It’s arrived! The time has come for my visit to the German capital, Berlin. As I write, I am sitting in a hotel room near London’s Gatwick Airport, having eaten in the hotel’s restaurant following the drive down from Fairford.
I left Fairford just after 17:00 and headed out to the M4 to the Gatwick Worth hotel in Crawley. Traffic was slow approaching the A419/M4 roundabout and again on the A329(M) for about a mile heading in to Bracknell, but otherwise it was a clear run all the way.
In the event of bad traffic I would have been prepared to stop at all the service stations but the empty motorways meant that I stopped just once. After 90 minutes of driving I reached Bracknell where I stopped for 30 minutes to get a drink and to stretch my legs. Generally speaking I do enjoy driving long distances but I don’t like to drive for more than about an hour without stopping.
Getting back on the road at 19:00, I headed out of town towards the M3, negotiated the roadworks there and joined the M25. It was the first time I have driven on the M25 and not been stuck in traffic at all! Even at 9 o’ clock on a Saturday morning, there is normally a queue for a couple of junctions after joining. But tonight I got on the London Orbital, put my foot down.and left it down until I got off the M23.
Driving alone at night, my car radio tuned to LBC (on DAB for the first half of the journey then switching to FM once within range of London). Iain Dale, Clive Bull and newsreader Phillip Chryssikos kept me company… I learned to drive without having the radio on once but since I’ve been driving alone on a regular basis, I couldn’t drive without a car radio on!
I ate in the hotel’s restaurant – sausage and mash which was very tasty! And now I’ve retired to my room where I am watching I’m A Celebrity on ITV +1.
My alarm is set for 03:15 – with a flight at 06:30, I want to be in the car by 4 at the latest in order to get to the Airport with enough time to park up and get in to the terminal building.
I’m going to shut down my laptop for the night, power down most of the the lights, and climb in to that very comfortable looking bed.