The End of the Road

 

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The end is nigh!

Our year on the road has sadly come to an end, although to be precise, it has been 13 months and 5 days, and we both feel very proud of our achievement and have no regrets whatsoever.  It would be fair to say that we are also feeling a bit deflated today, but I am sure that, as we adapt to our new ‘sedentary’ life in the next few weeks, we will be just fine and happy with our surroundings and we still have our school holidays to look forward to for the next couple of years, the first one being only in a couple of months…

 

We spent 2 days in Broglie, still sunny and warm, and I loved walking down to the water mill with Beano, so beautiful and picturesque, and now sporting a brand new roof.  On Thursday morning, we followed the cycle route for a bit towards Bernay just for a change and ended up in the water gardens and the old village centre before returning to the motorhome aire.  The aire filled up both days, confirming my impression that it has grown in popularity since we first discovered it a few years ago.

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Crossing the Seine at Rouen on our way to Neufchâtel-en-Bray
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The aire at Neufchâtel-en-Bray, one of the best around
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Modern shower block and laundry facilities at Neuchâtel-en-Bray motorhome aire Sainte-Claire

From Broglie, we went straight to Neufchâtel-en-Bray, one of the best aires around, with its new shower block with disable facilities and a washing machine and tumble drier, which I used again (the machine that is, preferring to dry clothes in the sun) my last lot of laundry before returning to the UK.  Once again, we enjoyed the superb walk along the ‘voie verte’ cycle path that leads all the way to Dieppe, 34km away, and stopped to admire the idyllic pastoral views with the cattle grazing on lush green fields.

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Idyllic views along the Voie Verte at Neufchâtel-en-Bray

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We did a bit of shopping and I stocked up on crocheting supplies at La Foir’ Fouille and bought a new pair of Ipanema flip flops at La Halle for next summer as they were going half price and I couldn’t resist.  All these shops are a mere 5-minute walk from the aire, which makes it even more desirable a place to stop.  We also took Beano for his usual check-up and worming tablet at the vet in town, signalling the end of the trip.

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The Somme was next on our schedule, stopping at the aire in Quend-Plage-le-Pins, which now has a new barrier-operate entry and exit system costing 8 euros a day.  Once again, it was very busy, being a Sunday, and the town itself was very lively with visitors, giving it a very happy feeling and jolly atmosphere.  It was, however, a little too windy to enjoy a day on the beach and the orange flag was up with the loud speakers warning people it was dangerous to swim, but we still enjoyed our walk on the seafront and many people seemed undeterred by the wind, relaxing on the beach.

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Beautiful setting for Quend-Plage-les-Pins motorhome aire

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Beautifulwild flowers by motorhome aire
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Attractive Tourist Information Office at Quend-Plage-les-Pins
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Busy holiday town
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Breezy and dangerous to swim in the sea today!
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Happy childhood memories!
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Perhaps it was a better day for tree-top walking!  To be found in woods adjacent to motorhome aire

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Our next and final stop was at pretty Wissant, Pas de Calais, so handy for the Eurotunnel, and always a delight to visit.  Once more, we went for a long and relaxin morning walk on the beach, along the sand dunes and the attractive view of the town from the shore.  It was cloudy in the morning and we couldn’t really see the English coastline, but it all changed in the afternoon when the sun came out, as did the tourists, including ourselves, for a final sunbathing session and a dip in the ocean for Adonis.

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A cloudy Wissant first thing in the morning
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A cargo ship on the horizon
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Impressive sand dunes

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Curious patterns on the sand formed by the wind.

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Large beach perfect for kite flying and kite surfing

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Feeling as high as a kite!
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Nice beach huts too
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Nicer and brighter in the afternoon sun!

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The only thing that spoilt our visit to lovely Wissant slightly is that the aire itself seems to have been neglected since our last visit a couple of years ago, with overgrown bushes, messy water disposal area and the access to the town through the back of the aire has been blocked.  Did the Neighbours complain about too many motorhomes taking a short-cut through their street?  Is it under new management who’s not too fond of travellers? Nevertheless, this is a very attractive town to spend our last two days in France, and indeed in Europe, after our 13-month road trip and I am sure we will be coming back soon enough.

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Attractive and picturesque buildings in Wissant

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And a spooky house too, perfect for a ghost story!
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Someone’s taken a lot of pride in this allotment by the side of the road

 

This morning, we got up bright and early at 6.30 and were boarding the Eurotunnel by 8 a.m., making it indeed the end of the road.  For now!

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Our last selfie of the road trip on Wissant beach
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Approaching the boarding platform at Eurotunnel
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And in we go. Under the see and into the UK. The inside of the Eurotunnel train

 


12 thoughts on “The End of the Road

  1. It has been a thrilling super trip for you and your family and i am sure you will treasure it for the rest of your life. I like to thank you for allowing me to follow you and for the nice comments on my pages. I too looking forward for you to come back and perhaps next time, the Morbihan Breton ::) Cheers and happy motoring!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. It has been so much fun being “with you” on this journey! I have loved all your stops along the way. I hope Beano does not get too restless now that he won’t be in a new place every few days. I also hope you will continue to blog about your days. Congratulations on a wonderful sabbatical!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Alison. Luckily, we will be staying right in the heart of the beautiful South Downs, a national park in the south of England, surrounded by stunning scenery and miles and miles of countryside, so Beano will be very happy indeed, as will we. As for the blog, I intend to keep it going and I will try and find interesting topics and places to share. Hope you are keeping well. Big hug. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I hear the reluctance in your voice as you come to journey’s end. One journey ends, but another begins, so give yourselves time to adjust. The photos are great. One of the tree walk reminded me of a similar trek me made through the trees in British Columbia’s Capilano State Park. Bravo to both of you for completing this awesome adventure! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for your encouraging words, Marian. We knew the trip wouldn’t last forever; the uncertainty was always where we would end up and, to begin with, England wasn’t it, but a toss between France and Spain as we both have family in those 2 countries. England is best and easiest for Peter to resume work and we do live in a beautiful and privilege part of the world, but I fear the dark winters again. We will continue travelling during the school holidays, of course! As for the tree top walk, my son has invited me to join his Scouts group on a ‘Go Ape’ day out! I have already accepted. 👍

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I can’t believe the year has flown by so quickly! I know you two will miss the time you spent on the road together, but you’ll also appreciate the modern conveniences you’re returning to. 🙂

    Like

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