Tag Archives: Transport

Whilst the cat’s away, the mice do play!

24 May

So, taking the opportunity whilst Trish is in Nigeria, Richard decided to pop down to the true south of France – Provence! Here is his little story.

I booked a tiny self-contained flat through Airbnb in Sanary-sur-Mer which is just west of Toulon. I wanted to visit the historic port of Toulon, to find out why the French Admirals had based their fleet there during the Napoleonic wars. I now know why – it’s vast and well sheltered. Prevailing winds made it easy for the French to come out and pretty hard for the English to get in. Which is why Nelson had the port blockaded. And quite successful it was too until a storm blew up, scattering the blockading fleet and allowing the French out. It’s a long story but eventually they joined up with the Spanish fleet and got beaten at the Battle of Trafalgar, by Nelson.

Sanary-sur-Mer is a lovely seaside town with pretty streets, neat houses and a gorgeous seafront. It’s expensive, mind you. I chose not to eat out here, preferring a neighbouring town which is slightly downmarket.

Today was a lovely sunny day, with temperatures of 27 deg C, which is only five degrees less than in Abuja, Nigeria! And the sea sparkled, as only the Mediterranean can in summer. The holiday season is a long way off getting into full swing but everything was open and freshly painted. So I got the full version without the crowds. Bet it’s not like this in August!

The journey from Montolieu to Toulon takes about four-and-a-half hours. I posted the journey on BlaBlaCar and immediately received six bookings going. Of course, it was a railway strike day. Thank you SNCF – I made €69 instead of you! Tomorrow, for the return journey, I’ve got three bookings, as far as Nimes, then I’m on my own but it does give me the chance to meander a bit and not to worry about meeting strangers in strange places at fixed times!

New wheels

4 Jan

Yesterday we drove down to Dorset to take delivery of our new car and trailer. Well, new to us as the car is a 20 years old Fiat Tempra Estate with a 1.9 litre Diesel engine. The trailer is in good condition with a loading ramp and four wheels on two axles.

I drove it back in dry but overcast conditions with Trish and Nettles following in the Citroen. It seems to be doing about 50 mpg; not bad for a car that has done nearly a quarter of a million miles! To be honest, we paid £100 oir it, which means the trailer behind it cost six times the price of the car! But now we have the means to transport all manner of stuff when we are in France. We reckon we have more than enough scrap metal at the Peace Factory which we can sell and show a brilliant return on our investment.

I’ll post a photo of the new wheels when I can find enough light for a good shot.