15. Jun, 2016

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TUESDAY 14-06-16

We had rain during the night, presumably that which was forecast for all day yesterday arriving late.

After scrubbing up I uploaded yesterdays bits having figured out how to connect to the internet here for my free hour. Meanwhile The Chef popped up to Reception to pick up the baguette she ordered yesterday. On her return it looked as if they buy their baguettes in bulk and freeze them, as ours wasn't the least bit crusty, though its colouring suggested it should have been.

We had decided to spend the morning walking in to Lalley village, and then after lunch go for a hike around the valley. The temperature today is much cooler than we've been used to and spent the day wearing our lightweight fleece jackets.

The village of Lalley was totally devoid of any social amenities, no shops, no school, and judging by the very high percentage of houses closed up and looking neglected, very few inhabitants. At one time it must have been a proper community as the Marie, the mayor's office was once a school and a reasonable sized building not far from the campsite was once a hotel. It's understandable as there's nothing down here except a bit of farming, so no work to speak of, and certainly not enough children to support a school. When the bus arrived back from school we saw a mum collecting two small children and that was it.

The only reason I chose Lalley was because it was a short distance off the main road. There are lots of small communities down here but I didn't fancy driving along miles of narrow roads to reach their campsites.

Having walked around we were so pleased we stayed back at Manosque for those extra days rather than come here for the planned three days hiking. We will be glad to be climbing out of the valley in the morning and heading for Annecy for an overnight stop before entering Switzerland.

This afternoons hike was very pleasant, we picked up a map of the local trails and picked one that was easy and took us to a spot called Eymoudo, about five miles in all, and not too much climbing involved. We didn't want aching limbs before arriving in Switzerland to do lots more hiking, with better views and photo opportunities. Today I only took the pocket camera with us as I was already carrying our Macs and bits and pieces in my backpack.

On our return to the campsite there were one or two new neighbours, nearly all of the campers here are Dutch caravanners. They must come for the novelty of seeing mountains. Perhaps if there had been more French here we wouldn't have had such a problem with the flies.

This evenings meal was pork steaks done in the slow cooker whilst we were out. It made a nice change, it's the first time we've used the slow cooker on this trip, but as the temperature is now dropping I've a horrible feeling we're going to be eating more hot and hearty meals