The Guernsey Ice Cream Caper and Liberation Day!

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Europe » Channel Islands » Guernsey
May 9th 2016
Published: May 12th 2016
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The Guernsey Ice Cream Caper and Liberation Day!

Well, we have been told that Guernsey Cows make the very best ice cream and we are here in the Bailiwick of Guernsey, an island between France and Great Britain, and part of the United Kingdom, to test out that assumption!

Before we get started however, we must take a tender to shore as our ship cannot get close to the dock. Tender after tender loads up 100 people each and heads for shore. We finally board and bounce our way across, for 15 minutes, until the 13th century Castle Cornet at the mouth of St. Peter Harbor comes into view through the mist and we reach the dock.

The day is overcast but really pretty as we make our way, along with our friends Dave and Sharon, to check out the house that Victor Hugo lived in from 1856-1870. It is a steep, narrow street just up from the main shopping area and the docks. It really doesn’t look like much now. It is yellow and 3 stories and part of a long row of connected houses. There is a little plaque in front telling us we have the right home. I must confess that I have never read any of Victor Hugo’s works and now Cope and I are on a mission to do so ;-)

But, we must not forget the real reason we are here…the ice cream ;-) So we head back down the hill toward town… only to find ourselves waylaid by a grocery store. Yep, we have pop in and see what they have. Every grocery always has some new and interesting items. Dave spies some Coke in a green can and we don’t really know what’s in it. It’s in English too and we still can’t quite figure it out… no matter, Dave buys some caffeine free diet coke, Cope gets some M & M’s and we’re on our way again.

We walk a little way more down the hills and dang… here’s the ice cream shop! But… it is only 9:30 in the morning. So we decide to do a little more wandering around and catch up with the ice cream a little later in the day. As we move on down the street we hear a band starting up so we follow the crowds down to the main street where a parade is starting! What fun! Lots of military men and women dressed in their best. It is a celebration for Liberation (from the Nazi’s) Day celebration. There are food and game vendors all along the marina and announcements being made over the loudspeaker. There are families and balloons. Most of the stores are closed as it is a holiday and the church bells are ringing. This is the 4th big celebration we have enjoyed since we have been in Europe!

We move along with the crowds and finally stop in a little store that happens to be open, for a couple of souvenirs. We’re getting g hungry so we decide that it is finally time for ICE CREAM!! UH OH, OH NO… we don’t remember where the shop was… Each of us thinks it was in a different direction…mercy. Okay we start backtracking, how hard can it be to find; this is a very small town, with winding, winding, winding streets up and down hills… where are we anyway? Now the rain has started so we finally… decide to ask for help in a shop. The server seems surprised at the question…the laugh’s us, the Ice Cream shop is only two doors further on.

And then… of course…the power goes out. EVERYWHERE. Stores are dark, cash registers won’t work, but…the parade announcer can still let us know what is going on as his speaker is on a generator. It starts raining even harder.

We find the Ice Cream shop and….despite the dark and power outage they are willing to sell us ice cream but may not be able to make change… fine by us, we’ll figure it out ;-) Okay, a large chocolate mint ice cream later for me and Sharon and a small chocolate for Cope…we are in agreement…Guernsey Cows DO make the very best ice cream… on Guernsey! LOL Mission Accomplished!

Unfortunately the weather is really turning nasty and we must head for the long, long line waiting for the tenders in the pouring rain. We wait for quite a while the line moves slowly…then we come to a complete stop. …nothing…no movement in the line. We are told the swells outside of the protected harbor have increased so they had had to stop the tenders for a while. We wait …in the pouring rain, for quite a while…then…finally… the line starts to move. Yea, it seems that Princess has pressed a local catamaran ferry into service in addition to its own tenders. The ferry is much bigger than the ship’s tenders so can carry more passengers. We’re happy to board the ferry as it can easily handle the large swells. Back to the ship and the end of our “Ice Cream Caper”. ;-)

Additional photos below
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12th May 2016

We are planning on bringing all of our northwest rain gear (rain pants, jackets, etc.) for both our cruise and our 2 weeks in Ireland. Looking forward to Guernsey and never even thought about ice cream. We want to see some of the military installations, but will check out the ice cream too. Have fun.

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