On Wednesday we drove to Nantes and back, and yesterday we drove to Nemours just south of Paris and back. We did it all on non toll paying roads, which probably added an hours or two on to the trip, but saved us a lot of money. Our route is here. One of the things it did reconfirm with us is how lucky we are to live where we do: to the west of us is prarie country - wide open grain fields, flat horizons and dust, and there are elements of the same to the northeast.
We haven't bought anything though - except for a small box of Charantais melons. Driving through the countryside around Richelieu and Chatellerault with the windows open gives interesting olofactory experience - alternating ripe melon and cowshed muck. It seemed a bit of a waste to drive through the Charente in melon season and not buy any, so in the end we followed a series of roadside "melon a vendre" signs and made a purchase of 5 juicy, ready to eat one day after the other melons. I think we got the "today" and "tomorrow" melons confused, but that's life...
Nemours in the sunAnnoyingly the car dealership at Nemours was closed. Even though we have an email giving their opening times, we think they may have put a typo in the date and gone on holidays yesterday, not the 16th of August. The day wasn't wasted though - we popped in on Ken and Walt, which is always a pleasure. Then on the way home we had a magnificent display of lightning of all kinds which lit up the sky in a big arc in the south and west - very impressive, and when we arrived home we even had 10 minutes of really heavy rain. Not our preferred option, but better than nowt.