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Just another view of/by

Pas de Gotthard

Corsica 2015 – overview

It wasn’t as early as ‘usual’ when we took off. This time we had booked a Corsica Ferries transfer from the harbor of Savona, Italy to Bastia, Corsica. This was about 200km less driving than usual, ‘only’ 800km. We took off at 8 AM and to our not so very big surprise, an hour later we were stuck at a trafficjam at the almost ‘usual’ place. This time it was a bit shorter though.

3 hours later we rolled onto the Frauenparkplatz where we bought our Swiss Autobahn vignet.

and only half an hour later we were already at the border, near Basel. The weather was all gray and it was raining a lot.

And in the long tunnels it wasn’t raining but humid enough to fog up the windows.

This year we aimed for the St. Gotthard tunnel again, hoping the traffic jam would be less than last year, where we had to take the St. Bernadino pass. So we went into this every becoming more narrow valley, with high hills around us. And it kept on raining and being cloudy.

Just before Wassen we came to a halt on the Autobahn, but my mom took the empty road next to it, towrds Wassen. The master plan, to take the B-road, overtake the traffic jam on the Autobahn and then merge at Goessenen however failed: the Auffahrt was blocked, so we had to drive the “Ehrenrunde” back to Wassen again, take the B-road back and this time … take the St. Gotthard pass.

The first bit was rather steep and full of roadworks, and my mom moaned she got stuck behind a bus. Good thing was that the bus stopped at a busstop and we could continue our trip. All of a sudden the road wasn’t in tunnels anymore but it got flat and wide open.

And not much further: the top of the pass! 2106 meters high! Four times as high as our local Melibokus (517m). That was just after 14:00, after 6 hours of driving. It was a nice 14 degrees in the rain which just didn’t stop.

After the top it went down with bridges to cover the turns, that was really scary.

But, we all nicely rolled down without too much problems. Unlike the other side: traffic jams non stop.

My mom had to giggle because the fuel consumption of the Audi dropped and it showed at the bottom of the St. Gotthard that we could drive another 1500+ km like this.

But then, we were down at the bottom and we rolled into Italy. All wet.

The temperature went up to 28 degrees! And it was sooo humid, that it was very uncomfortable. Still raining. A lot.

At 15:15 we got through the Italian border. And ofcourse we got stuck behind a ‘local’ from Heppenheim. The temperature had dropped back to 23 degrees and it was raining even more, close to the sound of hailstones. But from the low clouds it seemed that it just rolled away.

15:30 we already were at the first “peage” in Italy, and for 2,20EU we could continue our route to Milano. The traffic was doable, despite the typical Italian driving style. Always driving in the middle lane of a 3 lane Autobahn, if you want to pass you try to hit the bumper from the car in front of you. Average distance on the left lane between cars: 2 meter. Average distance of the cars on the right line: none. There are no cars driving there.

There were some roadworks and we had hoped to hear some music, but unfortunately we haven’t heard or seen anything.

Only 1.5 hours later we got to hear some ‘music’: A Ferrari overtook us in one of the many tunnels and it of course revved up big time. That was fun driving on the road from Genova to Ventimiglia, where we (already!) had to take the exit to Savona.

And, at 17:30 we were (already) at the harbor. Signs of Corsica Ferries everywhere and we saw our ferry, the Corsica Victoria ready to take on the first passengers.

We got there as #3 on the parking lot – so much for being German ;)

Unlike the nice cosy harbor of Nice, this harbor was meant for industry, so not much to “sighsee” in the surrounding of the harbor. So we played handball instead. And then we had to run, because not much later we were already let in to the harbor, to the waiting strip where the cars are sorted for their entrance.

And just before 20h we were let in the ferry, to the top deck this time. We were in front of the last cardeck’s joint, so most likely, we would be on the part that flips down after the bottom row cars have left the ship. But that’s something for tomorrow.

My mom had looked up the layout of the ship beforehand so she kind of knew where we had to go to when we left the car. 2 floors up there was a bar that unlike the Mega Smeralda was closed at night. So we continued to the restaurant which were rables and chairs only. My mom asked and the crew kindly aimed to a further strip on the ship which had nice flat ‘benches’ with flat pillows on it. We could drop off our stuff there and the only annoying thing was actually the TV above us. But my mom had already found the cabling and knew where and how to switch it off if necessary.

Then after we had ‘settled’ we played a few card games which I of course won.
And, at 10h we heard the metal cabling of the ship bouncing against the walls, so we knew we were about to take off.

My mom sent me out to watch our takeoff, and I was caught by the beauty of the moon, reflecting in the water between the other lights of the harbor.

Unlike the Mega Smeralda, where everything vibrates in the sleeping area from the Restaurant, this “small” ship has a very gentle engine sound and as it was just a bit louder than the TV. My mom was vast asleep quickly where I couldn’t sleep and read a book instead. Until I also fell asleep at about 23:15

Corsica 2015 – overview
Next day: 2015.07.30 – Bast!a


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