Sunday, 4 October 2015

The Best Campsite in France

Yes it's true
 We came to Itsas Mendi to stay for 3 nights and it is now day 7 and we are still here.  We love it.  All of us.  The is a jumping castle
Jumping castle
and a beach and a sunset and it Mama says it smells tropical.  It just smells of warm sea to me.  And flowers.
The beach
 We picked walnuts and ate them
Another walnut?
 and went down the water slide hundreds of times
Time 378
 and went routing about in rock pools.
Catching crabs
 I climbed a tree like a goat trying to make argon oil.
Goaty goat goat
And they drank beer.
Eki Thump
 And they tried to drown me in the swimming pool.
Letting go of my shorts
 We paddled in the sea
 and made flowers in the sand.
And then they tried to drown me some more.

Oh and we saw a man on a paddle board and a cormorant next to him so Mama took a picture.

Man paddle and bird

Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Puy de dome, Bourboule, Mauriac, Figeac, Cahors, Bastide d'Armignac, Blahblahblah

La Lauze
 So the No Funs decided to hoik me up a mountain.  They drove me back the way we came on a road which made the brakes smell.  They did buy me cake though.  It was a lava biscuit and was very very tasty.  We parked at the bottom of the volcano and it is was bright and sunny and prepared for our accent the next morning.

Big hill
 And the next morning it rained.  The clouds were so bad we couldn't even see our noses.  But they hoiked me up there anyway.
Puy de dome in the rain.
 Everyone told us not to bother but we had to go anyway.
I hated it
There was one other person up there and he took this picture.  Volcanoes pff I say.  Mama tried to make them sound exciting and drew pictures of them spouting fire and molten lava and coloured them in with crayons but pff I say.  Volcanoes pff.
We passed through a few spa towns on route and mama was desperate for a thermal spa but they were all a bit snotty about camper vans.  Shame as France has been so accommodating with its aires.  Mont dore was particularly difficult.  Mama's French suddenly became fluent and noisy as she got fed up of people complaining about us stopping in a car park to buy some bread. 
Anyway we soon got to gorgeous Mauriac and found a tiny aire in a wood next to a lake where the sun came out and the people started to smile at me.  Do you know I have spent several weeks saying 'Bonjour, Bonjour, Bonjour' and people ignoring me!!!
Bonjour Mauriac
 We had a lovely time by the lake.  Lots of mushrooms and berries and walnuts andbig fish jumping and fat men jogging.
Le Lac.
 We got up early in the morning when there was a big mist everywhere like smoke on  the water........  I told Mama that the grass was full of glimpses.  She said it was called dew.  Mama and daddy said they were going for a jog around the lake and I asked if I could come.  They said yes if I could keep up.  I said I would go on my bicycle then.  We set off I decided I didn't want to cycle but I preferred to run so Daddy buried my bike under a bush.

 I worried all the time we were out jogging but Mama said it would be OK.  We got back in time to see a lorry about to drive off.  Daddy ran up and before he could say anything, the driver produced my bicycle from his cab.  I gave them a big Merci for looking after it for me.
Figeac ma belle
 When we arrived in Figeac, all clouds lifted and everyone looked pleased to see us.  I got a few Bonjour Bonjours and Mama started skipping.
Here too hot for hats
 I wished we had stayed longer in Figeac but unfortunately they were digging up the centre and it was difficult to park.
Cahors was amazing.  Most of France had been closed when we were driving through and that was because everyone was in Cahors. 
My most favourite place was Bastide d'Armagnac.  Tiny and beautiful and not quite so closed.  We went for a bike ride and came back after 10 minutes because the hills were too big.

Bon apetit
 Instead we had a fabulous lunch of foie gras and armagnac.  I loved it.  There seemed to be so much going on for a population of  692.  There was a harpsichord and a cello playing in the church, an opera in the evening and an art exhibition.
I liked the guy with a big chin
 It looked like something out of a film.  Mama thought about buying a house here.
Quick run
 Until she started being buzzed by the local NQR (not quite right) on a motorbike.........

Sunday, 20 September 2015

Big Cheese. Saint Nectaire

 So we are finally here in the Massive Central.  And very nice it is too.  Cold but nice.  Lots of trees and things.  Blackberries and wild raspberries and Mama made us a stew with sorrel for dinner.  We found an old house on a hill which daddy said was a dolmen from 5000BC.  Mama said show me that vine leaf stuffed with rice. 
Another church
 There was a big church on top of a hill which I said I didn't want to go into if I had to be quiet.  Mama said she would leave me outside then so I went in and practised whispering in a loud voice.
Same church.  Another picture
There are lots of trails through the woods and we have seen a dead skink and a dead snake and a live woodpecker and this morning a blue tit was in the van eating the crumbs from the floor. Mama said to invite him more often.  Also, a bird fell from the sky and lay on his back kicking his legs up in the air.  Mama went to pick it up and held it until it died in her hands.  I was very sad.  It had a small mark and blood on the back of its head.  We buried it and then all the way home I pretended to be a little dying bird until Mama got annoyed.
We also saw a hummingbird moth.

Hummingbird Moth
 It had a ginormous tongue.
Monkeying around
We also found this tree climbing palaver in the middle of a wood so we played for several hours on that.
The town
We are on a great campsite Camping Le Viginet but it closes next week so we are going off to explore some mountains.  In the rain.

Saturday, 19 September 2015

On the road again Year Two

Just as I settle into life with Nanny and start to say Hi instead of Hola, the No Funs hoik me off again to foreign parts.  Except they are not so foreign this time around.  And I love Nona.  I love her very much and am so happy to be in her.
They take me to Wimeraux because they say they came here before they had me.  I asked if I was dead then and they said maybe.  Anyway, Wimeraux had the biggest beach I have ever seen and when the tide went out it left loads of rock pools full of fish and crabs and squidgey sand and snails and wriggles.

Wait for me
I took my clothes off and went paddling even though it was quite chilly.  I found lots of mussels which we broke open and Mama promised to take me to a restaurant to eat some.
Looking for my muscles
Only when I got to the restaurant, I was so tired from all the fishing that I fell asleep on Mama's knee.  But that didn't stop them.  She put a napkin on my head and ate the lot.
Pulling mussels from a shell
The next day we went for a great big bike ride and then a great big walk.  Mama packed a picnic and it rained.  I climbed a mountain of sand and we saw seals playing in the bay.  In the rain.
Bloody big mole hill
Then we went off to Rouen to see the cathedral and go to the Art Museum there. Daddy found an amazing place to park up on the Rive Gauche overlooking the river and we could just walk into town.
Me and a lady
I liked the art gallery.  Mama took lots of pictures and daddy said I couldn't touch.  Mama said I could touch the sculptures if no one saw me.
Resting a Monet on my head

Something black and white that Mama liked
And then on to Chartres and another cathedral which looked like the last one but with amazing blue windows.
Blue windows
Daddy found another place to park overlooking the river but during the night it started to rain really heavily so Mama made me get up in the middle of the night to go and check the river in case we were washed away.
Finally something I wanted to do
And then on to Fishy which Mama said was called Vichy. We parked by the river there too.  We woke up to a fabulous morning with swings and slides and fishes jumping and kingfishers flitting.  Mama said she loved Vichy for the art deco architecture and the shabby chic whatever that is.  daddy said he couldn't help but think about the war.  We took our water bottles to the most beautiful building in an overgrown park and filled them with sparkling mineral water.

Sources les Celestes

Water water everywhere

Helping Daddy with his water
The water was delicious.  Warm and salty and fizzy and made me burp.  I drank so much that I weeed all the way back to the camper van.

Sunday, 30 August 2015


Wild Flowers
Running the BMX track
Visiting Skittle
So off we went.  Happy to be back in the van.  We had missed Nona.  We stopped off to look at some wild flowers, have a cup of tea,run up and down a bmx track and have a wee.  All the good things in life.  The great thing about the van is that we can pull up anywhere and we have a cafe on wheels.  Then we carried on and went to visit Uncle Skittle in Stoke Manderville. 
After that, we went in search of goats.
Looking for goats
I looked everywhere for them.
Finding pigs

That ponio nibbled my fingero

Here they are
Don't spit
We found the Bucks Goat Centre.  They had lots of animals there and I had a nice time.  But the best thing of all was a small pink plastic car that I could ride in.
Can I ride you Sheepio
And everytime anyone went near it, a small person called Oliver chased them away or burst into tears.  So all the small people wanted to ride in it.  Mama kept trying to distract me but I wasn't having any of it.
Our Camping spot
Daddy had found a great camping spot at a pub called the Black Horse in Great Missenden.  There were lots of rabbits.   Then, we went to visit my Uncle Marcus.  Mama had a shower there thank goodness.  Uncle Marcus drove us around in a car with no roof and then made me the best pizza.  He kept sying that the only rule in his house was that there are no rules.
Showing him how to do it
Mama got a text from the Mama of a friend of mine so we went to visit them. And I had a lovely time.
My friend Luca
And then we headed oooop North and it started to rain.  Bucket loads.

We parked up in Whalley in the centre of the town and hung around Whalley Abbey for some shelter.
We even hung around a pub for Daddy to have some ale and for me to have some red drink.

Whalley Abbey
The next day I went to see my Grandma Brenda and I was very happy to see her. And happy to see Ganggang Geffers too.
Grandma Brenda
We went for the first of many ice creams with him to Slaters ice cream shop.  The cream of the North!
Two visits Slater
We also visited Daddy's Aunty Jean and I played with cousin Peter.
This isCousin Peter
And we did a bit of walking and got the switch mended on the fridge and went to see my aunties who made a big fuss of me.
Aunty Jayne and Aunty Ping
They took me to a playground and a pub with a playground and then lit a big fire in the evening.  Mama and I slept all night through. 
A view

Dingly Dell
And we went to Mama's old house and looked at the land Grandpappy used to garden.  Mama saw all the trees he had planted as nobody has changed anything after all this time.  She even found his logan berries which had grown wild, so she put the rest of his ashes there.
Grandpappy's loganberries
After that, we picked up Ganggang Geoffers and drove up to Hawes.  He camped next to us.  It was very exciting.
How many men does it take to put a tent up? (2 and a half)
We did lots of walking and the sun came out for some of it.
Walking with Granddad Geoffers
It was very beautiful.  Quiet and beautiful.
On another hike
We visited the Wensleydale cheese factory which I liked.  We ate lots of cheese which I like too.
ohhhhh Gromit
And did some more walking.
It's grim ooop North
The campsite was Blackburn Farm and was beautiful.  There was only us and another van there.  It was so dark and quiet at night. (Apart from the rain banging on the roof).
There was a fabulous ponio in the next field which would come and say hello every morning.
A view from a Bridge
And lots of streams and waterfalls. 
Glorious cousins
We left there and went to drop off Ganggang and met up with my Uncle and my cousins who were very brave and had walked miles and miles and miles with tents on their backs.  We had a party in the van.
Looking for Christopher
We then went to meet my Ganggang Philip's son Christopher and had a nice walk with him and some lunch and then started heading back to Nana's.
Blackberry pie
We picked blackberries on the way and stopped in Tring to see and wonderful museum there.
Tring museum
None of the animals moved.  We called in to see my Uncle Roachy and his wife made the most wonderful roast dinner with amazing stuffing.
Uncle Roachy
Back in Dorset
All that in two weeks.
Daddy says Mama packs too much in.
And now I'm back with my Nanny. 
One more week and we're off again.