12. Jun, 2016

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SUNDAY 12-06-16

We were up in good time today as it was chores day. We wanted to get all the cleaning and washing done before we leave here tomorrow heading north.

The Chef worked really well today doing all of the housework on her own whilst I wasted my time down at Reception uploading and chatting.

We both did our hand washing, there being no washing machines here anyway.

Then it was a relaxation session in the sun, very nice but cloudier than it has been.

Lunch was toasted baguette to get rid of the excess bread we had from yesterday with peanut butter and marmalade (that's me) and strawberry jam (that's her).

This afternoon we went down to the swimming pool area, again we had it all to ourselves. The young kids we saw enjoying themselves down there yesterday seem to have gone home. Soaking up a bit of lovely hot sunshine on our old bones was a delight. We had to make the most of it as the weather is due to change. For me that is the beauty of this lifestyle. On the way to Villenueve-Loubet we were supposed to have visited St Tropez just before arriving there, but because of the weather we amended the plan. After leaving Villeneuve-Loubet we were to have travelled on toll roads non-stop to Lalley for four days of hiking, but because The Chef wasn't too good, and the weather forecast for that area even worse, we amended the plan again and came here to Camping Provence Vallée in Manosque, and because of the weather forecast for Lalley we have extended our stay from two to four days. But tomorrow we must leave.

We shall miss this campsite and the area, we are in the centre of the Provence National Parks of Luberon and Verdon. The region of Provence is much larger than that, but the National Parks are the real thing, containing all those locations where pictures of lavender, rolling hills etc are taken. We have agreed that we shall return here, next time for about two weeks and hiring a car for a week of it. That way we can tour the spectacular scenery in a small car rather than the motorhome, which I know would be The Chef's preference. We will of course need to hire one with nice grippy armrests for her.

This has been a nice relaxing four days, the weather has been delightful which makes all the difference in the world. Tomorrow we are heading north to Lalley, south of Grenoble, in the area where the photograph on our blog Home Page was taken last year. Originally planned as a four day stay for some hiking it will now be just one whole day in pouring rain, having first driven there in pouring rain, but at least we'll get a chance to look at the area for future visits.

This afternoon having returned from the swimming pool we finally got to drink the bottle of champagne I had been dragging around with us for the whole trip. Originally I planned to drink it at home to celebrate the gardens and driveway finally being finished, but aren't quite yet. Then I imagined we'd drink it on the beach at Villeneuve-Loubet, but the weather let us down, then it was to be at St Tropez, but St Tropez let us down, so finally rather than drag it any further we sat and drank it outside our wonderful mobile home.

Tonight The Chef is producing a traditional Sunday roast with the rotisseried chicken we bought yesterday, some roast potatoes, roast carrots and French green beans (got the foreign cuisine bit in). I had not planned to attach any photographs today. There are only so many pictures you can take of a campsite. But I will pop out and take a picture of the Chef's alfresco kitchen at which she toils as I type.

We are hoping to leave here at about 09:00 tomorrow morning, down to the supermarket for a big shop, then out of town, under the north/south toll road to Valensole, which we passed through earlier in the trip and is the heart of lavender growing,  just to see if the lavender is in bloom (it's supposed to be mid June to mid July) for a few photographs, then backtrack to the toll road, then north to Lalley where we plan to stay at a campsite which I believe has Wi-Fi. I will need to change the titles of the sub pages, squeezing another one in before we reach Lauterbrunnen in Switzerland. The problem is I am only allowed something like 12-14 characters in the title which makes it a bit challenging to come up with one that fits, hence 'France + 2016' rather than 'France, Switzerland & Germany'.

I must now go outside and take a photograph of The Chef's sweatshop.