Thursday 9 October 2014

Day 6 - St Valery en Caux to Coudeville Plage

Wednesday 8 October 2014

We both slept well.  I particularly liked it at St Valery as I could hear the sound of the surf as I lay in bed. It was quite windy through the night and, guess what?  Yes, it was pluie chats et chiens when it was time to get up!  I dressed and headed out to empty the loo while all was quiet.  Then Cathy had a shower while I walked into the town to buy a baguette and a croissant.  I took a bag to keep everything dry but the baguette was too long to fit, so I had to break it in half then eat some to get it to fit!  Back at the van Cathy had cleaned up and had the kettle on.  She decided to have a healthy breakfast - an orange, fresh fig and a croissant.  I too decided to try the healthy breakfast option so had a glass of orange juice - with my 3/4 of a baguette with Normandy butter and a pot of coffee -.-

All secured, I moved the van to drop grey water and we headed off.  The plan was to head for Beuvron en Auge.  This is one of the 'Villages de France', recognised as an unspoilt village of the region.  On arrival we could see it was lovely, with timbered houses and the covered 'Laves' by the river, where the women washed the clothes and gossiped (and kept out of the way of the men).  We found the Aire and parked up and, as soon as I switched off the engine, the heavens opened!  Luckily it only lasted a few minutes so we were able to head out and have a walk around the village.  It was lovely with some small shops to buy the local cider and calvados - sadly they were all shut!  This is what comes of having our summer holiday in October.  We needed to pay for the Aire and get a jeton (token) to top up with water.  These are available in the local bar - which is shut all week!   So again we've been f****d over by the 2014 gremlins.  We fancied some lunch and the only place open was the Creperie.  But it was a good choice as the galletes and local cider were very tasty.  Lunch done we walked through the village and decided we should move on.  So we returned to the van and plugged in the coordinates for an Aire by the beach just north of Granville, one of our favourite parts of Normandy.

Two hours later we arrived at the Aire at Coudeville Plage.  Levelled up, I went to pay for a ticket at the machine and it refused all of my cards - the gremlins kicking the shit out of us again. So like the French, I ignored it, put a sign in the windscreen to say my cards weren't accepted and we walked down to the beach.  It was a lovely, very long, sandy beach and we had a good walk in the salty wind to blow away the long drive.  Returning to the van I tried my cards one more time - no luck. But the sun was shining so out came the chairs and we sat outside with an aperitif (or two) and some peanuts, watching some French motorhomers clean their vans, then set up their awning and a long table for dinner - who says you can't spread out on an Aire!  A short while later a lady arrived in a van from the local campsite, read my note and said in French that I can pay her in cash - problem solved. As the sun dropped we put on a fleece and enjoyed the fresh air amongst the pines, hearing the surf in the background.  With the sound of the French oldies laughing as they eat together, we started to relax.  This would be a perfect Aire and beach in the summer, but in Autumn it's ready to close down and batten the hatches for the coming winter.  Dinner tonight is pasta carbonara, so I'm off to cook while Cathy sits outside and reads about Flamenco in Spain - I bet it's warmer there.  Maybe next year......

Waiting for the (free!) ferry
Onboard the ferry
Beuvron en Auge
Lunch stop at Beuvron en Auge
Sadly closed!
Pork scratchings!
Coudeville Plage Aire
Dinner time

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