One for the road, sir?

The time has come to sell my car. It really is going to be quite difficult this one as I have had some of my best motoring experiences ever with this car.

It’s currently getting pampered with some TLC in preparation, but before I surrendered my car to its next owner, I wanted a parting memory that would be fresh for ages. I made this decision very last minute and decided to take a gentle drive to France and back.

Journey started by punching a random location into the Satnav – taking me about 50 miles north of Paris. As always with France, the Autoroutes aren’t much to write home about. Apart from the obligatory launches from each toll-booth (encouraged behaviour by the booth operators), the otherwise monotonous activity of covering ground space across 100’s of miles of concrete road is pretty dull.

After a night in a local hotel, my return journey would be back home, but with some choice options selected on the sat nav – notably ‘avoid motorways’ and ‘shortest route’.

What followed was a medley of beautiful roads, stunning weather and idyllic French rural countryside. A combination of A and B type roads, most were furnished with what appeared to be newly laid tarmac. This made it possible to really stretch the legs on the GT3, allowing me to cruise and coast from various speeds between 100 and 150mph (all private roads, bien sur!). As if planned, turned out this day was a French national holiday so the roads were practically deserted. It really was a fantastic, low effort, fast paced drive across beautiful pastures.

I stopped at one point at this fantastic master-bakers in some villiage in the middle of god knows where and had some incredible olive bread for lunch. I added to my car a huge loaf of local, fresh bread for delivery back home, put on my ‘Urgent Bread Delivery’ stance and made fast progress across the remainder of the journey.

As always, I am utterly in awe of the car, with it’s sweet exhaust note punching holes in the otherwise quiet ambience of French countryside, soundwaves bouncing off trees as I pass them creating a gausian blur photoshop landscape. Flashbacks of computer games are momentarily provided as I see similarities between some of the arrow straight roads and their digital representations.

I’m also forever contemplating the freedom we actually enjoy on the roads. Despite cries of opression, there is still a lot we take for granted. Most of Europe is wonderfully unpoliced and free from the technologies of capture and prosecution. I wonder that if we were to look back in 30 years time, how much will we live for the past?

Still, it’s the now that counts and I’m having a hoot enjoying one of life’s most rewarding experiences.

May 22nd 2009