Friday 24th October
Last night was lovely and quiet but we soon found out why the road had been closed. It was being dug up and the road workers start work at 7am, why? It was pitch black but all their flashing lights showed up rather well. They and a machine for digging up the old tarmac with a conveyor out the front. A tipper truck was positioned under the conveyor and as the digger moved along he beeped the lorry to move forward and then beeped him again to stop. Beep, beep, beep for ages. French road workers are very similar to English road workers, two blokes working and ten watching them whilst leaning on brooms or shovels but without their arses hanging out their trousers.
After sorting ourselves out with coffee and breakfast we moved on to Dreux passing the large market in St Andre de l’Eure and wishing we’d actually got out and explored the town. Onto Dreux which our guide was suggesting was worth visiting for a couple of days. We ignored the 3.5 tonne signs and made our way to the city centre, there was sure to be spacious parking areas for us motor homes. Mais non, lets just say that Frnakie can breath in when he has to and he did a lot of breathing in.
This is one of the roads we navigated obviously coming towards the camera! Eventually we found a side street to park in and walked into town to explore.
Luckily we didn’t try and get down this one!
High on the top of an ancient hillside is the Saint Louis Royal Chapel which looked worth a look, it was very steep, we had to keep stopping for Lucy to get her breath back and we arrived 15 minutes before the lunch break was about to start. Why do they do that? Start very early, have an hour and half for lunch and then stay at work till late. What do they do in their lunch breaks other than eat, all the shops are shut.
This was as close as we got. A tribe of American tourists were just on their way out saying how lovely it was inside and we had a choice, hang around for an hour and a half or find something else to do. Our lunch break was getting close so we went back to the van to ponder our next move over another French lunch of crust, cheese and pate. The French are great at making good looking bread but haven’t got a clue about putting something nice inside the outer layer.
We moved on to our next aire which is at bottom left, number 3. I mentioned before that there are very few aires in this area, this morning we were at 42 which is 70 to 80 miles from Paris, we are looking forward to being further south.
Look at the aires here, the Loir and Loire valleys are piled high with aires.
We arrived in aire number 3, first map, at a town called Nogent le Roi. The aire is adjacent to a rugby training pitch and lots of children were being put through their paces, even young girls playing rugby with the boys. We took a walk into town, found a launderette, some bars which we didn’t visit, a chateau and the Mairies office.
The office of the Mairie.
Another half timbered building in the middle of town.
The aire was free and it had free water, free grey and black water disposal, free rubbish disposal and most importantly FREE ELECTRIC. We were headed towards Chartres which was 20 miles away and the next aire was another 25 miles beyond that so we thought about staying in Nogent le Roi for a couple of days but realising that we would arrive in Chartres on a Sunday and the Cathedral may be in use for more than sightseeing we changed the plan to:- get up early and put all our clothes in the launderette, go and visit the chateau, get our clothes back and head off to Chartres.
It turned out to be a very good plan.