Monday 11th July 2016
Today we wish our Great, Great Nephew Oliver a very Happy 1st Birthday.
Having cycled twice around the lake before, although it was a bit cloudy and windy today, we cycled twice around again this morning so we must be getting fitter.
During the evening we had a phone call to mum back home in Seaford. Her phone kept cutting off and although we could hear her she could not hear us. Apparently this is a known fault but they can't rectify it at the moment. After several call backs and loud voices (!) we ascertained that Mum has had some tests relating to her forthcoming operation and is now awaiting the results.
We also messaged James and Frankie but they did not reply so we assume and trust that they are all OK.
Later Allan thought that we had a missed call from Mr Bishop, our property maintenance man. However, it was the other way round and apparently Allan had called him by accident. After we had found out what had happened and it was only Allan playing around with his phone, we checked that everything was OK with our property in Newhaven and the new roof was finished. Allan transferred some money from our bank account and settled the bill for the new Glass fibre roof. Let's hope that it lasts a lifetime and there is no more expense there.
The weather has turned a bit colder today. Full horizon to horizon cloud cover. We are still in shorts but it is only 15 degrees centigrade. This is not how it is supposed to be - we want sunshine and even more sunshine.
The workers are cutting the grass and making everything nice for the National Day celebrations tomorrow.
We had a lazy day as tomorrow will be quite busy.
Messaged James again this evening when we thought he would be back from work. We were sorry to her that our grandaughter is poorly with a viral infection and send her big hugs and cuddles and hope she is better really soon.
We said our goodbyes to Nigel and Debbie as they will be leaving tomorrow morning.
Today we went to the Wednesday market in the town. It is quite a good size market really but you need to be careful of any purchases as although there are a few bargains not all of the produce is first quality and some is in fact more expensive than the supermarket. Some clothes are really cheap and it makes you wonder how tiny were the children's hands that sewed that lot together for a bowl of rice after an 18 hour day. On the way back we went into the Tourist Information office and picked up a few leaflets and found some more info about parking in Le Mans. We probably wont get to Le Mans this trip but their cathedral lights look really fabulous and we may go there on the way back or even on our next trip.
After returning to the Aire and dropping of our market shopping we went to the E Leclerc supermarket to do the real shopping as they would be closed tomorrow for the holiday. Afterwards our next shopping experience was in a frozen food store called Picard. The food was of a good quality and they had some lovely ice-creams. Dorothy is not too keen on ice-cream, preferring it when it is just melting. In the heat of today there was a very good chance that it would be melted before we got back to the motorhome parked beside the lake.
After dinner we went to the firework
display at the beach further along the lake. We found a nice place to put our
chairs and settled down to wait for the display to start at about 11 pm.
Once darkness fell the sky and the lake were lit up by a really good display of fireworks accompanied by the usual music.
Our phone camera does not do it justice but we hope you will get a flavour of the evening from these photos.
Although their National Holiday is tomorrow they have the fireworks the evening before, I guess that is so that they can have a lie in tomorrow without having to go to work.
Today we wish Grant and Gaynor a very Happy Wedding Anniversary.
After the late night yesterday we spent a relaxing morning sitting beside the lake and Dorothy did some of her rug and Allan read his book. We sent a message to James and Frankie to see how Scarlett was.
The park gradually became very busy today with families and friends all making use of the facilities and having picnics by the lake. It was lovely to be a part of it all.
Our fisherman friend came to do some fishing in the afternoon so it probably won't be restful as he usually catches some giant fish which causes a lot of interest and plays a game of Boules with our neighbour Andy with much jocularity.
During the afternoon David, another of our neighbours here, asked us if we knew that our E-mail link on the website was not working. Don't be silly of course it works. Just to prove it and make sure Allan checked it out and sure enough he was right and it was not working. The website, blog and everything was changed last year in May to another company as the original one was having difficulty. This was done in such a hurry and we got it up and running in less than a week. But It seems that the E-mail address part was set up wrong and so has never been working properly since the changeover. Just when you think everything is perfect and there are no worries, then someone says something and it all goes haywire and there is a lot of work to do correcting the website.
It is just as well that no one thinks of trying to contact us because unless they could remember our address or send an Email as a reply, any mail since our website problem last year would not have come through via the website link.
After a busy few hours this afternoon the E-mail address has now been set properly and all the links on the main pages are working. Just in case any one can't find it on our website and Blog our main E-mail is:
Now just wait and see how much spam, adverts, porn and general rubbish that we receive but please note that our spam blocker will reject it straight away and anyone sending spam will be blocked.
Gosh, after all that it was time
for our evening meal of huge pan-fried tuna steaks, potatoes, courgettes and
After our meal, there we were, just sitting and relaxing, enjoying the evening sunshine.
Suddenly there was a lot of smoke coming from a motorhome on the other side of the Aire. What on earth is happening have they burnt the toast. Then the woman came rushing out shouting for help as her motorhome was on fire. Allan rushed to get out our fire extinguisher and dashed across to see what he could do along with several other people, including our two young fisherman friends who came running with their buckets full of water. A lot of smoke was pouring out of the water heater vent. Allan tried to use the extinguisher and when eventually he got it working it was not working very efficiently. They managed to stop the fire and no-one was hurt thank goodness, although they all had smoke inhalation but nothing too serious. Their cat was a bit dazed when they carried it out. Although a lot of smoke there appeared to be little in the way of fire damage but it has obviously caused them great distress and expense. After they had composed themselves the motorhome owners came and thanked everyone who had helped them and insisted on replacing all the used fire extinguishers before they were able to leave to get the motorhome attended to. A sad end to their day but at least everyone was safe.
We try to keep our distance from other motorhomes for this very reason but as you will have seen from some of our previous photos, the continental people do like to park very "cosily".
Later it was discovered that, in his haste to get at the fire extinguisher, Allan has pulled out some of the screws on the the hinges of a cupboard door. Another little repair job!
Later Dorothy met and chatted with the couple who had moved in next to us and we had a nice evening with them.
We woke this morning to hear the dreadful news of the horrific incident in Nice late last night. Our thoughts are with everyone caught up in this terrible attack.
It was comforting to see that James messaged us to check that we were not affected in any way. We assured him that we were nowhere near Nice as we were still in La Fleche. My brother had also put Mum's mind at rest assuring her of the same. However, we all need to be vigilant as an attack can happen anywhere at any time.
It was a sombre start to the day, with everyone talking about Nice and how it had affected them as some had family and friends there.
Gradually the park and beach started to get busy with people determined to carry on and enjoy their "le pont" day as best they could. I think that we have said it before but "le pont" is a day that bridges between a holiday and the weekend making what we would call a "long weekend".
We messaged James today and rang Mum and Tony. We said our goodbyes to our neighbours who were leaving today.
Today we start 3 days of National Mourning here in France.
Anne and Andrew and David and Pauline left early this morning before we were out and about. Perhaps they have gone for the day or so as they did not come and say cheerio.
Dorothy busied herself with the laundry as there was a gentle breeze so it should be a good drying day. Allan fetched the rinse water from our water store and set up a small washing line. We had just finished lunch when one of our friends here "Kit Car Dave" arrived. He stayed for a drink and we chatted the afternoon away whilst our washing dried in the sun. He also asked where the others were but we did not know. We said our goodbyes as we were thinking of moving on, possibly tomorrow, and we will probably see him again in the future as he spends the summer in a village not far from La Fleche where he has a chalet.
Late afternoon we made a trip to E Leclerc and also to the Frozen Food shop for more icecream!
This morning we made
up our minds and decided to leave the lake after being here for 15 nights.
One last look.......
We left and went into La Fleche to fill up the water and do everything else and then we left for the small village of Cre where there was to be a Vide Grenier (like a table sale or car boot without the cars!). It was only a few miles along the road but the place was so small that our satnav didn't have it. When we arrived in Cre we found that the satnav did have it but with a slightly different spelling, seems impossible with just three letters but anyway, by that time we were now looking for where the action was. We were keeping a lookout for a large field.
We drove along a narrow one-way road heading to the centre of the little village as we had now seen some direction pointers. We quickly found out that this was not a good idea!!!!! The little main square and surrounding streets had been blocked off and this was where the vide grenier was - all around the village! The only possible exit was blocked with a parked car, although even without the car we are not certain the motorhome would have scraped through. Scraped being the operative word here! What do we do now??? Cars were backing up behind us and everyone going nowhere. We could not believe that the direction pointers were taking traffic this way. The traders and organisers all found this highly amusing and helped us by removing barriers, tables and things for sale so that we could turn around and then they guarded the one-way street stopping the traffic, to let Allan drive back the way that we had come in. Dorothy was left to help the villagers put everything back and whilst all this was happening she could here a running commentary over their speaker system and a lot of hilarity from the villagers and their visitors. Dorothy then had to walk back down the one way street on her own. She was not pleased that Allan did not wait for her as she had no idea where he had gone but the villagers were so helpful that it was impossible to wait.
Eventually we found a place to park outside the school and Marie so we walked back to the village where we thanked everyone who had helped us earlier. Allan then spotted the beer tent so we went and had a much needed beer!
The village sale was quaint and very French. The stuff being sold was really a lot of useless junk (says Allan) but Dorothy did find the Sarthe Craft Association stalls and was very interested in the cross-stitching work.
At the end of the street was a horse and cart ride and we spoke to a young family who were waiting for a ride. The young daughter was learning English and sometimes it is helpful for them to hear English spoken without the French accent of a French teacher. Possibly what is not good is that Allan speaks with a "Sarf Lunden" and Southern accent!
After a while the horse and carts
and we saw the family off on their cart ride...............
and then we walked back via the little park by the river
and then into the main square again where another beer was definitely required by us both.
Afterwards we headed back to the
motorhome for a meal and a rest before we returned to the park for the fireworks
in the evening.
At 11 pm the fireworks started but earlier than that the mosquitoes were out and they were hungry. We now have a repellent bracelet and a keyfob buzzer to keep them away but it seems that no one has told these mosquitoes that they don't like citron and high pitched squeaky noises because they didn't work. Allan had 5 bites on his back.
The fireworks were quite good really, especially as this is such a small village and before and after them a pop group in a marquee tent entertained everyone.
A very mixed week, ending with Allan cursing and chasing off mosquitoes............