Dawn broke early again. Seems to be something of a habit. Either that or it’s accident-prone. Once again the sky was blue, the sun was golden and warm, and it was totally calm. However the hotel is silent. Everyone is slumbering deeply. So deeply in fact that the teachers are struggling to get anyone to wake up. After some serious thundering on the doors the sound of showers, hairdryers and hair straighteners was echoing along the floors. Yes, the boys were up and about. With a little more persuasion the girls surfaced too and almost everyone made it down to breakfast on time. However, we discovered some blanket bandits. Four boys who shall not be named (Martin, Blair, Jack and Finlay) managed to go back to sleep after someone in the room answered the knock. Martin got the blame for that one although he denies it. Perhaps we should call him the Lie-In King
Morning : The Mer de Glace
Making lunches proved to be painless. Everyone got to choose and make their own sandwiches from a range of meats and cheeses. Fruit, eggs, crisps, salad stuff, tuna – all disappeared into bags. Looking at the weather everyone was reminded about the need for liberal use of suncream – well needed as it turned out. So onto the bus where Graeme was our driver for the day and off to Chamonix.
The journey was short and sweet with us arriving at the main car park in Chamonix in time to buy tickets and get on to the 10:00 a.m. funicular. The journey up was rather crowded, more like battery egg production the coaches were so full. The early train was full of climbers and walkers setting off into the mountains. So we squashed on to the seats and the train climbed the valley side to the station at the Mer de Glace. It was 28 degrees and we enjoyed the walk down to the ice caves. The ice sculptures were really good and several of our people had their photos taken with a St Bernard dog. After the walk back up tothe station we had lunch and then took the 12:30 train back to the station in Chamonix. By now temperatures had climbed to 32 degrees and the sun was beating down even more strongly than yesterday.
Afternoon : Parc de Loisirs
Then it was time for the luge. A queue of impatient pupils formed ready for the off. After hearing instructions on safe use of the sleds they were away. A really good time was had by all. There were some fairly tentative first runs from those who’d never been on the luge before. Rumour was that Mrs Hogg’s sled even left a silver trail on the way down. However, second runs were far faster and there were some very exhilarated faces. A few scrapes but no-one fell off or broke anything. Other attractions proved popular – the jet slide, the twister, the sky ride amongst others. Then it was back to the bus and on the road again.
However we then fell foul of the French motorway system. We arrived at Junction 20 to turn off to our village. Oh no, the motorway exit was closed with no advance warning. So we went on to the next exit only to find we couldn’t get across to the carriageway on the other side. Did our drivers resort to their tom-tom or the road atlas ? No – 30 year’s experience came to the fore. We meandered through some very picturesque scenery till we got back to our hotel. Were we entertained ? Well yes. Debbie was singing – don’t give up the day job, Debbie. She describes her singing as ‘awesome” – now who’s going to contradict her. Form an orderly queue please.
Time up to dinner was spent in a variety of ways. Some adventurous souls decided to go for a ‘short run’ with Miss Angus, our tame marathon runner. Better them than me. Others, just like yesterday, decided to play football. Five minutes into the game and we had our first accident of the trip. Two boys tripped over each other and Martin split his knee. Result – the sympathy and attention from all the girls, a trip to the local hospital for three stitches, a late tea for him and Miss McCredie and no more football this week. Dinner – home-made pizza with thick cheese and multiple other toppings. Goodfella’s eat your heart out.
And so to bed with clouds drifting lazily across the twilight sky………………
Quotes Of The Day
“Wow, that’s high !!” (on reaching the top of the valley and looking down to the valley floor many hundreds of metres below).
“That must be about the same as Prestonpans to London.” (when seeing a sign that it was 200 km from Chamonix to Geneva. Glad to see the Geography Department’s efforts are so effective).
Using Our French – Example One
“Miss McCredie, how do you ask for a Cornetto ?”
” Un cornetto s’il vous plait”
“Well did you use that ?”
“No I pointed.”