Thursday, 12 April 2007

France!!! Our first ‘Camperstop’ and ‘France Passion’ stop.

After arriving with no problems from the dogs or at controls, we headed for our first stop. This was at what are known in France as ‘Aires de Campingcars’ these are areas specially provided for motor-homes/campervans only – no caravans! They often have drinking water so you can fill up; dumps for grey water and chemical toilets and most have places to stop over for a night or two. Some even have electric for free or a couple of Euros!! How’s that for being camping friendly!!

This is the one at Berck-sur-Plage by the light house near the dunes. Fantastic!!

Then heading towards Saint Malo, where Peter had been with his Mum on their tour of the Channel Islands and the North of France and Paris before she died, we stopped off at a cider farm – part of the ‘France Passion’scheme. This is a scheme only for campervans again, that allows you, once you join by buying the book at about 6 or 7 Euros, to stay for free at one of the participating farms, vineyards or similar. The only thing you have to do is go and say hello and introduce yourself and say goodbye when you leave. Tasting and buying their produce is offered also!!!

Here are pictures of the house and barns of Pascal Beaumesnil’s cider farm, which is just outside a little village called St Aubin de Scellon. We loved the old buildings that Pascal and his wife and parents were renovating. We also loved his cider and apple juice!!

We took the dogs for a walk along the country lanes, it’s very flat here and you can see for miles; unfortunately so can the dogs…They spotted a deer and ran after it. They were away for ages, had probably ran for miles, and we were getting worried about them, thinking all sorts of things that could have happened to them or by them. We kept whistling and Hamish eventually appeared but no Willow. She doesn’t have Hamish’s stamina for long runs. We eventually saw her coming back, but we could see that she was absolutely knackered and resolutely following the trail they had made back. We were whistling and calling but she was obviously focussed just on following the scent back. Peter ran down the road to head her off and she eventually saw him and stopped!

We chatted a while as best we could with Pascal and he showed us inside the old barn which was still in its original state. He has recently bought the place and is doing it up. They just finished roofing and insulating the new barn where they were already bottling the cider made last year.

After buying some of his cider and apple juice we left and headed for St Malo.

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