Friday, 28 July 2017

Just discovered Izzywheels.  I particularly love this one.


Photobucket, who I have a paid account with and have used for years, now want $400 a year for me to link to photos from here.  That won't be happening.  I'm checking out alternatives but in the meantime apologise for the broken photos in older posts.

Thursday, 27 July 2017


I find camping holidays very relaxing.  The level of expectation, in all sorts of ways, is so much lower.  You're not expected to be glamorous, dress up or wear make up.  You're not required to be anywhere, at any time, for the most part.  You don't need to eat particular things at particular times.  As I say, it's relaxing.

French campsites, and I suspect others on the continent, are also fantastic for children.  So many activities available.  Plenty of other children around.  Safety and freedom.  Also, cheap wine. 

A glass of kir, nearly empty

The last few trips we have been at large sites with lots of activities.  The not-so-small boy enjoys water slides and swimming pools and can spend hours entertaining himself on them, so that is a priority.  As he gets bigger, things like zip wires and ropes courses appeal more and more.  

This year's trip to Les Ormes worked out really well.  We went with Al Fresco, because we could use Tesco Clubcard vouchers in part payment (we've previously booked with Siblu on the same basis).  As we booked late, we ended up with a 3 bedroom mobile home.  It had a deck with a canopy and plenty of space.  This year's example was a bit more dated, a bit more tatty, than previous examples, but very comfortable.  We didn't have a wheelchair accessible mobile home (I can manage the two or three steps into a standard one and can walk the short distances inside).  Wheelchair adapted accommodation is available from Al Fresco, Siblu and Eurocamp at other sites. 

The campsite facilities were great - two pool areas, both with a range of slides, shallow and deeper areas and loungers.  Inevitably there were not enough loungers, but we discovered that if we headed down about four o'clock, people were starting to leave.   Since it was very warm and I had an injured elbow, I had a brief swim to cool off them enjoyed reading in the sun while the boy swam.  

We also enjoyed the pizza place onsite, the market on Tuesday evening, the "Pink Cabana" which served crepes, waffles and ice cream.  
Pizza with smoked salmon

The boy went down to the play ground and football area in the evenings and made a few friends.  He had a number of goes on the zipwire (€6 for two goes) and the ropes courses (€13 for two goes). 

Boy in rope course/zip wire gear   
Boy in trees

Once again, despite my hopes, the kids' club provided by Al Fresco (with Eurocamp) didn't prove to be a success.  This year, the boy was the eldest in his age group and didn't particularly enjoy it.  I'm sure these are great if your kids do enjoy them and, now he's 12, I'm glad that the boy is old enough I get down time without them.  

We did a few side trips from Les Ormes, which I will hopefully get a chance to write about soon. 

Monday, 3 July 2017


We're on holiday in France again this year - our usual mix of a little travelling and a spell on a campsite.  This time we're at Les Ormes (aka Domaine des Ormes) on the border of Normandy and Brittany. We'll be spending the next nine nights here:

On the way here we spent a couple of nights in Swindon and then last night at a very basic Ibis on the outskirts of Caen (our ferry arrived at 21:30). On our way to the ferry we did very drive by visits to Avebury and Stonehenge.  I did stop to take a picture of this amazing pub. 

Today we did a slightly less drive by visit to Arromanches where we stopped to look at the Mulberry Harbour and saw the Arromanches 360 film which I thought was worth the €6 entry.  Even better, it was free for me due to the wheelchair.  

I used to have a picture of the two of us, taken at Arromanches 7 years ago, on this blog.  I did contemplate recreating it, but we escaped quickly ahead of four coach loads of English school kids.  

For the next few days, the plan is wine, swimming and packing the boy off to kids club. 

Meanwhile I was pleased to get this picture from my friend who is staying at my house looking after my cats. Dougie has been known to avoid cat sitters for entire holidays.  This time, he's shown up for dinner on day 2.