Sunday, 27 September 2015


Shall I shan't I ? The weather forecast is possible thunderstorms. What the heck who wants to sit I a motorhome all day. Off for the bus then. Its only 6 km into the city but it took 30 mins. Got off the bus sreetmap in hand and began walking towards the old part of the city. The sky grew dark then I felt spots of rain. As if prearranged I walked past a restaurant a couple where just getting up from the only table that didn't have a reserved sign on so Sat down and ordered a beer. The heavens opened complete with thunder and lightning. The rain was heavy and lasted over an hour bu,t Hey was I bothered. I ordered food and watched a man just outside buy an umbrella for 10 Euros that had only been 5 till the rain stared. Here's a couple of photos of the restaurant. Can't decide if the guy at the bar looks more like Ronnie Corrbet or Adolf Hitler:-

This was the place before they all arrived

This was after.

The rain did eventually stop so I took some photos of more stunning architecture:-


Saturday, 26 September 2015


I rested for a day till my legs started working again then set off for A place someone had recommended called Peniscola, a lovely long beach and promenade they said.
 (Not to be confused with Pensacola in the USA) where the do indeed have both those things. Different as chalk and Camembert. Having said that I never actually got to the promenade or beach because the campsite was twice as far away as it said in the book and I wasn't up for another Barcelona. The motorhomes on site were packed in like sardines.The supposedly free WiFi pronounced Wee Fee around here didn't work but how can you complain about something that doesn't work if it's free ? Went off for a shower but it had no shower  head, just a 15mm pipe sticking out of the wall and as the door lock was long gone I had to assume a Mick Jagger pose and push my bum against the door. I should have started singing " I cant get no Satisfaction " or come to that any hot water either. The sites only saving grace was I had only booked in for one night and they only charged me 10 Euros instead of  the 16 it said in the ACSI guide. I was away for 9.30 in the morning & drove the two hours down to the city of Valencia on lovely wide, quiet roads.
 I have come to realize I don't enjoy driving through European city's Iv'e never been to, or towns, or for that matter Villages thanks to Sue. Valencia like all the others Iv'e had to negotiate is not for the faint hearted and the older I get the fainter mine is becoming.
 Well I've arrived here at lovely, roomy, friendly site  and discovered  there's bus from outside the site into the city so tomorrow I'll do the tour. I do hope they have an underground system.
Iv'e noticed a big difference between Spain and France. In France as you drive along there's loads of Supermarkets whereas in Spain they seem very few and far between on main roads. the upshot of this being that I didn't pass one on my drive. The camp shop sells only ready meals so I bought a paella in a bag. next time your in Asda or wherever, buy one of those £1.50 ready meals, take it home heat it up and taste it you'll know what I mean. Then throw it in the bin. At least the wine I bought to go with it saved the night.


Well another day another Euro. I just arrived at a site in Mataro 50 mins North of Barcelona & booked in for 3 nights with a view of going into the city tomorrow.
This morning  the sun is shining & I am refreshed from strong drink & a good nights sleep.The site is Quite expensive but has free WiFi and a free bus into the city & back so I'll there.
 It's difficult to put Barcelona into words specially Gaudis Sagrada Familia, it's like a diamond, a different facet at every turn, so I'll do it in Pictures :-

Random Imposing Building 

The next three are an early Gaudi project


Could have been used in Harry Potter

A random piece of street scupture 

This is an hotel which I approached from the left hand side. It just looked like a thin flat surface !

Science Museum.Yet another stunning  building

Add caption

How does this Building not fall down ?

There's some cool street graffiti in Europe 

Foam Party For the kids

I Didn't expect Barcelona to be as big as it turned out to be. On the street map it didn't look so big Being a Yorkshire man there was no way I was going to cough up 27 Euros for an open topped bus tour or 15 Euros and a two hour Que to see the inside of the cathedral So I walked & walked & walked & walked for hours but as I clambered on board the bus back to campsite I really do wish I'd forked out the 9 Euros for the underground network the people sat next to me told me about. All over the City they said. Bastards.

Monday, 21 September 2015


It's with no regret at all the Sue the satnav and I are going our separate ways. I set Sue  for my destination as usual and set off on a 4 hour drive over the Pyrenees to a campsite just below Barcelona. All went well for the first three miles until she told me to turn left of a perfectly good road onto a minor road. which I did. we then began a 6 mile climb of continuous tight S bends up a very steep road which I realized was taking me over the Pyrenees on a minor road. Why ??? the journey down the other side was as bad with steep downhill bends & cars not expecting to meet a motorhome coming the other way. Those of you who know me will know I'm as laid back as gravity allows but my stress levels were staring to rise. Eventually the world became level again and the road wide enough that I didn't have to grip the steering wheel quite so tightly hoping I wouldn't finish up in the ditch every time a car drove towards me At last we arrived at a main road "  Thank you God " . the next few miles where bliss, then we arrived in a Village. French Villages are never straight forward.they tend to have narrow main streets with cars parked on a least one side an usually a delivery van on the other, causing traffic to wait in both directions. on the road in I picked up two other motorhomes and the three of us were in convoy when we arrived at said village. We slowly made it through and Sue said turn right in 200 yards. The motorhome in front of me went straight on as I noticed did the one behind me, Sue had played her Ace. On turning right the road as so narrow I had to fold my wing mirrors in which meant I couldn't see down Lefties sides miraculously I manged to drive two hundred yards between houses without damage. Surely things cant get worse, but guess what. They did. A van came from the other direction and there just wasn't room. to make things even worse, two cars who could clearly see the problem drove down behind the van. I don't speak French but on this occasion it wasn't necessary, their faces said all. Why would any sane person try to bring a 6 metre long  by 2.3 metre wide motorhome up this bloody road ???? I lamely held up Sue for them to see. It took what seemed like a lifetime to maneuver van, cars, and Leftie. It  was like those puzzles you had as a child. A square with sliding tiles and one space you could  move around one tile at a time to make a picture. By the time I was back on  main roads I was starting feel a tiny bit better. Only half an hour to go, and that's when Sue went for the jugular. Being a Yorkshire man and careful with money Sue is programmed to avoid Toll roads. something she excelled at in the 18 months we've been together.When you consider a round trip to the south of Spain and back using Toll roads in a motorhome would probably cost £200. But oh no, not this time straight to the Toll booth.............
I am now at the campsite laying down with a cold compress. I don't even have any WHISKY

Saturday, 19 September 2015

ITS A FAIR COP ( but his was dark brown )

I  woke this morning refreshed & with the sun shining on Leftie a me. After me Special K and a peach I set sail for my present resting place alongside a river on a quiet Aire. The journey was quite eventful. Sue & I had our first fall out of the trip. I gave her to cordinates pressed go & she proceeded to send be down all the back roads she knew. As the journey went on she found better roads so Before too long we were engaged in our usua banter. Her " Turn round when possible " me " Well your the one that told me to turn right here you ARSE " as I looked for a place to turn a police bike, with blues & two's flew past going the other way. Thinking that's trouble for somebody I duly turned around I drove back to the confusing junction to see two police man speaking to the driver of a car at the side of the road. Being the friendly person I am I nodded and smiled as I passed doing my bit for good          English /French accord. 
            Now you may associate sunflowers with joy and sunshine but I can tell you it doesn't end that way, they eventally turn in to very sad old flowers, bent over heads drooped & not following the sun as they did in their youth no yellow flowers surrounding little black faces. Look away now if you want to remember the sun flower growing competitions of your school days :-

Fields & fields of them, so remember their sacrifice next time you buy A bottle of sunflower oil.
 One the best sights of the day, as I drove over the brow of a hill I'd been slowly climbing for about half an hour was my first glance of the Pyrenees away in the distance. Reminded me the Hobbit looking out over the shire. This however was shortly followed by the worst site of the day. Glancing in my drivers mirror I saw my two police motorbikes friends directly behind me with blue lights. I slowed slightly & moved as far as I could to the right to let them  pass. Unfortunately they didn't want to pass they wanted me to stop. One rode along side and indicated he wanted me to pull in. In panic mode I pulled in wondering, what offence I had committed. You hear about people being pulled over and given on the spot fine in cash for whatever . As I came to a stop the police man drew level and pointed down at the left side of Leftie. I look out and saw that one of the outside lockers had slipped it's catch and was gently waving about as I'd been driving along. The police man indicated I should lock it touched his helmet and drove of down the road with his partner. As pulled into the layby to lock the offending catch I decided I needed toilet stop. I'm now parked at the Aire I mentioned at the beginning of this post tonight I'm making Boufe Bourgignon.( Well That's how they spell it in this bit of France ) Cause I can. Sitting here now listening to smooth classics with a cheeky glass of red and a wonderful smell from the stove top. Until tomorrow.🚐🍷


Having spent 11 nights camping in leffo & on free Aires I'm shelling out £10 for a night of luxury. Showers, toilets, electric hook up & a washing machine. A pool too if you dare. I arrived in Crayssac near Cahors. The site was OK but obviously gearing down for the winter. I booked in, bought a bottle of local Cahors red & planed my next stop off. I bought a washing machine token & did the washing for the princely some of 5€ bargain. Hung it out to dry, retired to Leftie & shared the bottle of wine myself, such generosity. Toulouse sausage casserole for tea, unless your name is Frances when it's called supper even at 5 pm. Went for a wonder round the campsite, watched a film saw no other English vans so had an early night. It was a very Restless night, probably the longest Leftie and I have spent in a long time. Woke up the first time about 1am  & remembered I'd left the washing out. No panic who the hell would steal my wardrobe. So last season my dear. I must have dosed off again because the next time I woke at 2am I could hear the rain beating down as it does on lefties roof, it's a lovely feeling being tucked up in bed all warm and snug listening to rain on the roof, that is until you remember the washing hanging on the line a hundred yards away ( MERDE ) as they say in France. Not point bringing it in now. It can't get any wetter and where would I put it. The rain persisted all night so when the reception opened at 9am I was waiting at the door for 2 tokens at 5€ each, no longer a bargain, a very expensive wash. As the weather forecast was for rain and possible thunderstorms I decided to drive 3hours or so south which promised sun.

Later that day saw me on an ex campsite on the edge of Puylaurens. The weather was better so I had tea.  Galettes ( savoury Breton pancakes ) heated in a pan with ham. Cheese, and topped with egg. I then ate a runaway sausage, it was one left over from the casserole that had lept from the top shelf of the fridge and tried to to hide in the tray at the bottom, the sausage that is not the casserole. I could have just thrown it away but hey I had nothing to loose ( Toulouse )  Ha Ha Ha, see what I did there !! Stand by for tomorrow's nail biting instalment.


I have today driven to the village of Oradour Sur Glane. Not far from Limouge. It's not a pretty village in fact there's not a building left in tact. On June the 10th 1944 the village was surrounded by Nazi SS soldiers. The population were corralled into the town square. The women & children were taken into the church & the men split into two groups. The SS told them they searching for weapons ( which they already new didn't exist. The men were then taken to two locations & shot.The women & children in the church which was set alight killing 642 men women & children. :-

The village was sealed off for 3 days to allow the SS. Soldiers to bury the remains in a mass grave and to burn every building as it stands today. The only roof to survive was that of the church, the timber went but the stone valt remained.

Another example of mans inhumanity to man.There is a new town built up around the village and life goes on.