It was quite chilly in the night and very quiet, although we heard owls as we drifted off to sleep and Cathy says she heard the hunt in the local fields early in the morning. We woke to cool, clear skies with a lovely autumnal mist. As we packed up the sun shone through the misty trees - it looked lovely. There was a free fresh water tap, so we topped up our tank and spare bottles and drove off.
We'd decided to return to the coast for our last few days. The Loire countryside is lovely and we passed lots of vineyards and local wine producers. We pulled off the main road on the way into a small village where I bought a baguette and a slice of egg custard for Cathy. We found a large parking spot between a farm and a forest of sweet chestnut trees and joined the French workmen who had pulled over for the compulsory long lunch 'hour'. Fed and watered, we carried on and arrived at the Aire in St Jean Le Thomas at about 1430. We visited here a few days back to fill up with water and liked the spot. We had the Aire all to ourselves, which sat above the municipal campsite, which itself is right on the beach. The village overlooks the huge expanse of shallow water surrounded by sand dunes and salt marshes, with Mont St Michel clearly visible in the distance.
It was very still and sunny, so once set up we walked through the campsite and on to the beach. The tide was out, revealing a huge expanse of sands, some of which was quicksand, plus ribbons of dark clay. We walked barefoot for about two miles, towards Mont St Michel, then returned via the dunes and the beach. It was very quiet and peaceful and we pretty much had the beach to ourselves, although Cathy said she wished her glasses were a stronger prescription when I pointed out the man walking naked further down towards the sea! Back at the van, we sat out in the strong sunshine with a cup of tea. Cathy gave the van a good 'uck-out' and we both showered (not together - there isn't room!); we were a bit smoky (some would say well preserved) after our impromptu wood fire last night! We were both hungry and the plan was to walk into the village to get something to eat - surely somewhere would be open - how wrong we were! Every restaurant, bistro and cafe was closed. The hotel with its restaurant and bistro would normally have been open, but they'd closed for this week only to go on holiday. On our empty-stomached walk back to the van we discussed what we could eat. In the end I concocted a meal of chickpea dahl (from a tin someone left in the van) and cooked rice which I fried with shallots, garlic, chorizo and some egg - very strange but filling all the same. Still, there's a Boulangerie in the village so at least we'll be OK for breakfast.
|Mont St Michel|
|More bare feet - unusual for me|
|Put that tongue away!|
|Mont St Michel|
|Nice beach at St Jean le Thomas|
|Beach at St Jean le Thomas|
|Mont St Michel in the distance|
|Parked up on St Jean le Thomas Aire|
|We had the Aire all to ourselves|
|Aire Service Point|
|Is that it? Paul's poor made up meal as the restaurants were closed|