With our step safely back on board we drove to Locmariaquer at the end of one of the arms that form the Golf Du Morbihan.
After a look round and a walk along the beach we went back to Auray, then on to Vannes, dodging round the “Route Barré” signs for the half marathon that was being run that afternoon. We ate our lunch overlooking the river in Vannes then went down the other arm to Port de Crouesly.
We looked at the hundreds of gorgeous sailing boats moored in the marina then walked past the harbour entrance round the headland to Port-Navalo; fewer, less posh boats.
We took photos across the entrance of where we’d been in the morning and then, due to the fact that Ann-Marie had stubbed her little toe on a tree root and needed some sympathy, we had an ice-cream on the way back.
We then set of westward again looking for a night stop. Ann-Marie came up trumps on the navigation department by picking out the perfect spot.
We were on the Vilaine estuary, pulled off the road on the river bank, with the gentlest of waves lapping the shore about 20’ from our door. Dave made a little camp fire on the shore and we watched the sun set into the sea then ate campfire toast and chocolate digestives while the stars came out.
The next morning, Monday, dawned with a mist over the river and a Cormorant flying display. We gave marks out of ten for pairs synchronisation and wave skimming.
A quick breakfast then off again, leaving Brittany behind and heading south into the Pays De La Loire. Round the headland at Piriac and through the salt marshes surrounding Guerande; colourful wheelbarrows and heaps of drying salt around the tidy productive ones, egrets and wading birds picking through others. Through La Baule with its fantastic beach that Ann-Marie remembered from a childhood holiday; then it had big crashing waves, on Monday it was like a mill pond. On to St-Nazaire where we turned south across the spectacular suspension bridge over the mouth of the Loire.
We stopped for lunch at L’Ermitage on the Cote de Jade. The tide was right out so we walked down the long flat beach out to the sea and picked some mussles for tea. (If this is the last post, you’ll know why!)
We carried on down the Atlantic coast through Pornic, Bourgneuf, Fromentine and St-Jean-de-Monts, finally stopping at St-Giles-Croix-de-Vie where, thanks to three different supermarkets, we finally managed to get our gas supply sorted out. If anyone is thinking of going abroad for an extended period and is relying on bottled gas it’s worth knowing that the (commonly available in the UK) Calor Gas 7kg blue butaine bottles don’t exist. In fact Calor Gas doesn’t exist. You need to get a contract with a French gas company, hire a bottle and change your regulator. (And find a little gubbins adaptor-thingy; hence the supermarkets.) Then you have to carry the French bottle around inside the van ‘cos it won’t fit in the gas locker and you’ve got two empty Calor Gas bottles in there anyway. More stuff cluttering the place up.
We decided that after three nights on the side of the road it was time for a campsite so after a walk round the town and another ice cream (Ann-Marie’s toe still hurt) we set off again. We stopped at one or two closed sites before finding one that looked open at Brem-sur-Mer. The barriers were up but the reception was closed. It was getting late, so we drove in, found a pitch and set up, closely followed by a French van doing the same thing.
It’s a very pleasant site, lovely showers, electric, water and very quiet. It should be 17 euros a night. The mussels were delicious; if we’re still here in the morning and we see someone we’ll pay them.
It’s now the beginning of September and we’re back at the
bottom of the River Lea. The last couple of months have been rather hectic to
say the least.
To start with, we had a lovely holiday on other people’s boats touring around the country visiting all our boaty mates, and a couple of non boaty ones
On the Friday, with Legend safely moored just above
Sawbridgworth lock, we set off in the car up the M11 to Nuneaton for a night
with Kim Luke and George. We had a lovely afternoon in Atherstone where, on a whim,
we went to the local tip shop and found the perfect lock for our back doors,
(more about that later) followed by tea and cake in The Larder; a 1940s café
that is worth a diversion from the cut if you are up that way.
In the evening Kim demonstrated her under-stairs cocktail bar to great effect.
On Saturday morning, after a ‘crafting’ session with George
we set of to Wistow on the GU Leicester line to an excited welcome from
Lindsay, Paul and gorgeous Jack who were moore…
The visitor moorings next to Union Wharf at Market
Harborough was about as close as we could get Legend to a marina without
actually being in one. The perfect place to leave it while we went away for a
A couple of days before we left, we had a very surreal trip
to Kettering services on the A14 to collect Chloe. We pulled in and parked up.
After ten minutes two BMWs arrived and parked next to us. We ran over, grabbed
Chloe from the back of one of them, threw a blanket over her head and bundled
her into our car before speeding off. Ok, we didn’t do that, but we thought
What actually happened was that Paul & Janice and Jon &
Jo and their kids, along with Chloe, were on their way from Granny and Grandad’s
house in Stowmarket, to Jon & Jo’s house in Matlock and we’d arranged to
meet them and tranship Chloe. We all trooped into the forecourt shop, then
after a quick chat and a cuppa went our separate ways. It was a brief encounter
but good to see everyone, espec…
Happy New Year Dear Reader!
If we are to make one resolution for 2016 it should be to
write more blog posts. The last one was at end of November and here we are in
January. For this we can only apologise; our lives have been happy and full,
and we are very sorry for not sharing them with you.
We left you at a windy Norton Junction. While we were there,
we made some alterations to enable us to winterise the boat easily. We put
antifreeze in the central heating and, as we’ve got an air-cooled engine, the only
other thing that could have been a problem was the water pipes. As it was, the
lowest point in the pipework was under the bath where access to drain the
system was impossible. We solved that problem by running a pair of new pipes
from there, through the wall into the bedroom, under the bed to a new lowest
point in the engine room bilge. We made a lift up panel in the engine room
floor and fitted stop-taps to the pipes so we can get a jug underneath them.
All we have to do now is t…