Bois Soleil, St George de Didonne;
2nd - 12th May

HL 6th May, continued

On Friday we moved south to St Georges de Didonnes, near Royan. We were here last year and are staying in the same campsite, Bois Soleil, because we were so comfortable then; as are we now. Staying a full week this time and the weather is glorious; 24º yesterday.

We've not abandoned supermarches! Two visits since arrival here; L'Eclerc and Super U.

Had a fabulous meal last night in the wee restaurant just outside the campsite; started with a very tasty garlic bread (on bruchette) - the best we both have ever tasted. MSL had a prawn flambé (translated in english by the waiter as ‘phoosh'!) while I had the inevitable meules marinier; followed by two exquisite desserts - coupes poivre for MSL, instant pomme pour moi. Sounds a bit ordinary but it was great - cooked apples, cream under a biscuit crumb served with caramel; nom, nom!

And now it's Tuesday. We may venture out to Royan; or we may not. That's the wonder of glamping!

MSL 8th May

Is it really 4 weeks since we left, time takes on a completely different concept in this nomad life? Even Maya has taken to having long lies, and it has been as late as 8:45 before the first woof of the day is heard. The girls were both showered this afternoon so hopefully all the smells of the sea and bits of shrubbery have been got rid of for the rest of today at least (^_^). We have been so lucky in that the cove we take them to has been virtually deserted so Maya has been free to chase her Frisbee and get rid of all her energy. All of a sudden Magan has taken an interest in throw and fetch, well in throw anyway. She has been having fun with small pieces of driftwood, which we have found on the beach, we throw, she runs and picks it up and waits for us to throw again. We were in the supermarket yesterday and noticed a small, not too heavy, dog toy which we, in our infinite wisdom (not), thought would be great to encourage her in this exercise, not so it seems, she prefers the wood (^_^).

Campsite Bois Soleil, St Georges de Didonnes

Privacy Room up for the first time!

We have seen quite a wee bit of the area, some by design, some not. This is one of the most attractive areas in France and enjoys a large amount of sunshine. Yesterday we bought two small Lafuma chairs which means we can now eat in the Privacy Room or outside if there are no flying things around, you know how HL feels about them.

We have a wee dilemma. We had planned to include the North of Spain in this trip, had chosen a campsite and have closely been watching the weather, which is great. However, we have spoken to a number of people who say, quite clearly, don't go. Apparently, it is dirty, unfriendly, the police are on a campaign to fill the coffers and dogs are not welcome. Maybe we could put up with the dirty and unfriendly if we had to, but not having the girls restricted. We spoke to a lady this morning who had been heading for Playa D'Aro, which they had enjoyed in years past and had been our destination choice. They didn't get as far, turning back long before they reached there. So, it's 1,000 miles to Croatia from here, then 900 miles back to Calais. What to do? 'Cos HL wasn't feeling too good yesterday (we later found out that he had forgotten to take his morning meds) and because we were digesting all the Spanish update info, we decided to extend our stay here, so instead of leaving tomorrow we are here at least until Monday. Can't fault the place, the site is very comfortable, the neighbours are nice and the sun is shining (at least for some of the day).

Not sure where we will head next, possibly we will continue South, but we would then be repeating a lot of last year's adventure, when something new would be preferable. There is another lovely site at Biscarosse, about 2 hours away, which would make a visit to Lourdes easier, we missed out on this last year. Tomorrow we plan a trip to Cognac, about 70 kms from here, also missed from last year.

HL 10th May

Now it's a MONTH since we set off!

Our trip to Cognac was a great experience and most enjoyable. We were spoilt for choice as to which brand we'd visit - Courvoisier, Henessey, Martell and plenty more; but, of course, Remy Martin won through - as you'd expect. We arrived early enough to be able to book a tour at 2pm and then go beforehand for lunch in Cognac. The Ville de Cognac is typical of all French places, utterly charming with its narrow streets and roadside cafes and brasseries.

Remy Martin

The Remy Martin Visitor Site in Cognac

We have a few photos of the trip but taking any in the cellars of Remy was not allowed. But the tour itself, in English, to a group of 4 including us, the others were a Canadian couple from Calgary, was presented by an Italian girl who spoke better English than French (she said), was very interesting, informative and fun. We know much more about Cognac now than just the taste. Remy Martin Louis XIII costs €3400 per bottle and 99% of its production is exported, mostly to China. Not much chance of any of that coming our way; but we were given a tasting of Fine Champagne Remy VSOP and Remy Martin XO.

The history of Cognac, Remy Martin and the wine from which it is derived - Eau de Vie, coming exclusively from grapes grown in the Grand Cognac and Petit Cognac regions, the making of the oak barrels and visits to the cellars made this a great experience. Well worth it. Of course, we did not leave empty handed. Our Bixie cellar is stocked, for now!

Today, Saturday, mizzly and drizzly, was a quiet day; nevertheless we did manage to get M&M to the beach for their highlight of the day.

© Homer Lindsay 2013, 2014, 2015