looking forward to the next time I was going to be here on the bike
We headed towards Luxembourg, as Andrew had never been there before and it was on the way to France, but we had time to go back to Triar to see the coliseum again. Andrew had never seen this before, and it was cool to go back to it. We jumped back in the car after this briefest of visits and hit Luxembourg. We didn't see anything here, we just set up camp, had dinner and then slept
We were headed for Reims. Home of champagne. We had a tour booked for the Ruinart factory, but on the way in, we found the Mercier factory and hooked up on to their tour. It was ok. They put you into a train and you were driven around/ a woman spoke to you and then you had a glass of champagne afterwards. However, the Ruinart tour, you walked with a woman, she spoke to you like a normal person and then you tried quite a few glasses. Not only is this my favourite champagne, but the tour was great, so we did the only thing that should be done, we bought more Ruinart. We went into Reims, had a look at the Cathedral, and bought more champagne. Then we looked at the time, and found that we had 3 hours to get back to Calais. Sounds easy, well, we had to sit on around 90mph to get there, and then we were there. We went through the French visa control quite easily, but this time, we went in the others line as Andrew is an Aussie. The said to him that he was an Australian. These border guards are switched on !!!!! They said he had no visa. They were smarter than we thought. They said they would let him into the country !!!!! We thanked Andrew, as this was the first time in a car we had not been searched.
Then it was time to say goodbye to Andrew. Another body had left us, but we had had another fun trip to boot.