Saturday, July 05, 2014

percy needs an MOT

Percy is due for his MOT, so I’m heading back to the UK for a bit.  I booked the trip ages ago, thinking that I would have been well and truly installed in Vieuzos, but paperwork has been slow and my departure feels far too swift, I’ve hardly got my feet on the ground and I’m heading off again.  But go I shall and will make a good trip of it too.

The journey started well, with the dates of a new month not corresponding with the days of the week, so I set of a day early, thinking my ferry was on Tuesday the 2nd, and not on the Wednesday when it actually departs. I had an extra day to get to Calais. The early start was not without reason, as I was to find out en route.  First stop, Chalets Tendille on the outskirts  of Toulouse, to pay deposit for my chalet.  There was an offer on special offer, almost the exact same building that I had chosen, but in a thicker and so more solid insulating wood, with higher quality window and doors, floor included (the other model it was extra) all for less that my original choice.  Even with an additional window I am saving on my original purchase price.  I had nearly put a cheque in the post to save time!!

Chalet ordered, my next scheduled stop was at the channel, some four days later, so I took my time.  An online calculator suggested that the journey, using motorways, should take about 12 hours.  I tend not to use paid motorways, as my speed doesn’t warrant the extra expense, plus it’s rather nice to see some of the countryside up close and pass through some of the smaller interesting towns along the way.  I increased my driving by half to 18 hours and wasn’t far out.  With a few diversions taken into account it actually took 19.5 hours for the 817 mile journey, comfortably spread over four days with plenty of time to stop off along the way.

To break the journey I did gardens, gardens of all shapes and sizes, in search of inspiration and ideas for when I get going.  The first, a newly opened site, linked to the art  museum of Cecile Sarbourdy , an interesting concept of entertainment and ecological ideas, demonstrating green manures, a mixed fruit orchard, herb gardens and a demonstration garden of the huge variety of plants within the cabbage (brassica) family, along with more formal, established gardens to the front of the museum.  A fascinating idea and somewhere I’d like to revisit in a few years to see how it develops.

part of the cabbage collection

an orchard, the first season after planting

green manures, planted for all to see.  Thew will be dug in to the
ground or composted before the seed sets.

an older formal part of the gardens

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