We are moving north and, as we could not stay at Alouettes any longer because it was full, we set off for a site at Sainte Maure de Touraine just south of Tours. No major setbacks for over a week and we are starting to regain some confidence in caravanning.
200 metres and Terry noticed that the indicators were not working on the caravan. A quick check by the roadside showed that nothing was working on the caravan. We could find nothing wrong so pulled into a garage hoping they may be able to look at it. Unfortunately, they were closed until 2.00pm! It was 12.30pm, so we decided not to wait, which was good really, as we later remembered it was Sunday.
We drove in silence the 130 miles as we were both sick that something else had gone wrong. We were also worried about other drivers wondering why this caravan had suddenly stopped in the middle of the road when we were turning left! However, we arrived with no problems. Next day at Sainte Maure de Touraine, we tried the Peugeot agents, they could not look at it until next week. We tried the Citroen garage at
3.00pm. "The mechanic will come to your campsite at 4.00pm" and two of them did. In minutes they had diagnosed the problem as the electric socket on the car had disintegrated. It is not a standard French one of course and they would have to order one. 10.00am next day they were back with a new one and fitted in 30 minutes. However one side of the caravan was not working. The guy really knew what he was doing and eventually found two wires touching in a side light. We awaited the bill and we thought €200 would be reasonable. €71 was the price! We were so pleased we gave him €80! (not like us).
After our workmen had gone, we set off for Azay le Rideau and its famous chateau. The chateau is set in a really beautiful village and the setting was exquisite, however, inside was lacking in any furniture as the Franch and German castles seem to be. At €8.50 each it did not compare in value to the English country houses but still worth the visit.
It was a nice campsite but now we had to consider whether to go and see the Normandy
Beaches. We asked several people who said we should go but what can you see other than beaches? "Well there is a great museum". That and the distance made our mind up so we headed towards Amiens and the mid stop of Chartres.
Here again another nice municipal campsite heavily shaded by trees, which we were very thankful for as it was so hot. There is a 2 mile cycle track into the historical centre of Chartres, so off we rode. Following the track was confusing so we managed to cover 6 miles getting there! The centre is dominated by the towns magnificent cathedral. The stained glass windows were really splendid however the whole cathedral is in the midst of tasteful decoration and many parts were boarded up. Did we say tasteful? Well would their Henry IV, who was crowned there, approve of them painting false stone bricks with masonry paint? Chartres is well worth a visit.
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