(As requested by Moira: Picture of Ruby on a trip to Cork last weekend)
We’ve arrived in our first campsite on the edge of the city of Rennes, a couple of hours south of Cherbourg. It’s hot here or maybe we’re just not used to anything about 19 degrees celsius yet… I think it’s 100… oh, ok it’s not, its 27. The campsite is in the middle of a huge park with walking paths, cycle paths, sports fields, swimming pool and lots and lots of trees. We’re a ten minute bus journey from the city but all I can hear is birdsong.
Before we left I had a request from Julie D. for information about travelling in a motor home (or camper van not sure which to call our home… her name is Ruby.) So from time to time I’m going to include some practical details that may or may not be of interest to you. Feel free to ask questions in the comments and I’ll answer if I can.
(Road to Rosslare)
Ruby has a small fridge with a little icebox. The fridge runs on electricity when we are connected to a power supply at the campsite or at home. It runs on the van battery when we are driving and then when we stop by the side of the road it runs on gas.
(The almost empty fridge)
I, of course, knew all that before we left but being new to the whole concept of having everything to hand didn’t fill the fridge…. Anyway, we left the ferry at about 10.30am this morning and promised ourselves a nice cup of tea as soon as we found a lay-by. Every other time we’ve been in France on the bike or in the car we’ve stopped at motorway services where you can get petrol/diesel, visit the restaurant, use the toilets, buy souvenirs, groceries and even beer. But this time we don’t need restaurants and we have a big tank so we stop less for fuel and we buy groceries at the supermarket (well… we will just as soon as we get our bearings.) And no one really needs souvenirs… There’s lots of these motorway services but there’s also lots of the other places. The places with only parking and toilets. They are called Aires and they are probably going to be our new best friends.
Unfortunately, there’s not lots of them on the road from Cherbourg to Rennes, feeling a little dehydrated, we decided to stop at the first motorway services place. But it was full! Literally, there wasn’t even one car parking space. We had to leave. Sad Campers 😦 We had been so looking forward to our first cup of tea in France. On and on we drove, the temperature rising all the time. At 1pm on the dot the first Aire came into view. Happy Campers 🙂 There was room for us to park and the toilets were not too bad. (We do have a toilet in the motor home but I’ll explain another time why we use other toilets as much as we can!) That’s when I realised I hadn’t brought any lunch stuff (well, I was still thinking food = restaurants…) there was no bread, no cheese, no salad. There was some milk – possibly of dodgy quality.There were biscuits – possibly of dodgy nutritional value. Fortunately, I love breakfast and had remembered it so we had some great Irish porridge oats for our first meal in France.
Viva la Flahavans! Mairead.