The Journey South Begins!

Friday16th January 2015

Well we finally made it South but are still peeved about the ferry cancellation. Not only did it cost us several extra nights in campsite fees but from what we’ve learnt from others’ experiences, this is not at all an unusual occurrence. It seems this particular ferry company have a monopoly on this route and cancel ferries using whatever excuse is likely to be believable. In this instance it was the weather! To add insult to injury the rescheduled ferry left an hour late with no explanation or apology and arrived three hours late apparently still due to bad weather…..nothing to do with fuel saving then on a very quiet and obviously undersubscribed ferry?!

The plus point was that this ‘rough weather’ gave me one of the best night’s sleep I’ve ever had on a ferry, the gentle swell through the Bay of Biscay was more soothing then sickening! It was a shame I was so tired for the bulk of the journey though, not having slept at our overnight stop together with the five o’clock alarm call made the whole day a bit of a trial. We both get inordinately bored on ferries. Perhaps one day is too short a time to settle but we were clock watching with meal times and drink times punctuating the day and finally falling into bed at a very early 10pm.

We had set our alarm clock once more to be ready for the expected arrival time but after breakfast with no land in sight, John took a GPS position and realised we were still about 60 miles out of Santander! More time to kill! Maybe it was a ploy to make us spend more money on board!

Anyway at least the exit from Portsmouth was interesting. The weather although cool was perfectly fine for being on deck while we left port and it was a bit like having a free boat trip round the dockyard. I took a few photos, they’re a bit grey but hopefully we won’t be seeing too much more of that in the coming months!

Some Navy ships as we leave our berth. Is that an aircraft carrier I can see? Presumably a decommissioned one!

Some Navy ships as we leave our berth. Is that an aircraft carrier I can see? Presumably a decommissioned one!

It's such a complicated vista! There's so much to see, you don't know where to look!

It’s such a complicated vista! There’s so much to see, you don’t know where to look!

A more modern-looking vessel!

A more modern-looking vessel!

Threatening skies which hopefully we'll be leaving behind!

Threatening skies which hopefully we’ll be leaving behind!

The throngs gather on the Heli-deck!

The throngs gather on the Heli-deck!

Going, going......

Going, going……

......not quite gone, we've still got the historic dockyards....

……not quite gone, we’ve still got the historic dockyards….

...and Portsmouth very own Spinnaker Tower....

…and Portsmouth’s very own Spinnaker Tower….

....and not forgetting the Solent's latest tourist attraction....

….and not forgetting the Solent’s latest tourist attraction….

....can you see it now? The beached car carrier!

….can you see it now? The beached car carrier!

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