Good morning. I hope you’re all waking up to bright sunshine and blue skies.
We have had a long but nice few days travelling as far down to a campsite not to far from Barcelona.
Our journey started Sunday morning, not to early and getting a lunch time train through the channel tunnel. Although we were hoping for better weather than the uk was having we drove through high winds and rain to the point we nearly had to pull over as we couldn’t see the road.
But after a while the skies became to clear and the rain stopped as we headed further south. The wind was still a little tricky in our van but we survived.
Our first nights stop was in a little campsite just south of Paris in a village called Olivet. It was the last night of the season for the campsite which I still think is odd that they fully close down. We had a woodland pitch and when we woke in the morning realised was surrounded on two sides by fields.
Arriving hungry we were very happy to discover that there was a pizza van parked up on site and still open. So we parked up, ordered and whilst the pizza was cooking organised the van. It was the best French pizza, cooked to perfection. You can’t beat a good pizza oven.
Desert was a piece of vanilla sponge wedding cake and a cup of tea. We really are now officially a married couple 😂
The next morning we felt refreshed and continued our journey. I was quite excited as today’s stop was to be at the Chateau De La Lande.
For any of you that don’t know we are fans of Escape to the Chateau with Dick and Angel. Chateau De La Lande appeared on Escape to the Chateau DIY which is the follow up programme.
Each week Stephanie who owns the chateau produces a Vlog on youtube called the chateau diaries. It often features some of her family, mum Isobelle and husband Percy, Gerry her Scottish brother and some others from the Chateau. Today we met all of them plus David and a volunteer Ian.
We parked the van in the court yard and met the Peacocks. They were quite happy sitting on the roof of a car and watching our every move.
We then headed in and came into the kitchen. What an impressive room. She has two huge old fashioned ovens, one original from the chateau. She has a huge dresser with beautiful blue and white china displayed on it.
Just as Stephanie, David and Ian made us a cup of tea Rich told Stephanie how I loved the programme and was so excited to be here. How it is Jo’s moment of relaxation each week and time out from what is happening at home. Although I have to say my husband seemed positively star struck. He was so excited. A new huge fan who will be watching each week.
Stephanie asked what we would like to eat and set off to pick tomatoes to make tomato soup whilst we got to tour the Chateau.
What an amazing place. Every room was filled with treasures and something else to catch your eye.
Our room was almost the size of the upstairs of our house with a bathroom you could dance in, it was so big.
We explored all the the time outside meeting the sheep and taking in the breathtaking views.
Jerry came to find us and let us know it was time for dinner. We sat down to a very prettily laid out table and warm bread with Stephanie’s home made tomato soup. Now I’m not a fan of tomato soup but boy this was delicious. Thank fully Stephanie has now shared the recipe with us.
Next was to be Steak with the nicest roast potatoes, roast carrots and broccoli. For desert David bought out his home made watermelon sorbet with a honey crumble on the side. David, you make the best sorbet.
Rich asked if he could have an Irish coffee to follow which had to be the entertaining highlight of the evening. Stephanie and her family had never made an Irish coffee but gave it a go. We could here the laughter from the kitchen and a short while later Stephanie and Jerry appeared with the coffee. Irish coffee number two! Then just as Rich was about to sample it Isabelle also came out to witness the tasting. It was a tense moment, but sure enough it was a hit. Well done guys.
If any of you would like to see the coffee in the making please have a watch of the Chateau Diaries episode 84. https://youtu.be/xI7R7RmDFFw
We are chuffed to bits that we were mentioned in the vlog. It made our evening watching it. I should mention that Stephanie and her family also treated us to the dinner as we were newlyweds.which was very kind of them and very thoughtful.
The next morning after chatting with our new friends we departed to head towards an abandoned French village. However the weather had followed us from Blighty and we were in the midst of horrendous rain and thunder. So our plans altered and we headed south. A few hours later and in the dry with 22° we arrived in a small campsite just outside of Toulouse. We are discovering that all the campsites we have stopped at in Europe have much better facilities than at home and spotlessly clean and tidy. Although outside the campsite for this seemed a little rough so after a good nights sleep and an easy supper of chicken noodle soup, we headed yet further south to Perpignan.
So the south coast of France is windy today, lots of kite surfers out in the sea. We went to have a swim in the indoor pool, but I dipped my toe and had second thoughts. Rich just jumped in🥶apparently it was a little chilly and soon regretted it, but if you can’t swim, best go have a cocktail.
The restaurant seemed to have a good menu so we chose pork wrapped in Chorizo for myself and steak for Rich. A good move as no one feels like cooking and especially washing up after lots of driving. Again another top notch meal. I don’t eat pork at home but in France it’s normally very tender and this was no exception.
When the high winds had died down the following morning I headed out to the path that followed the beach to grab a few geocaches. It was a beautiful morning. Extremely bright and sunny and warm if you are sheltered from the wind.
Thursdays drive was to get us down to a campsite just outside of Barcelona. A very scenic drive with mountains and olive groves. It was going so well until I managed to miss a turn off the motorway and ended up with lots of Spanish traffic round the city itself. Oh well another to add to experience.
When we eventually reached the campsite we discovered we had a pitch facing the sea, just a few motorhomes though had pitched in front of us, although today they have either left or gone out for the day so we have a perfect view of the sea.
The campsite itself has so many different types of pitches varying from motorhomes to little cabins to prepitched tents. They even have dish washers in the communal, something I think English campsites should introduce.
When we arrived we again treated ourselves to dinner in the restaurant and a cocktail. What a lovely way to relax at the end of the day.