Exciting News- oh, and the Dordogne.

Exciting news- Oh, and the Dordogne.   It was a real scorcher as we left the Atlantique-Pyrenees coast on our way to the Dordogne. We were sad to see the mountains disappearing in the distance, but the new and changing landscape soon captured us. At first, the landscape flattened out, but it soon began to rise again as we entered the hills and valleys of the Perigord region. It’s just unbelievably pretty; forests carpet the hills; huge rivers carve their way through the valleys, and trees make cool archways above you as you drive along the winding roads. Our new home for the next two weeks was a converted stone barn in the tiny village of Audrix; just about 2 miles from the town of Le Bugue, which straddles the Veziere river. The house is gorgeous; with beamed ceilings, a small pool and stunning views across the valley. When we weren’t out exploring, we spent the days lazing around the pool and the evenings stargazing. In fact, we ended up doing just that more often than we had planned, because, just like the U.K, France experienced unseasonably high temperatures last week; the thermometer topped 40 degrees for several days- just too hot for walking around! Then, at the end of this week, the rain arrived; with thunderstorms and torrential downpours. THE POOL DAYS WERE JUST WHAT WE NEEDED, TALK ABOUT STUPID HOT. I COULD NOT BE DONE WITH WALKING ROUND SIGHTSEEING WHEN IT’S STUPID HOT. WITHIN 2 MINUTES OF GETTING OUT OF THE MOTOR I WOULD BE DRIPPING WET WITH SWEAT. (HOW ATTRACTIVE!!) SO LOUNGING ROUND THE POOL IN MY BUDGIE SMUGGLERS WAS THE RIGHT THING TO DO. (WITWOO….. I CAN HEAR YOU WOLF WHISTLING LADIES, CALM DOWN, CALM DOWN.) OBVIOSULY I’M STILL DELUDED FROM THE HEAT 🙂 THEN THE RAIN -THANK HEAVENS FOR THAT. IT MADE LIFE MORE BEARABLE. I FINALLY MANAGED TO GET MYSELF A “CARTE DE PECHE” WHICH IS A FISHING LICENCE. WELL I KNEW THE FRENCH RULES AROUND FISHING WERE COMPLICATED…….. BUT KIN’ELL I WAS NOT AWARE HOW COMPLEX THEY ARE. LET’S JUST PUT IT THIS WAY- I’M GOING TO SPEND THE NEXT FEW RAINY DAYS GENNING UP ON WHAT’S WHAT. “WHY BOTHER STEVIE YOU’VE GOT A LICENCE TO FISH JUST GET OUT THERE.” I HEAR YOU SAY… WELL, DEAR READER- THE BAILIFFS OUT HERE ARE ALL TOOLED UP!!! PROPER TOOLED UP WITH BLEEDING SHOOTERS, THEY ALSO HAVE THE POWER TO IMPOUND YOUR CAR.. NOW WITH MY LUCK, IT WOULD END UP AS A PROPER RIGHT OLD LEAFY DAY OUT. IF I WINGED IT I WOULD PROBABLY END UP GETTING SHOT IN THE LEG, BY SOME BRIT HATING, JUMPED UP, TOOLED UP LITTLE HITLER, WHO WOULD DRIVE OFF INTO THE SUNSET IN MY MOTOR, LAUGHING AT ME SHOUTING OUT “YOU SHOULD HAF LEARNED ZE RULES YOU BRITISH PIG” ALL THIS WOULD BE RATHER INCONVENIENT, HENCE THE GENNING UP.       When the weather was on our side, we did manage to get out and about, and discover what makes this part of France so popular with tourists, particularly us Brits. Beautiful medieval villages and towns are scattered around the landscape. Here are just some of the ones we visited: Limeil: a gorgeous village, with breath-taking views of where the Veziere meets the Dordogne. Tremolat: beautiful, with a lovely central square. Les- Eyzies: an important site in the area’s prehistoric past. We had had no idea how the area was so central to the study of Neanderthal and Cro-Magnon man. Loads of caves and cliffs have evidence of their settlement. We’re such geeks! Gouffre de Proumeyssac– this ancient cave was literally on our doorstep, and as well as providing some respite from the searing heat, we were able to see amazing formations of stalactites, stalagmites and columns. Beynac– a fortified village, clinging to a precipice overlooking the Dordogne. Castelnaud- a hilltop village, with an awesome chateau, full of history and a brilliant museum of medieval armour and weaponry. Sarlat- the quintessential medieval village- most photographed of all the Dordogne towns. It was very impressive, but sections of it were quite touristy. St.Cyprien– large town, full of Brits. Roque de Gageac: the best of the bunch in my opinion. A tiny village, literally clinging to the cliff-face, with the Dordogne running alongside. From here, we took a boat-trip along the river. Fabulous!   WELL, NOW I KNOW WHAT ALL THE FUSS ABOUT THE DORDONGE IS. IT IS A STUNNING PART OF FRANCE. THERE ARE SO MANY RIVERS HERE. WHILST HAVING LUNCH AT RIVERSIDE RESTAURANT, I SPENT MORE TIME WATCHING AND FEEDING THE CARP AND CHUBB IN THE RIVER BELOW US, THAN CHATTING TO MY BELOVED. I JUST COULDN’T HELP IT. (MY BAD.) THEY DON’T HALF LIKE A CHATEAU ROUND HERE. THERE WERE 4 WITHIN A 3 MILE STRETCH OF THE DORDOGNE RIVER. ONLY ONE WAS OPEN TO THE PUBLIC- ALL THE OTHERS WERE PRIVATELY OWNED. THE FAMILIES THAT OWNED THEM CAN’T BE SHORT OF A FEW BOB. (LUCKY GITS!!) STUNNING -JUST STUNNING.   But the highlight of the week for us was seeing the first glimpse of our grand-child. Yes, you did read that right- Jenny and her partner Rich are expecting a baby!!!!!! We are so excited at the thought of becoming grandparents, and have been desperate to share the news with family and friends. Now that Jen has had her 12 week scan, she’s happy for us to make it public on here, but we won’t be making a big announcement at this stage on social media. We figured that those of you who are following our adventure on the blog will be able to send your congratulations on here if you wish. For us, it’s made the trip even more unforgettable- and the timing couldn’t have been more perfect. Let’s just say, hearing the news was the best birthday present I have ever had! And we’ll be back home at the beginning of September, just in time to feel the baby kicking. Happy days! ME- A GRANDAD!!!!!!!!!!!!! I AM REALLY LOOKING FORWARD TO THIS. I WILL HAVE THE PERFECT EXCUSE TO BE ABLE TO CARRY ON ACTING LIKE A BIG KID MYSELF, ALL IN THE NAME OF ENTERTAINING THE LITTLE ONE. I CAN SEE ME GETTING A FEW BOLLOCKINGS FOR SPOILING THE LITTLE ONE AS WELL, AS THE FRENCH SAY C’EST-LA-VIE. I WILL ALSO BE ABLE TO RECYCLE ALL MY OLD DAD JOKES AS GRANDAD JOKES. HAPPY DAYS………… 🙂

15 thoughts on “Exciting News- oh, and the Dordogne.”

    1. Thanks Sally. Best birthday ever! Hope the end of term comes round quickly for you. Hang on in there with Poppy. One day it will all be like a terrible dream! Xx

  1. Woo hoo how exciting. Hope all goes well for Jenny and Rich and you enjoy the rest of your adventure. I love reading your blog xx

  2. Just caught up with your latest blog….OMG that’s fantastic news about Jenny and Richard!! So happy for you all…….the best news 😊…..exciting times ahead and a very good reason to want to return (apart from being back amongst great neighbours) Absolutely loving your updates and we do have a chuckle!xx

  3. Still following you with avid interest. What an amazing adventure.
    Congratulations on the news of you becoming grandparents soon. It’s great fun.
    Continue to enjoy yourselves and safe travel.
    Love Judith x

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *