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3rd July we arrive in France...We arrive and spend our first night on the forecourt of a garage near Lille.Next morning a game of frisby and were off to the coast , Dunkerque and Calais .The weather is nice so a swim is in order in Bray Dunes 3km north of Calais (Bray by name and nature). We spend a couple of nights along the sea front near Sangatte and we could see the white cliffs of Dover quiet clearly accross the bay. The water was very warm but rain was on the way so we move south. We head for Bolougne-sur-mer but it too is like Bray on a hot summer's day too commercial, so onward for the swim, to St.Etinne au-mont, a very quick dip as the water was dark and smelly. We moved inland and spent a few beautiful wet days in the Floret de Desvres.




Next we discovered a Creperie in Montreuil and indulged in savory and sweet, we just missed a music session the night before. This place has old tile floors, white washed walls, an outdoor loo, music in the garden on Thursdays and on the street on Sunday's the health board in Ireland would love it.. But what a Haven, the food was wonderful the waiter/owner was sooo......friendly that you just wanted to eat there everyday..... So no doubt we would be back........
We spent some time in Floret de Hesdin, where McIver and his new assisstant, mademoiselle Bronadh set up a system to collect rainwater as it is proving difficult to get any at garages since we came to France. It was a great night's rain and the invention worked a treat. The sun is back and we enjoy the forest and the small local towns where everyone is so friendly

Sunday is here and we head for Montreuil for music and more crepes. It was a postponed birthday celebration, and what a treat. The music was created by two frenchmen playing the blues, one sang and played guitar while the other had a case with a range of blues harmonica's. The waiter/owner joined them for a tune, we captured some tunes on video. It was a magical evening of fine food, local cider and entertainment











Now it was time to begin our trip towards Paris as Bronadh is heading home on Tuesday morning, the two weeks has flown and we will miss her, especially her complusive late night, early morning, middle of the day, card playing (switch, which she has mastered). We took some sun in a forest and guess what? played cards. Time for the Airport and to bid farewell for the moment, it is sad to see Bro go, we have had fun and she is easy company.



Chantilly..... these fish are over 1 foot long

The sun is up and we try to spend some time in it, it is so hot that we decide to head for the coastal breeze. We stay off the main roads to enjoy the small villages, towns and forests.France has a good energy feel, and we missed the freedom of the forests since we left Scandanivia. We spend a night in a campsite to recharge all our batteries, wash clothes and fill up with water. While it was packed with families it was a very quiet and friendly. The camp owners were very welcoming and helpful, there were four campsites in this small seaside town of Ault. Next morning we head for the Bibliotheque (Library) to send emails, but it is National Day in France, celebrating the Storming of the Bastile and it is closed. We are finding it difficult to get wireless connections to upload the website. Siesta time means that Bibliotheque's are closed for three hours, some only open specific days for two hours in the evenings, so we are not accessing our emails frequently.

13th June

Dave has decided to join us again, but only for a week this time. He is arriving on 19th we will stay coastal until then, when we plan to spend some time visiting Paris. It has been in the 30's for the last few days, we booked into a campsite at the beach in the little seaside village of Ault for a night, as they had only one night available. It seemed packed with families and we imagined it might be a bit wild, but looks can be deceptive, everyone was so friendly and by 9.30 we seemed to be the only ones still awake in the campsite. The campsite was run by a couple who lived on site and they too were helpful and friendly, it cost €14 for the night, great value at the seaside. We used the internet facility in the the local bibliotheque and enjoyed a day on the beach. Next day was Bastile day and there was a circus in town, bands were playing on the street and fireworks were the order of the day. We headed for the woods where we stayed for the next few days until it was time to head for Beauvais to pick Dave up. Beauvais is a little country Airport about 50km north of Paris and very accessable, from here we headed towards Paris in search of a campsite. We found the perfect one in L'isle de Adam a beautiful small town with a Le Gare(train station) on route to Paris north.


We thought we had just about seen every possible animal road sign, from the flashing light in Scotland for cows crossing, deer, moose and the cats in Upsalla, but this takes the biscuit. They have to be the best fed ducks ever, with the neighbourhood dropping by at every hour with their daily bread.











We took the train from here into Paris for the next two days and our ticket included the use of all public transport for the two days which cost us €72 for the three of us (great value). The Eifel Tower was our first destination but first we had to find our way out of the underground. What a bit of gas, we wandered around from one platform to another expecting never again to see the light of day. So after spending quiet a while figuring out the Paris metro and spending a penny.....A € take a pee for women, the men could do it for 60cent (Paris prices eh!) Daylight and there it was looking gigantic.. as we had just decided to walk up the steps to make it a more memorable visit. But first things first, grub and then we were on our way. It was a mighty climb,

even though it is only possible to climb to the first two levels and take the lift from there.We were able to see all the places that we wanted to visit from here and the plan was to get to them today as tomorrow would be shopping day.


Below-- view from top... could this be the Burren Co.Clare??

We walked from the Arc De Triomphe De

View from second level

Eifel tower and tourists..


Gustav Eifel at top


L'etoile down the Av.Des Champs Elysees past the Lido on to the Concorde, accross Boulevard St.Germain and on to Notre Dame. Grub time again this time in a cafe on the doorstep of Notre Dame. Berets were the purchase of the day. We made inquiries at the tourist office about the Tour de France as we could see preparations were underway for its arrival. The guy there told me that it was arriving at 3pm on Sunday, I thanked him and headed off, he came running after us to tell of the best vantage point but when I informed him that we were just interested so that we could be out of town before it arrived as we didn't want to get caught up in it he was surprised and amused. later when we returned to ask directions he was busy telling his work collegues and they all had a laugh at this Irish woman in Paris.


                                                          Arc de Triumph ..and mad traffic

Oscar..Yet each man kills the thing he loves

River Seine

It was the bells!!!!

We took the metro to Pere'Lachaise cemetry to bid good tidings to Oscar Wilde and Jim Morrison, before heading back to L'isle de Adam and a chinese take away with a difference. It was a bit like a deli and we went for samples of everything, well earned.

Flowers are in full bloom everywhere we visit each more spectacular than the next. All towns and villages are decorated with colours and varieties.


Display at Chateau de Gisors












Shopping day has arrived, and we head off to shop 'till we drop as Dave had a big bag to fill before leaving. We headed for the Montmarte but nothing took our fancy. We stopped off at alittle shop called Mamie's which had been recommended, it was a quaint little secondhand place but as there were three people already there no room to rummage

Taking the baby for a walk                   The Moulin Rouge with it's striking red windmill was on route as was the Sacre Cour, both very impressive.

We met this fellow shopper out with her basket but she didn't seem to be having much luck either as she just had her favourite teddy and a flower.

We came we saw we left,

very satisfied with our visit to 'Paris


Well boule me over...not for the fainthearted

 We headed north for quieter places, staying in forests and even spent a night at the seaside. There we had a drink in a Turish bar where we were entertained by belly dancing and live music on a stringed instrument, what a treat. We visited Dieppe, a fishing port and bought fresh fish. Then we stopped off in Rouen, it has it's own Notre Dame and some beautiful shops and Dave's bag was soon full. Boules has become the new cards. Here we have a game near Beauvais before Dave flew for home.It was a very hot day, suddenly the sky turned black and a scary wind blew the Tigin door through the frame. We heard later that there had been a Tornedo just north of us and in England causing devestation to campsites and villages.





Lazing on a sunny afternoon..bit like Cloontia




29th July.........

So now its a drive into the west for the 34th Bretagne internation celtic festival .It promises to be good craic, with Ireland as the featured guests this year.