Thursday, 6 June 2013

Tuesday 4th June 2013 - Thursday 6th June 2013

Our very pleasant elderly French neighbour departs this morning. Unfortunately, we do not speak enough French to have a meaningful conversation, but, it would appear, she is travelling around France alone, in a very elderly Renault van conversion. Full marks to her!

Kathleen indulges in an orgy of clothes washing, which in turn keeps me busy fetching and carrying water, putting up clothes line etc.

I discover, there is a Pizza restaurant and take-away in the town!

After lunch, we cycle along the cycle track from the Aire.

The countryside is quite beautiful, aided by the fact it is a sunny day.

Although the cycle track / footpath is an old railway line, it goes steadily uphill, and for a railway line, the gradient is quite steep.

I mention to Kathleen that, steam

engines must have struggled up this gradient. Her answer "yes, well, this 66 year old is struggling up this gradient too!".

Something tells me, I am going to have difficulty coaxing Kathleen into doing ten miles along this route.

I am quick like that.

But, trading on Kathleen's love for

numbers and order, I manage to coax 6.5 miles along the route, by the simple expedient of only telling her how far we have gone, when we are just at a part number (eg 4.5, 5.5 etc), this works until 6.5, but, no further.

We reach an idyllic little place called Saint-Jal.

Here, there is a Campsite or Aire, I am not sure, the place was deserted, but, there are Electric Hook up points, Toilets, Showers, and refuse disposal. Saint-Jal (N45.399168 E1.645556).

Sadly, there is not a little bar selling cold beer (or Rose).

Kathleen's only reward for peddling 6.5 miles, uphill, in the heat of the afternoon, on a rather bumpy cycle track, without a word of complaint, is a drink of water, whilst taking in the view.

Followed of course, by 6.5 miles of more or less freewheeling, back down

the track, to the Aire at Uzerche.

While Kathleen rests with a cold beer or two, and sunbathes, I decide to top up my Orange-France "Lets Go" internet. I manage the procedure at the Tabac, without too much difficulty. But, dealing with the automated process (in French of course) of registering my top-up, defeats me.

Fortunately some French Campervanners, on the Aire, understand enough of my Pigeon French, to do the deed on my behalf, at least, we both hope they have!

Turns out, they have not. I ask you, if even French people cannot understand the automated telephone service used to register the top up, how do they expect me to?

Wednesday, we leave, and still heading north drive to LHommaize (N46 26.101' E0 35.811').

This is a pleasant little Aire, behind the Town Hall and just far enough off the busy N147 to be quiet.

There is space for about 10 vans, but, only two Electric Hookup points (unmetered), with water and usual emptying facilities (all free).

There are also cared for toilets in the main square, and a very novel "bio toilet" in the nearby children's play park, complete with diagram of how it all works. Kathleen cannot resist using it. I am getting worried, she is becoming obsessed with toilets, even worse than her sister, Joan.

We have a little explore of the village, and spot this rather pink house!

The person who lives there, just has to be a fan of Barbie dolls!

Needless, to say, there is an imposing church, every French village seems to have one, along with a well cared for Town Hall.

As we return from supporting the local businesses (ie the local bar), we are joined by another English couple, in a campervan, so, we will have company for the evening.

Thursday, off and away, bright and early. We are aiming to be just south of Chartres for our next stop.

It is another beautiful sunny day, the journey is painless, apart from ploughing through Tours.

We are heading for an Aire at Marboue (N48 6.744' E1 19.722') , but, for future reference, we pass several Aires as we travel along the N147 and N10.


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