The first leg of this trip took us and the Mini on the ferry from Hull to Rotterdam and then to Brussels, where an uncle in the Army made us plan a route and re-pack the Mini with military precision.
Europe was a very different place then and we were certainly innocents abroad. We had some hair raising moments negotiating cities, especially when the Mini chose those moments to break down but we soon learned to pitch our tent in record time and to bail out of places we did not like the look of. We always accepted the offer of a meal out, naively expecting the best of people and we were proved right.
The only way to communicate with friends and family back home was by letter. We kept up a steady correspondence by telling people where we would be going next and then heading straight to the Post Restante when we arrived to collect our mail.
The first part of our trip took us through France, across the top of Italy to Venice and then down the coast of what was then Yugoslavia to Dubrovnik. This was followed by what turned out to be a nightmare journey.
We decided to take a cross country route, skirting Albania and going over the mountains into Greece. But the “red” road on our map soon turned into a rough track and as night fell we found ourselves making slow progress over a mountain pass. We were surprised to see what we thought were rather thin Alsation dogs on the side of the road. Luckily the Mini kept going. Later, fellow travellers in Greece told us they were wolves.
After staying the night in what we suspected was a brothel, we continued our journey
into Greece and with great relief reached Thessaloniki.
Back in Italy we briefly had jobs in Rome as Au Pairs. Then it was time to head home via Austria, Germany and the Netherlands and back to Rotterdam. We had to push the Mini off the ferry in Hull and had just 2/6d left in cash (about 25p).
Some 40 years on and now both retired, the travelling bug bit again. Both of us have always wanted to visit Africa and what could be better than a riding safari? Our first trip was to Borana in the foothills of Mount Kenya which was so enjoyable we knew that just one trip to Africa wasn't going to be enough.
We couldn't resist a visit to Botswana and the amazing Okavango Delta. And then it was a question of perhaps just one more? And so to Wait a Little and its Big Five safari. Here we found beautifully trained horses and learned so much about the game we tracked with Philip and Rusty. Did you ever think you would be able to get close to a lion while on horseback? Well we did here and we will never forget that big male lion – or Wait a Little.