While friends and family spent the Easter weekend sheltering from rain and snow, Damon and I got sunstroke as we made our way south to Nouvelle Aquitaine. Seriously.
The sun certainly had his hat on but – perhaps foolishly – we didn’t follow his lead.
That will teach us to have kept the top firmly down on the car as we drove 800km from Lille in the Nord département to Castillonnès in Lot-et-Garonne. It was sunshine for almost the whole journey down, over 2 days.
We stopped over at a charming chambre d’hôte, Le Petit Nançay (below) in Thénioux, in the Loire valley. (The sun had gone in by the time I took this photo.) Our hosts were very welcoming and we had pre-ordered a meal, which they served in our gîte, as they were renovating the main building.
As soon as we finished, we took to bed with every blanket we could find over us to help us sweat out our sunstroke. Fortunately, that did the trick.
The following morning, we set off on the second leg of our journey south.
Sadly, after 4 days of catching up with friends, eating well and visiting villages and vineyards, it was time to head home again.
“After 4 days of catching up with friends, eating well and visiting villages and vineyards, it was time to head home again”
On the way back, we stopped over in central Chartres. I’ve never been to the city before – we found it pretty and the people friendly.
Our chambre d’hôte, Le Clos Chedeville (below), was charming too, and our book-lined room gave onto a delightful garden.
Our host also suggested that we try a very stylish restaurant by the cathedral – and it proved a great recommendation. The filet de bœuf Rossini was out of this world.
On Thursday, we made the final leg of our journey home.
The weather wasn’t so great that day, so we kept the roof up. Allowing you to soak up the sunshine may be one of the benefits of a sports car, but they can limit how much you can bring back with you.
That said, we vacuum-packed our clothes and tucked them behind our seats in the ‘cabin’ of the car – which allowed us to manage to fit 70 litres of wine in the boot. That’s an all-time best.
We had such a good break, we’re now starting to plan a return trip – or maybe even two – next month…