As we sat eating our dinner in our free, L’Hospitalet Pres D’Andorre sleepy spot, raindrops were falling on our head or, rather, on Harley’s head!! Yup, Sebo’s rooflight had sprung a leak! Fortunately, for us, not him, it was falling on him rather than our soft furnishings so he was promptly moved to a place of safety i.e. back to his bed under the table, and a bucket strategically placed to catch the water. Another job to add to The List!
Thankfully, by the time we awoke the next morning, the rain had ceased and the almost half-filled bucket could be safely emptied and stowed back in it’s rightful place in Sebo’s garage for now! Good job we thought to pack a tube of Sikaflex into the toolbox before we left – guess where Roy’s heading as soon as everything’s dried-out?? Yup, up on the roof to find the hole and fill it!
The drive down from L’Hospitalet took us back over Le Col De Puymorens and down the Tet Valley. 10% inclines and hairpin bends were the order of the day, a true rollercoaster ride, with Roy expertly engine-braking to spare Sebo’s brake discs (just as well I wasn’t at the wheel!!!). No smell of burning was detected on THIS descent – fair play!
Who knew there were sooooo many small,quiet ski resorts in The French Pyrenees??? Not I and that’s for sure! Snow looked good too! And to think I’ve spent many a week in January praying for snow in The Alps when, quite possibly, I could have been here, skiing, rather than praying OR queuing with thousands of others to get on the chairlifts! Doh!
We passed through several, pretty villages, including Villefranche-de-Conflent – a UNESCO World Heritage Site on account of it’s huge fortress. We eventually stopped at an Intermarche in Vernet-Les-Bains – unfortunately, the supermarket was closed for lunch until 3pm (only in France!) BUT I managed to get the laundry done at their self-service laundromat in the car park whilst we ate our lunch. Dead handy, that!
Lidl beckoned – and, for us, it was a treat! Say what you like about Lidl but, in our experience, the French ones are THE best for great choice and prices! Needless to say, we stocked-up with goodies and continued on our journey, happy in the knowledge that we now had enough food to last us for eons!
Our destination for Wednesday was one of France’s “Plus Beaux Villages” (prettiest villages), Eus, and it certainly lived up to it’s reputation. We managed to find the teeniest of free car parks, at the foot of the village, amongst the almond and cherry trees, which were in full bloom, with an awesome view of The Pyrenees from Sebo’s windscreen! The village itself was clinging to the hillside behind us so, after lunch, we took ourselves off to explore. Pretty? You bet! Touristy? Not necessarily at this time of year but we can imagine it would be thronged in July and August. No “tat” shops were obvious but several artist’s studios were advertising their wares-one can only imagine they were drawing their inspiration from the spectacular scenery surrounding them.
Our return to Sebo and the view of the sun setting over the snow-capped mountains yielded the best sky we’ve seen on this trip to date. The photos are good but they in no way do it justice! Awesome!
We slept soundly in our peaceful spot before pootling on down the road to Perpignan where we’d hoped Perpignan Camping Cars would live up their website promise of “no appointment necessary for repairs” and take a look at Sebo’s ailing fridge. An empty promise, as it turned-out, since we were informed that we would actually need “un rendezvous” for such a repair, and the earliest they could offer was March 28th!! Errrr, no thanks, we’ll live with it for a bit longer! Uggggh!
Our next destination, to regroup our thoughts-and plug Sebo into a decent electricity supply to cool his fridge-was an ACSI campsite, Le Florida, in Elne, just a 4km hike from The Med. By this stage, the sun was blazing and, within a few minutes of our arrival, our awning was out, our table and chairs retrieved from Sebo’s garage and we were eating lunch al fresco! Mental note to buy sunscreen! With the forecast set fair for the weekend, we decided to stay put for the weekend and do a bit of “planning”…a bit of anathema for Team Sebo, it has to be said! The campsite here is getting a revamp in the pool area at the moment so it’s not necessarily the quietest place we’ve ever stayed but it’s nice enough and the recently revamped unisex toilet & shower block has a certain Disneyesque quality about it! Has to be seen to be appreciated, I feel, but pretty sure the kids love it!