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Matt's Home2001 - A Corsican OdysseyThe Odyssey Begins


2001 - A Corsican Odyssey

The Odyssey Begins |

They say that every great adventure begins with a journey and so did this! Corsica may be the nearest Mediterranean Island to the UK, but it didn't stop us taking 2 days to reach the start of the GR20... 2 of the longest days of my life...

We started by catching the Eurostar at some ludicrous hour, arriving in Paris before 9, giving us a day for sightseeing. That is, all of us except Alf who was looking for a bank instead... Alf, as organised as ever hadn't brought any money and we spent half the day looking for a cashpoint that would accept his dodgy, half-broken bank card... Oh the joy when he sighted a HSBC in some Parisian back street!

Such joy wasn't to last though, an equally dodgy french baguette laid waste first to Alf, then to Tony and the rest of the day was spent in the toilets of the Gare de Lyon, which were surprisingly accomodating, although it did cost Alf a small fortune...

The next adventure was the overnight TGV to Nice, on which I didn't get a wink of sleep, for fear of falling off the top bunk, although it did mean I got up early to see the beautiful sunrise as we continued our journey south.

Nice, despite the name, isn't all that nice - the beach is a jumble of rocks and when that's the main attraction, you know you're in trouble. We ran out of things to do mid-morning, having already climbed the massive headland overlooking the Bay (and to be fair, we were rewarded with a spectacular view). We were seriously tempted to go back up, just for something to do... Instead we decided to be very British and stroll along the Promenade, only to be harrassed by an African immigrant who said that the French were all racists unlike the kind Brits who loved Frank Bruno... ahhhh Nice...

That evening we took the overnight ferry to Calvi and again I didn't get much sleep, instead watching the stars and the huge red moon; I'd never seen anything like it, as big as a football, low in the horizon and a deep resonate red, I'll never forget it!

Finally, we arrived in Corsica and were just a train and coach ride from the start of the GR20. Ironically, I fell asleep on the train and was woken to everyone laughing... I'd been dribbling... but at least I'd had some kip and was ready for the GR20...

Locations Visited: London, Paris, Nice

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