Thursday, 12 September 2013

Marseille, France - Day 1: Bonjour

Saturday 7th September 

One main reason I started blogging was because of my friends and "second family" Mr and Mrs Travels and their two daughters Missy I and Missy S... They moved all the way to China and I wanted to show them what I was up to. But below and behold, China blocks blogging sites like mine, unless people can use another way of using the Internet like using VPN... But nevermind, I still kept blogging for the fun of it, and just in case when or if they came back to the UK or Europe they could finally read all my adventures! :D

After two-ish years, I finally met up with Mrs Travels who is my "sister" and my other best friend from my old university days...We've known each other for more than 10 years!! And I've known Mr Travels ever since they first started dating. ^_^ They returned to Europe!! But moved to Marseille and not London. Mr Travels is French and Mrs Travels is Chinese!

I booked a flight using edreams.com (I seem to be going through various booking sites... edreams.com has probably been the easiest to use so far!). But I hate the way Ryanair and other flying companies keep changing prices every few minutes... It's quite annoying. It's like saying if you don't book it now, we'll increase it the next time you visit in a few minutes time. ¬,¬" Ryanair have charged for nearly everything and I'm travelling alone this time to Stansted Airport... My first time!!

Travelling to Stansted Airport wasn't that hard. I had to get a bus to Liverpool Street Station, and then get a train to the airport. It takes less than an hour to get there (47 minutes and something seconds to be exact). Not Bad!! It was as easy as getting to Gatwick. I think I was blessed to get the 8.12 am train as it was empty, peaceful and quiet... ^_^
Platform 5 on a Saturday morning... so peaceful...
When I arrived I checked in, and I was crossing my fingers that I didn't go over my 15 kg allowance. Thankfully it was only over 12 kg! Phew! Had so many presents for Mr and Mrs Travels and the girls. I passed through security, and there were no problems there. I have travelled so many times within the pass few years, it feels like a drill to me. Take off belt. Take out netbook. Remove bag of liquids. Thankfully I didn't have to take off my shoes like I had to in Houston, Texas!
Heading into Stansted Departure Lounge

Ryanair Planes... yep, was flying with Ryanair
I had a long 2 hour wait, and I knew I would be hungry when I get onto the plane. Flying with low cost airlines means eat before you go aboard as you will need to pay for anything they serve you on the plane. So I ate at Yo! Sushi... Yeah, sushi again... The other places weren't interesting enough for me.
Had a few plates of sushi :)
One thing I must say, Stansted Airport provides free Wi-Fi! Awesome!



Boarding time... I was grateful for leaving rainy London, but I wasn't grateful for queuing in the wrong queue. I was at Gate 43 instead of Gate 42. Seriously, who would want to go all the way to the front to find out if they're in the right Gate... (I tried to, I saw the 4 and the top of the 3 thinking it was a 2)... Stansted or Ryanair need to change their TV screens to show the gate number. Marseille was in small writing and the Ryanair logo was massive and bright. That's stupid. Anybody could have missed their flight with their gate number not being clear, and with everyone standing in front of the window where it shows the number doesn't help either!!!!! I'm sorry to the gentleman who asked me if I was queuing at Gate 42... Whoops!
Rainy London... Bye bye...
Flight wasn't bad. I sat in the aisle. However there are three things that Ryanair need to improve on. 1. Take off (it was rubbish - too much acceleration). 2. Landing (it was rubbish - breaking was so bad, I had to hold onto the seat in front). 3. Welcoming message (pee off! Who cares if you land on time and are better than other airlines, we want better service, like free food and not having to pay to reserve seats! That goes the same with other low cost airlines).

Finally landed, got my luggage and ran out of the exit! I saw my second family waiting for me, but I didn't see them as I was waiting for my luggage... I did a funny exit as the doors closed on me! :D It was then big hugs to everyone, I had missed them so much...
Marseille Provence Airport Control station

Waiting for my luggage and taking pictures of the map of Marseille
My second family first they took me straight into town where they were celebrating their history (I think)... But anyway, I took a few pictures. :D
I think that's the mayor

People dressed up

A memorial for the poet Frederic Mistral

Men on horseback

Great shot? Yeah I think it is too!

They have massive donkeys in France! I though donkeys were supposed to be small!!
Massive donkey!!!

Some sort of bowling game invented in France... very popular over there...
Next we hit the beach in La Couronne (The Crown). Wow. I only just landed and I've already started my actual holiday!!
The beach in La Couronne
I changed into a swimsuit, I bought one to show less of my tummy... But I think the French don't really care too much. I saw old ladies in bikinis, some were quite fit for their age, and some weren't ¬,¬"" heheh. And the same went with some of the men, heheh.

The sea was quite warm, but unfortunately it wasn't that safe to swim in there, as there were a lot of jellyfish in the sea... Mr Travels joked that I brought the British weather with me (as it wasn't cloudy for over a month) and I brought the jellyfish over too!! Hahahahah!!!
Caught lots of jellyfish!!
It was time to go back to their place in Sausset-Les-Pins which is a small town outside of the city centre of Marseille... And I did more swimming in their swimming pool when we got there! Missy I and Missy S are so active. They just love swimming and diving!!
An ant nest near the beach
Finally it was time to eat. Mr Travels' eldest brother made a lot of homemade pizzas!! Miss I and Missy S as well as their two other cousins got involved in making them! :D I think my favourite pizzas were the seafood one and the egg one!! :D
Cheese and Mushroom pizza

Seafood pizza

Egg pizza... the eggs were cooked

A mixture of everything leftover pizza with creme on top!! ^_^ Cool!!
After the kids went to sleep it was catch up time with Mr and Mrs Travels... I think I have missed out on a lot when they were away!

It was then time to go to sleep, and I had the sofa bed in the family's gigantic, marble-floored living room! It was very windy and it rained that night too... A first in a long time for Marseille!

End of Day 1.

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