Josiane and Christian are RV fans. Left in January for a trip to Morocco, because of the Covid-19, they have been stuck at the border for two months with thousands of other French campers.
Departure from Algeciras or Tangier. Towards Sète. Towards Genoa. And now to Marseille. Christian Le Couster knows the maritime connections by heart between Morocco and Europe.
In love with Morocco
For the past two months, he has been stuck at the Moroccan border and has had time to look at the timetables of the various companies… “Not really two months,” he says.
Not really two months,” he says. “Not really two months,” he says. “At first we took it lightly, we said to ourselves, ‘Come on, an extra month’s holiday isn’t so bad. Besides, we love Morocco ! »
Josiane and Christian are not on their first trip to the country. There have been breaks, but they’ve been coming back every winter for about ten years. “In the beginning, we took the plane from Beauvais, then we left from Rennes, and now we come here by camper van.
The diversity of what we find in this country, the landscapes between the north and the south has seduced them. “The meeting with the people, especially. They are so nice here.
The couple have attended weddings, made friends here, and are happy to see them on every trip. The pensioner still manages to joke:
But I’m not sure we’ll be back next year! »
Distress of the Elders
Christian and Josiane, 70 and 71 years old, left for Morocco for a 3 months trip by motorhome in mid-January. They have been stuck there since the borders closed on March 13th.
We were confined in our motorhome, on a parking lot, on the seaside between Agadir and Casablanca. We were not allowed to move from there.
And every two days, we came to disinfect their camper van at the karcher.
But the locals are really nice: an association came to distribute couscous once a week and the local farmers gave us vegetables”.
Christian ended up making his own courgette seedlings in plastic bottles cut in half, so that he would have something to plant in his garden when he returned to Ploufragan.
The hardest thing is that we have to manage on our own, we have no news, neither from the embassy nor from the company: the reserved boats are cancelled two days later. Some manage to get on board, others don’t, without anyone understanding the reasons”.
According to the couple, the English, Germans and Dutch all left. There is still a majority of French people.
There are still at least 4,000 of us to wait”.
Departure planned for the 27th
What weighs on Josiane and Christian is the distress of the people around them.
There are people over 80 years old, who don’t have the internet on their phone or applications like WhatsApp to call their loved ones. They suffer from the heat and isolation even more than we do! »
After an abortive attempt to leave on 16 May, hired by their son-in-law, the retired couple managed to sign up for a boat from Tangier to Marseille.
“It’s the first time we’ve seen an affair of this kind! “Christian is surprised. And the boat doesn’t appear on any other site.
Josiane, stressed out, registers despite everything for 1,200 €. A coquettish sum. Thereafter, no news. In the car park, a neighbour is delighted to have been able to get a ticket as well.
Josiane then calls the company in France.
It was Ascension Thursday: I managed to reach the operator on her personal phone. As it was a public holiday, she was teleworking”.
Good news: the operator confirmed the validation of Josiane and Christian’s ticket. They will leave on Wednesday 27 May. “As we had her personal number, we gave the right tip to our neighbors so that they too can find a solution.
After completing the formalities to obtain the right to travel to Tangier, our camper van drivers set off. Christian regrets:
For the papers, there again we had to manage. In this whole story, it’s only the D system”.
At the moment he is talking to us, he is approaching Tangier. The light at the end of the tunnel. But the tension is at its peak.
They’ve seen so many of their comrades being turned back that Josiane and Christian are waiting to really be on the boat and finally claim victory.
For this crossing, we are nearly 400 camper vans to wait and there will be only 250 or 300 places! Some come with the wrong tickets. But they try their luck. “It can pass”, they tell us.
Christian is confident. “It’s the first time that a boat has been specially chartered for Marseille and that the government is moving: they have hijacked a ferry that was supposed to sail from Marseille to Corsica”. So this time they believe it.
“Everything has its limits,” the couple acknowledges. And even if Morocco remains a real favourite, they will be happy to enjoy the iodized sunshine in their home in Val-André on their return home.