Saturday, 22 March 2008


We are home. It was a very hectic trip to be sure. Our journey out was as smooth as it could have been. The taxi arrived on time,the train left spot on seven and the plane was in the air right on time. When we got to Basel the person that should have been there to meet us in Wendy's car was not there as she suffers from a very bad back and could not drive. So off to Europa car and hire a very nice brand new Renault Clio. We drove to where we were staying had a coffee then got back into the cars and drove back to the airport to return the car.

Then we set off to pick up the boys and take them out to supper. It is always great to see them and of course they love to see and hug their Mum. We went into Belfort to Quick and had hamburgers. I am always impressed by how clean it is. When you go into the McDonald's over Wandsworth Bridge the soles of your shoes stick to the floor !.

The next morning we started to sort through Wendy's things that were being stored in the garage of where we were staying. It was very hard for Wendy as she had already chosen things to keep when she left her flat, now she had to thin it down again. As what was left had to fit in the car, a Citroen C2 for the drive down to the Pyrenees. As with everything Wendy's resolve was amazing. A pile of things was made to go to charity, and another one for the dump. It was hard work. We went out to supper again with the boys, this time to a grill house by the cinema. I had a rather strange piece of chicken, we could not decide which part of the bird it came from. Then on Saturday we collected the boys after school and made our way to Colmar. We stopped at Auchan and got some things for a picnic and had one by the motorway in a very nice rest area.

In Colmar there was an Easter fair. It was amazing. Eggs everywhere and people dressed as chickens. The town of Colmar is quite a place, somewhere that you never tire of going. We had the boys over night and stayed in a very nice hotel that Wendy had got a great deal on by booking well in advance.

Sunday we headed back to Belfort as we going out to celebrate Fabien's eighth birthday. We went to the boy's favourite place Buffalo Grill, this is where all the waiters dress as cowboys and the food has a western theme. Then we went into the main shopping mall of Belfort to go bowling. It was so quiet it was like being in one of those movies where a bomb has gone off and you are the only living people left............ Wendy won the bowling.

The boys were dropped back and we went home exhausted. Monday saw us up and back in the garage fine tuning the boxes. We paid a visit to the dump which was again so tidy you feel guilty taking and leaving your rubbish there. Then on the way back to the house Wendy said "Why don't we leave for the south tonight,and stay over somewhere?"There was silence for a minute and then we both said "Yes, why not?" out loud. We got back and scuttled about and booked a room in a Formula 1 in Lyon for that night. We picked up the boys one last time and had supper. It is always a hard time as they know that their Mum is leaving again. It is torture for Wendy. Back at their house there were lots of cuddles and goodbyes. We headed back to collect our things and pack the car with heavy hearts. They are a wonderful pair of boys. The way that they treat me is a joy.

When we got back to where we were staying we loaded the car and I cleaned the windows for the trip. We said our goodbyes and before we knew it we were on the road to Lyon. It's about
350km and was quite a long drive at the end of the day. The lights of the hotel welcomed us at around 11.30pm. This was my first time at a budget chain - 31€ for a room that sleeps three. And I must say it was nice. There was no mini bar or trouser press but the room was clean and there was a plasma TV that had French tele. You share a loo and shower room.

Breakfast was fantastic - for 3.90€ you get fresh baguette, jams, Nutella, orange juice and all the coffee you can drink. We set off on the rest of our journey and decided to drive down via Montpellier and see if we still like the idea of moving there. As we got closer the temperature went right up. We stopped at the town of Pezenas, which we both like a lot and had a walk around and just knew that we have to live nearby so we can visit reguarly.

We left with smiles on our faces and headed towards the mountains where we were going to stay with Billy and Mrs F. The journey was long and the road tolls just kept coming. Finally we arrived at our destination and stopped to get some wine in the supermarket.

While we were at the checkout, Wendy noticed the man in front looking at us. As he was packing he looked at me and said "Alright?" I replied like someone in the Great Escape and said "English?" He confirmed that he was and we chatted. He had moved there six months ago and said that it was the best thing he had ever done and he'd never go back to England.

We got to Bill's around 5.45pm and found him playing with some sand in front of the house. He had had a delivery for some building work that he is having done. I will have a break here as this post seems to be like a book. I will conclude the story a little later, and add some the excitement mounts.

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