A Short Trip to Normandy

imageLast week we had Matt and Barb to stay for the week. The weather was glorious with wall to wall sunshine. We didn’t go out all that much, it was so hot. Matt was using up the last of his hols before starting his new job at the Welcome Trust. We had a meal at the beer engine and a trip to Darts Farm for Matt but the rest of the time we just lazed around.

The weather stayed bright for our trip to Normandy, although it luckily was not as hot as it had been. We stayed at the old castle where we have stayed on two previous occaisions.

Thankfully the crossing was as calm as anything so I felt reasonably fresh, despite our early start from the Premier Inn, Poole, and up for some sight seeing. We went to St Vaast and found some nice little shops and also a fishmongers with an attached restaurant so we mentally made a date to return on Thursday lunchtime for me to have a seafood feast, before we had to take the boat home. After a couple of beers we set off to check into our rooms taking a few detours en route to check out other restaurants. We in fact decided to eat in both nights as the food is good there and it meant I could relax as I was the one doing all the driving.

We had been upgraded to a larger room which even had a spiral stairway! Sadly, Hyw didn’t sleep so well there but the room and bathroom were plenty big enough. After a trip to the local bar we ate in the castle hall and I had my first oysters of the holiday. Afterwards, we got talking to a German couple who worked for Volkswagon and who were touring the battlefields. They were very interesting and had lived in Mexico, Japan, Milton Keynes to name but a few of the countries they had been posted to. He had also worked for Nato so a very interesting guy.

The next day we went to Avranches via some pretty coastal towns. The elderly folk were all taking early morning dips in the sea. Sadly they weren’t celebrating at Avranches, twinned with Crediton, until the weekend but we had a pleasant lunch there and climbed to the top of the tower on the castle for a splendid view. On the way back we stopped off at the hypermarche to buy some wine and goodies. We had our usual drinks in the bar, enjoying the rest of the sunshine before we went for our dinner.

Our final day, a little overcast initially but that didn’t bother us as we were off to Valognes and a walk down memory lane. From there we visited some small beaches on the east coast before heading for our seafood lunch in St Vaast. It was every bit as good as I had hoped and i was able to compose my own seafood platter. The fair had arrived in town since we were last there and they were setting up all sorts of rides on the harbour edge, it must have been spectacular when it opened.

After lunch we visited Barfleur and then spent a couple of hours reading on the beach before heading off for the ferry port. It was only 23 kilometres so not far at all. Again it was calm, someone up there likes me! Sadly it was dark when we landed, despite Hyw’s assurances that it would still be light so I had to pick my way home quite carefully until I was on roads that I knew well. Eventually we got home about one ish, all in all, a good break.





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