Monday 25 July 2016

Today we had a short walk around the village of Vouvray and then checked with the Tourist office regarding some details of the local geocache walk through the vineyards and found that it would be rather hilly so decided that was out as it was so hot. We picked up details of another son et lumiere spectacle later in the year but who knows where we will be by then! We also need a 12v splitter to replace the broken one, which gives two 12v cigarette lighter sockets instead of one so we can charge the computer and a phone at the same time. There is only one factory fitted 12v electric socket in the motorhome and it makes life difficult. The young lady found a local hypermarket that may have what we require.

When we returned to the motorhome Dorothy just had to take a photograph of this little tree by the side of our motorhome, it looked so pretty in the morning sunshine.

Later in the morning we left Vouvray and headed to Chouzy-sur-Cisse but along the way we missed the turning for the hypermarket. Never mind, and on second thoughts we think that the socket that they had would have been unsuitable anyway.

We arrived in Chouzy-sur-Cisse and had to negotiate some works being done in the narrow streets but all was well and this is where we found ourselves...........

Parked alongside this lake, we think we will enjoy this short stay.


We woke to another lovely sunny day. What a pretty view to wake up to.

We sat beside the lake having our breakfast before going to find the geocache that was not too far away from us. Then, after sitting beside the lake being very idle, watching the local fishermen and people keeping fit running or walking around the lake, we thought we had better get up and do something! So, we took a stroll into the village.

oops, a Church is creeping in here!!

There were two boulangeries, a post office, two hairdresser's, a chemist and a newsagent and bar, even a little well stocked cornershop, although expensive, along the main street.

A point that interests Allan is that even in the smallest villages such as this one,

there are defibrillator machines hung in the town centres and at sports grounds. It is a fact that the French Marie looks after the population very well.


We have found out that yesterday morning a priest was murdered in a suburb of Rouen called Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray and we send our condolences and sympathy to all concerned.

A few days ago we mentioned that we need to be vigilant wherever we are. This brings it right home to us, as it was there in Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray that last year we spent 4 nights in an hotel whilst our clutch was being replaced by a local garage. Although our hotel was on the edge of the town and we never had an opportunity to visit the centre-ville and it's church, we might have done. It just goes to show that you never know what may happen next, or where.

We left the lake at Chouzy-sur-Cisse and headed towards Meung-sur-Loire, a town that we had visited last year. Along the way we spotted a Motorhome dealer on the edge of a town called Mer. As it was about lunch time we decided to stop outside and have lunch until they opened again for the afternoon at 2 pm. When the place was opened we went into the shop and purchased a 12v splitter for the phones and computer and then had a look around their motorhomes for sale but as usual, European motorhomes are very basic, without oven, draining board, microwave, awning or even good kitchen space and we found that nothing there compared to the motorhome that we already have.

We travelled on further to a large E Leclerc at Beaugency. Allan went for a look around and found in the motoring section a better 12 v splitter with USB sockets and in fact slightly cheaper. The one just purchased then seemed rather disappointing. Although unsure of what the French consumer rights are, Allan thought he would return to the motorhome dealer for a refund. Well, he would give it a try. Allan explained that unfortunately their device was not suitable and he was returning it unopened and wanted a refund. They were not happy but eventually refunded the money, so now we have a 12v splitter to charge the computer and 2 USB sockets for the phones from E Leclerc. The new device had 5 little led lights so these had to be disconnected to save power consumption.

After shopping at E Leclerc we travelled on to another motorhome dealer that we had visited last year, at Meung-sur-Loire, just to be nosy at some more continental style motorhomes. After viewing the motorhomes we were disappointed that the shop was just on closing time. So after that we went 4 miles to spend the night at the village of Dry (weird name for a village) which is the nearest aire we could find to the spectacle we were going to on Friday in Clery. Heading to Dry we found ourselves following the signs to the Spectacle, which we thought was odd as we were travelling away from Clery?

After settling in we took a first stroll into the village and found a Bar/Restaurant which was selling tickets for the Spectacle. We found it was a 5 minute drive away and not at Clery!


Today, during the morning we had very drizzly rain. So now the village called Dry is wet (just had to get that one in). Hope that this doesn't continue for tomorrow's show.

We have now booked our ferry tickets home from Calais to Dover. This is not the cheapest crossing that we could find so that is a new experience for Allan who is usually an old skinflint and booked the cheapest ferry even if it is in the middle of the night. We understand that there are problems at the channel ports but with a little luck that should all be finished when we travel so we should be alright. So, we return to England on August the 9th at 7.55 pm on the Pride of France. This ferry makes Dorothy very happy as it is vastly larger than the Newhaven ferries. It is 48 thousand tons and is more like a bridge over the English Channel than a ship sailing on it and the crossing will be smooth. We hope!!

Allan made a phone call to the Motorhome repair garage at Johns Cross in Sussex to get us booked in for Thursday the 18th of August for our repairs. During our short stay in England we will also have the MOT done. It will be two months early but it will save another ferry crossing in October.

We decided to take a walk out to where the Spectacle was due to take place tomorrow. However, we decided it was a bit too far to walk there and back, especially if the weather could be a bit "iffy" and it would be dark, walking along roads with no street lighting. So tomorrow evening we will drive and hope we can stay there overnight.


Tonight we have booked tickets for a Son et Lumiere. The weather is very warm but cloudy. At least it is not raining so fingers crossed for tonight.

A spot of geocaching in the afternoon proved pretty pointless as they were either missing and not there to be found or we are getting hopelessly bad at finding them! Reading the logs we then found that others could not find them also, so we suggest they have gone missing.

During our walk we took some photos of artworks, birdhouses and bug-hotels.

We were impressed with this bus stop. All this lay-by, raised kerb and shelter, bearing in mind that there are only two buses, the 08.30 and the 17.15 each day!

In the early evening we drove over to the park where the show was taking place and found that we are allowed to stay overnight, so that is a bonus. We had a meal and showers and then went to pick up our tickets and see what the pre-show arrangements were.

Usually there is plenty to see but on this occasion there was not, so after taking a look at the scenery set up and only finding a stall selling programmes and trinkets and a little soft drinks and snack stall, we decided to spend the next hour back at the motornome.

Then we took our seats and waited for the show to begin.

The show was very good but in the previous shows that we have been to in France there has been much more action, colour and costumes. This show involved a few battle scenes but there was way too much "set" scenes and talking - of course in French.

Between each scene change they had a couple of "humorous characters" chatting and making jokes whilst the next 8 meter long stage was being rolled out. In other shows they just had the next setting on the grass and highlight it with a spotlight or two. There were obviously very "in jokes". Allan is not too sure how Brexit features in the year 1515 in France with Francois 1st, King Henry and Leonardo da Vinci but this evening it did!!

As it was their 20th year celebration they showed on the big screen some film of previous years and these seemed to be bigger and better than this year. Oh well never mind! We had a good time. And the show ended with an extremely good fireworks display and a 20th year Anniversary cake was brought on by the two "humorous characters". Everyone involved in the show, from scenery shifters to car parking volunteers were invited "out front" to join in the celebrations (as can be seen from the yellow jackets in the photo below!) which was a lovely thing to do.

After the show when all the cars left and we settled in for the night, very loud music and flashing lights were coming from the showground. No-one told us that the cast would be having an after-show celebration nor did they tell us it would go on until past 3 a.m.!! We can't say it was an end of show celebration as they still have three more shows to do! Needless to say we got to sleep very late on a rather hot night.


Now we start the long journey north. To that frozen little island of the north coast of Europe. However, it will be warm and sunny as we will be seeing family and friends again. And we can't wait to see our little Scarlett and find out how much she has changed.

After a few hours of travelling and what seemed a longer spell shopping we finally arrived at Milly-la-Foret, South-East of Paris and leaving about 240 miles to cover in the next week. Such a little distance in the scheme of things but we don't like to travel for more than an hour or so at a time, but from now on we are going to have to. Taking the P&O ferry from Calais on Tuesday evening means we can get home for Wednesday to spend a full day with Mum before she goes into hospital on Thursday.

We found the Aire with a bit of difficulty as it was not signposted. It was a functional Aire but well laid out with large, designated spaces.

Phone calls and texts to family ended off the day.


Its a bit overcast this morning, so what will we do today? Reading, rug-making? Not a lot really!

During the evening we sat out chatting to our neighbours, a lovely German lady named Ingrid and a French lady called Brigitte (who was a Paris Metro Driver). It is strange but German, French and English people in France and the international language is of course ENGLISH.

A very pleasant evening and everyone is happy.


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