Could this possibly be the last of this travelogue? We must read on to see the answer of this and I suggest you get comfortable before starting.
So, we quickly settled into the routine, beach, bar, beer but this was not enough. Oh-no! We were on a history package tour of the Low Lands and Mr. Morris knew of some other little foreign sounding place just down the road(you could actually have walked if you did not have Adam and Annette in tow) that was one of Europes best walled cities of the 'Star Fort ' variety.
With little effort we rode on down to find there was yet another pathetic sort of fair thing going on, but we managed to park up and have a saunter around most of the walls. It was quite impressive but lacked any real signs of life. It was so quiet you could have heard a gnat fart at ten paces.
Was that all then? NO! There was more! We had not done the dunes!!! How could we do Dunkirk and not pay homage to the dunes that thwarted the Luftwaffe in 1940. So while the car was out we rode back round to the other end of Dunkirk and found someplace to park up right on the edge of the dunes. The plan was quick stroll through the dunes down to the beach then back to the bar. Reasonable enough by any holiday makers standards, even a vetran of tow student route marches round Berlin.
Alas - it was not to be! In best Beau Geste tradition we trundled up one dune after another thinking we would at least be able to see the sea from the top of the next one, and all in vain. After about 40 minutes hard slog up and down sand dunes we came to the conclusion we were never going to reach the sea before the sun set, and so reluctantly headed back towards the car followed by circling vultures.
There were masses of huge dunes - you could have hidden three armies there and nobody would have found them. I was surprised we never found some 85 year old veteran asking us if it was his turn to go yet. Quite an experience.
Anyway, it was time to go back to the bars and we had settled for a favourite about half way down the sea front that had quite a nice view of a waitresses front. So while we were eating and trying to decide what to drink we decided to drink our way through the beer list. no big deal they only had six that contained any reasonable level of alcohol. My lot fell upon Desperado and I was very happy to find not only was it a nice lime flavoured refreshing lager type beer but also contained a heafty wallop of Tequila too. This was my beer of the week outside of the Belgian beer Paschendale that Andrew kept knocking back, and even that lacked the refreshment factor at high temperatures.
I noticed that the waitress was not married and pointed the fact out to Andrew but nothing came of it. Pity because she was a nice bird, scoring 8/10 on the Dianne scale of crumpet rating. Very pleasant, attractive, smiling and hard working and quick on her feet with the beers. What more could a man ask for?
All too soon our stay in Dunkirk was over. We even had a nose around the old market that was supposed to be the bees knees in markets but it was only division 3 materiel compared to bilston market and local car boot sales.
All packed up we set off to Calais planning to get a car full of Paschendale beer to drink in Englands pleasant greenery, but all the so calle hyper-beer markets we found were geared up to southern carling Black label swigging louts. Who in there right mind is going to travel over to france for some crappy UK canned beers? They were robbing you blind on credit cards and currency exchange too, but of course we had enough dosh to pay for the few Leffe beers we managed to find lurking in a corner.
And so we set sale with a wealth of happy memories of Charlotte's Baps and Belgian beers, with a small chunk of Plage des Allies that will be for ever in England. It was an uneventful crossing an journey back home apart from the obligatory hold up and snail pace traffic on the M25. All in all a jolly good adventure I think you will agree and one that may one day be repeated. But, please, do not limit yourselves to the vicarious pleasures of travel, get out there and experience the thrills of Dunkirk, Waterloo, Agincourt and the unforgetable Charlotte'sbaps for yourself. I think there's a money of voucher in next weeks Mother's Own.