Monday 11th May 2015 After our tiring day yesterday we did not complete last week's blog last night and so we needed to spend the morning doing it. Once completed we walked up the 200 steps (again!) to upload the blog at the Tourist Information Office. It was a very hot day and we treated ourselves to Pistachio Icecream which we enjoyed whilst sitting in the park near our motorhome. Allan got "talking" to a local fisherman who seems to be here every day but sadly he had caught nothing. The evening was filled with good "conversation" with our fellow motorhomers.

Tuesday Today we decided to take the Historique Circuit which took us through the remaining medieval streets of the city. First, we had to climb the steps - yes, 200 again!

Here are views of the medieval quarter and the door in the 2nd & 3rd photos is 16th century.......

The entrance to the Chateau is in this quarter. This is the view from there.........

During this circuit Allan discovered there was a geocache to be found. We found it behind the Virgin's House!

We returned to the town square and whilst looking at the guide book we realised that we had already done the "Guerre de 1870" walk and the "River Loir" walk was part of the same route that we took when we did our geohike on Sunday. So, very pleased with ourselves we returned home with some beer, salami and bread.

This is the top of the 200 steps.... Let us tell you, it is easier going down!

We spent another lovely late afternoon in the beautiful park and Allan again joked with his fisherman friend, gesturing had he caught anything. Apparently he had caught two fish so Allan stretched his arms wide gesturing how big but the fisherman laughed and showed us they were only at most 2 inches long!!!

Dorothy returned to the motorhome to find a couple of people looking at the back of it. They were from NZ and asked quite seriously why we had a ladder on the back of the motorhome. Do you have a garden on the roof? I told them no, we don't even have grass with a goat up there! Then another couple who were travelling with them joined us and the first guy told them that I have a ladder to get up to my garden on the roof. The woman looked questioningly at me and so I said yes, I also have a small greenhouse and grow tomatoes up there!

In the evening we phoned home again to speak to Mum and then had a visit from Babou's owner Dominique. He saw I have a magnetic bracelet and told us he uses "healing hands" on his dog, where you hold your hands over an area of pain or an ailment and healing energy flows. On leaving he stood behind Dorothy and held his hands close to her shoulder blades for at most 2 minutes. You can believe it or not but after that she has had no pain.

Wednesday Having been in France for a month now it is now time to check on our finances. Council Tax £0, TV Licence £0, Electricity £0, Water £0, Sewage £0, Gas £5, 2 Telephones & Internet £33. Can we afford to stay?? On the strength of this, Allan went and ordered a booster for his wifi reception. It will be delivered Poste Restante in the next few days. So, we now have a plan!! We need to be in Montoire sur le Loir within the next two weeks to pick up our package from the post office there! (this is a one-off special delivery address)

We spent the remainder of the day in the park and also took a walk along both sides of the river Loir.................

It was so peaceful here and we heard the most beautiful music floating across the water...........

We followed the sound to discover two young men sitting by the side of the river, one playing a guitar and the other a small "Hang drum". He was using wooden hammers to ring out the most soft, haunting and beautiful melody.

THEN THE MOST AWFUL COMMOTION ERUPTED!!!!! We all turned round to see, yes, you've guessed it - Allan's fisherman, only it wasn't a fish he had caught but a DUCK!!! We were all in hysterics and we don't know who was most shocked - the fisherman or the duck, quack quack! We couldn't contain ourselves and had to leave him to it!

When we saw the fisherman again later that evening, Allan's gesture was not arms stretched "how long was the fish" but "arms flapping" quack quack and lots of laughs!!

In the evening we met a couple from a motorhome group that we all belong to and they parked up beside us. As both of our vans are Autotrail and look the same at the rear the other motorhomers were totally confused! In fact Dominique went to their van before realising we were the next van along!

Thursday was yet another Public Holiday here in France. We have had three so far and we've only been here a month! We thought we were in for some Bank Holiday weather but the sun is shining now.

It was Market Day in the town square and so, yes, it was up the 200 steps again! The market was interesting, especially the man on the massive fish stall who sang most of the time. Dorothy unwittingly jumped the queue on one of the fruit & veg stalls (oops!).

We returned to the Aire for some lunch and were about to eat the strawberries that we treated ourselves to when there was a knock at the door. Our Autotrail neighbours were about to get water and offered us the use of their tap connector as ours didn't fit. Thanks we said and set about making the vehicle safe to move to the water point. Allan went to check how they were getting on and just then the heavens opened to a massive downpour. To make matters worse their tap connector also wasn't the correct one and the water was spraying out everywhere. Then they couldn't stop the water coming out of the water point and so we were all running around in the pouring rain and being sprayed with the hosepipe whilst trying to fill up every available water container! This week seems to be turning into some sort of comedy show! But we did get free water!!

As we write this it is still raining off and on with the sun shining in between.

Friday The morning was taken up with some housekeeping and for several reasons we decided to move onto Vendome. We had a good time in Chateaudun and the Aire was in a superb place (except for the 200 steps!). We said goodbye to Babou and took off on our journey, stopping for "essential" supplies! at a supermarket in Cloyes sur le Loir on the way, after having been directed to a supermarket that has closed down! Perhaps they can see us coming!!!

We arrived in Vendome early afternoon and although this is not us in the photo it is the route into town that we took....

The Aire was not up to much, with no water etc. (as it was outside a campsite and they obviously wanted
motorhomes to use their site which also did not appear to be up to much and expensive) but it was convenient
and near to the town centre.

We had a walk around the town and did a geocache on the way in. We tried for a
second but couldn't make any sense of the clue so decided to have another go tomorrow!

Saturday Up and out early today as much to do! We did a four geocache puzzle which we did complete and which took us to four parts of the town - the last two involving yet more steps!!
Here are some photos of our walk.....

We then went to the Tourist Information Office to see if they could help us translate the hint for the cache we couldn't find yesterday. They had no idea what it meant but we decided to take another look as we had come across different GPS co-ordinates in a previous found log and with Allan's "cacher's eye" it was quickly found with a jubilant cry of "gotcha"!! We returned to the motorhome for a meal and well earned rest, only to remember it was take-away night back home and we were missing it! A Skype call to family in Brighton was made and it cheered us up no end. Thanks Jon, Sharon, Sheila, Colin & Gary.

Sunday On checking our phone we found that the order that Allan had placed on Wednesday at 4 in the afternoon had been posted to us from Yorkshire that very same day. Believe it or not it had gone through customs and had been delivered to a small post office in France yesterday (Saturday) morning! We had not expected it to arrive until later next week so decided we should travel in the direction of Montoire sur le Loir to pick up the package tomorrow. So, our brief time as tourists is over. We had some heavy laundry to do first and so had our very first experience of a French Launderette. Ours is number 15!!

Washing done we we were off on our way to Les Roches l'Evêque. On the way we spotted the very first Vineyard of this trip. A day of "firsts".

This is the view that we saw on arriving at the Aire, taken from beside the motorhome. Idyllic. We are now back to the good life.

This is the river Loir and Chateaudun, Vendome, here at Les Roches l'Evêque and Montoire sur le Loir where we are heading tomorrow are all on this same river.
On all the lakes and still parts of the rivers that we have seen, water lilies are everywhere. Sadly we are too early to see them in flower.

And so another week has passed by. Where is the time going?

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