Back in business

I met up with Laurie Chancellor the other day and he – like thousands of others, no doubt – was distraught that I had deserted my last post a while back and had left you all wondering how we were getting on in France. To be honest, I ran out of inspiration. Just before giving you a resume, I’ll mention a nice crossword clue I came across the other day. It’s really just for Laurie!

£51 cash (6)

The rest of the Normandy trip went very well. We went for strolls.  We visited Dinan, an attractive wee town, and Villedieu les Poeles. The latter is a famous bell foundry. Big bells: think Notre Dame or any major cathedral and you won’t be far off. Manufacturing these huge bronze pieces still involves clay, goat hair and horse dung. The tour of the foundry was very good: we got the “English” tour with a rather in-your-face, isn’t-my-English-brilliant, enthusiastic young man who constantly swept his hair back with his hand. He was good though.IMG_0006

Our return to the UK was smooth and uneventful, though there were dozens – if not hundreds – of English cyclists on board, all togged out in Lycra. Some were certainly fit and wiry men of a certain age but there were also lots of (presumably) slower groups with cycle buggies, tandems etc. in evidence. I wondered if they’d been doing part of the Tour de France route, but whatever it was it must have been an organised thing.

One reason for our return to Old Blighty was to attend Jo’s graduation from Portsmouth with a Master’s in Forensic Psychology and we had a great couple of days there.

Anyway, we got back in the appropriate number of pieces: even the Southampton – Inverness drive was sufficiently easy we did it in a oner.

Later this week I’m heading off to near Chamonix to start the Tour de Mont Blanc (TMB from now on). At the moment the weather looks good and I’m really looking forward to heading off with Brian Macgill for the 14 days or so that our “TMB (Comfort)” will take. Our luggage gets transported for us, we stay in small hotels and inns and walk from place to place. I hope to maintain a blog while I’m away, but it depends on internet and inspiration: and inns, too, I suspect.

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