It’s coming…

We are getting ever closer to our new van. It is supposedly 13 days away. I say “supposedly” because we have been here before and I shall not quickly forget the horrors of last year when Mr Snail had to stay near Paris for several nights after travelling up on the train at 6am and finding Heidi Hymer not yet CT’d or ready when he arrived on collection day.

At least Naintré is a bit closer to home.

The funds have been transferred for the balance of the payment. It hurt a bit, the Exchange Rate being what it is. A good job that we didn’t actually buy the more expensive van from Cognac.

Anyway, all that we have to do now is to sit and wait.

With under two weeks to go perhaps I should be doing more than just waiting. Perhaps I should be organising some packing? We have invested in some of those colourful plastic skips with handles. They are flexible and durable and we think/hope that they will be just the thing for organising the luggage space under the bed. I could at least be sorting items into the skips (we got all the colours so that we can identify what is where. Also, with great regret, I feel it may well be time to be laundering, ironing and filling packing cubes with clothing in readiness.

We want to go away with more or less immediate effect, in order to test all systems and fittings. We will most likely just pop out to one of the many nearby free Aires for our first trip but we have found a local English-style brewery that has an event on; with ale, bikers, music, and the fish and chip van in attendance. Motorhomes may stay overnight at no charge. It is most tempting but it happens the day after we are supposed to be collecting the van so would require a very fast turnaround. That and the fear of not getting the van on the 19th leads us towards not making a booking, alas. It is, however, exactly the kind of escapade that we hope the nippier new van will facilitate – and frequently. We believe that using the van conversion will change the way that we approach our motorhoming. More frequent but shorter trips would seem to be the way to go.

Lunch in Montmorillon this week leads us towards going there for the second stage of van-testing – for which we shall be needing a campsite and hook-up. The Municipal campsite is a very short stroll from Le Lucullus, where we lunched in the Bistro and now fancy dining in the restaurant. It feels like A Plan. That said, Airvault offers many temptations too (and better dog-walking.)

The Plan for a late Summer foray to Modena remains in place, so long as no problems emerge with the van before then.

Plans are also firming up on what to do this coming winter. Initially we were tending towards Sicily but are now thinking about returning to Portugal and Spain again (trying to do new places rather than just the ones that we know and love) and thinking hard about going on to Morocco. Mr Snail is conducting research.

The Cat Contingent may well screw any or all of this up. It remains to be seen how they manage to cohabit in the smaller space. We may be needing a House Sitter. A free (long) holiday in France, anybody?

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