Jumieges

On the drive from Honfleur to Jumieges, near Rouen, the GPS was in cahoots with the toll companies. First crossing a toll bridge over the Seine to then cross back over another toll bridge over the Seine some miles later.
Later we were surprised when we arrived at another river Seine crossing. This time a small free ferry.

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Wendy was somewhat light hearted about the unscheduled detour.

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We arrived at Camping de la Foret and plan to stay here for a couple of days.

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It has been another very hot day so Max took cover under the van as usual, whilst Pepsi prefers being in the cab, with the windows and door open.

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There’s a derelict abbey here from 1042. Very impressive.
Apparently William the Conqueror visited here after the battle of Hastings; and Edward the Confessor was educated here.

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Claude Monet, Giverny

Set off from Honfleur and travelled to Giverny to visit Claude Monet’s house.

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We then decided to travel onto Le Mont St Michel one day earlier than planned. With a reasonably long drive we decided to have a McDonalds for dinner except we could not find one over 250kms!
Arriving in the evening we had a choice between parking the van in the car park overnight (€20.60/night) or in the camp site (€15.60/night). We opted for the camp site.

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Ready to go!!

So the van is washed, polished and pretty much packed, ready to tour Normandy, France.
It has shiny new front brake discs and pads for this trip. Also fitted a new leisure battery as the original sealed battery would not hold its charge. Fitted a non-sealed battery this time so it can be topped up if necessary, so expect this to last longer than two years.
Unfortunately, we never found the time to install an inverter as planned, but that will definitely happen when we get back.

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May Weekend in Ravenglass

We have spent another great weekend in Ravenglass. We arrived on Friday, a bit later than normal due to the fact that I wanted to make sure all of my pupils made it back from their residential trip in one piece.
The weather forecast for the weekend was not great but we were hoping for some dry spells so that the dogs could get a nice run out on the beach. It was therefore a welcome bonus that the sun was shining when we arrived. Having set up we walked down to the Ratty Arms to try and book for dinner, unfortunately they were already fully booked so we had to resort to cooking for ourselves. We did however manage to book for the Saturday evening.
The weather for the rest of the weekend was great and we spent our time walking the dogs on the beach, sitting out on the campsite enjoying the sunshine and eating good food at the Ratty Arms and the Inn at Ravenglass.
It was a really relaxing break and a good prep for our trip to France in a few weeks time as it threw up a couple of issues with the van that we need to address. The bathroom light that was working before we left home on Friday had stopped by the time we arrived, so that needs investigating. A wee bit of a rumble when we were breaking means that we will change the front brake discs and pads before we set off on such a long trip. Apart from this the van was still fabulous and I suppose in the two and a half years we have had it we haven’t needed to do anything so we can’t complain. We might even fit in a trip to North Ledaig in the coming weeks.
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The Season is Upon Us

Today the van is getting a much needed wash. It has been in the drive for much of the winter and a layer of grime has gradually built up dulling down its nice shiny paintwork.
Two weeks time will see us making a return trip to Ravenglass Camping and Caravanning Club site in the Lake District. We visited for the first time last season and enjoyed it so much we are going back this year. It won’t be long after that until we head off to France again. Hopefully we’ll also be able to fit in a couple of trips up to North Ledaig in between. We are nothing but creatures of habit!!
We are still hoping to add an inverter and some solar panels to charge a second battery but we have decided to hang fire with the external refillable gas tank for the moment as we haven’ t ever used two whole cylinders in the time we have been away. It might be something we don come back to in the future.
In the meantime I think the only other thing we will be adding for this season is a midge curtain for the gap at the sliding door. Some velcro, curtain hem weights and some netting from here should do the trick.

Getting Ready for the Season Ahead

It feels that the new season is just around the corner. The van is booked in tomorrow for its MOT. Our summer holiday to France is booked and we have already begun to make plans for the places we would like to visit and the Aires we might stay at. To help with getting into the mood we are visiting the Caravan and Outdoor Leisure show next weekend at the SECC. We entered a prize draw and managed to secure two free tickets.
We will be looking at gas tanks for converting to using auto gas. This will mean that when we are in Europe we can fill up at the filling stations and don’t need to worry about running out of Calor Gas. Also we are thinking about installing some solar panels and an inverter so that we can be self sufficient when we don’t have access to electric hookup.

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