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    • Day 6

      Day 06 - Duras

      April 20, 2022 in France ⋅ 🌧 10 °C

      A well deserved lay in this morning, before we set off for the Hollywood’s last house tour of the holiday.
      At 1230pm we set off from Roque heading north on the D15 and then north west on the D656 to Bruch. We then headed west on the D119 D642 and D108 before joining the main A62 through to Samazan. We then headed north on the D933 and D813 before finally joining the D708 through to Duras.
      Stopping for a short while at Duras directly next to the Chateau we grabbed food (probably the best burger in the world) and coffee, as for once we were actually ahead of time.
      We set off for the last ten minute drive to meet James the agent at the address in Villeneuve de Duras. On arrival we met James who had only just arrived himself, before being shown inside. The property was two houses combined into one, and were believed to be amongst the oldest in the village, if not the oldest.
      The house needed quite a bit of work, but the scenes from the rear garden were stunning.
      After roughly an hour we parted with James and headed to the nearby ‘Huge’ Leclerc store. We spent decidedly more time in Leclerc than I personally would have preferred, but everyone else seemed to be enjoying a little retail therapy. Replenished with food, drink and 1970’s aftershave for Paul, we left and took the reciprocal route to our journey this morning arriving back at Roque at about 7.00pm.
      A very chilled evening followed, supplemented with our now staple diet of bread, cheese’s, chorizo and quiche. We even extended to a salad tonight 🥴
      We sat chatting until late, knowing we actually had no plans for tomorrow and another lay-in was on offer.
      Tomorrow is a blank canvas!!
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    • Day 5

      Day 05 Long And Winding Road

      April 19, 2022 in France ⋅ ☁️ 13 °C

      Well today was always going to be a long day. We had set up some house viewings for the Hollywoods and also sneaked in a return to our favourite property.
      So up at 6am and out the door at 7am much to the dis-pleasure of Munch . . . Off we went.
      Heading initially north east on the N62 to Agen and then north on the N1021. We then travelled north west on the N21 through to Bergerac. Stopping briefly at a hypermarché to grab a croissant and a coffee we then continued north once more on the N21 through to the lovely Périgueux with it stunning cathedral perched on the raised skyline. Straight through Périgueux we continued north - to and through Thiviers still on the N21 until reaching Chalus, we now being in the Haute Vienne region. We met Willem our estate agent outside the post office at just gone 11am as agreed and then followed him to the 1st property for Mr & Mrs H. The first property was a maybe a little on the small side, typical French hamlet build.
      After about 45 minutes we said our good byes to Willem and continued north west on the D901 to and through Étagnac onto the D948 still heading north west. Travelling through Confolens and finally onto Pressac via the D148. We then branched onto the D741 through to Saint-Martin-l’Ars and then west on the D28 to and through Joussé. We then pulled in to visit our favourite property - our second visit now, to see if we still felt the same as we did on our first. Arriving we met Paul (Jasper Carrot) at 2pm - who had kindly already opened up everything for us and left us to explore once again. We showed Munch and the Hollywoods everything the property had to offer, and the numerous bits that needed fixing.
      It was soon time to move on and so said our goodbyes to Jasper before heading off.
      We drove south west to Savigné on the D36 to meet with Kate at 3.30pm who was to show us the next two properties for Mr & Mrs H.
      The first was again in a quiet hamlet, this one with a stunning garden and pool. The inside of the property needed work in some areas, but nothing that was non achievable. Definitely one for further consideration.
      We departed after a good wander around and headed to the final property of the day. This had been suggested to us by Kate last minute and so was a blind viewing.
      On arrival the property immediately showed it size and options, with a new extension/conversion aspect on the end. Within everything that had been renovated had been done to a high standard, but had at some point just had the works stop . . . and so lots still to do. A very clean, spacious and new build blank canvas.
      We said our goodbyes to Kate and started the long haul home.
      We hit the D1 and D8 respectively south west to Condac and then out the other side to pick up the N10 south. We continued south through Tourriers and then south east all the way down to the outskirts of Bordeaux. Then heading south east we drove the A62 through to Damazan stopping once to grab a bowl of pasta and a drink in some services.
      At Damazan we hopped onto the D108 and subsequently the D119 through to Bruch. Continuing south east on the D287 and finally the D15 we finally arrived back at Roqué at 10.30pm.
      Over a very quick beer we figured we had achieved a rough 500km journey for the day before falling into our beds.
      Oh and it rained on the way home - a lot !!
      A lot to think about tonight with the properties still on our minds.
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    • Day 7

      Day 07 - Relax, Dont Do It

      April 21, 2022 in France ⋅ 🌧 11 °C

      Lazy days and Sundays! Well this morning was a lazy day despite it being a Thursday. Late getting up and time spent chatting over breakfast and numerous cups of tea and coffee passed a couple of hours.
      Teresa and the Hollywoods decided they fancied a walk, they plumped for a waddle to Laplume which is the nearest village to Roque. Having a rough idea how far it was I was ok with the walk there, but didn’t fancy the walk back afterwards. So I kindly offered to pass on the walk and take the car to Laplume in order to drive them home.
      Plan hatched and agreed the foot soldiers departed just after lunch. I followed about twenty minutes later, with some chores to do at the supermarché and the bank and a planned wait at the cafe.
      I passed the trio on the main road to Laplume, they having made more ground than I had thought they would. I gave them a friendly yell from the window as I passed and continued to Laplume. As I rounded the bend I saw and remembered the road ahead which stretch in a straight line as far as you could see. After giggling to myself I had a little sing to myself of a certain Talking Heads track . . . We’re on the road to nowhere, come on inside . . .
      After a whizz around the supermarché, and unsuccessful stop at the bank ATM I went to secure a seat at a cafe.
      Laplume is not the most busiest of towns on a good day, but early afternoon on a Thursday is particularly bad. Not a thing was open.
      I re-sited to the supermarché car park and sat waiting for the trio who to be fair were quickly trotting through the car park towards me.
      My three flagging passengers were pleased to see me and be driven to Lamontjoie, the next village south from Laplume.
      We quickly found a cafe which to Mr Hollywood’s amusement, had a name and beer brand that were able to play Double Entendre . . . ‘Coq Hardi’ and ‘La Table De La Bastide’.
      The cafe was not at all as we had expected, being very smart and upmarket - almost a fine dining experience with classical piano music. The food looked particularly good and would be well worth another visit on another day.
      On returning to Roque, the sun had made an appearance and so we fired up the BBQ again and spent the afternoon eating and drinking in the warmth of the day.
      We were visited briefly by Monique and Michel together with their grand-daughter, on their arrival home from a few days away.
      The evening continued very much the same before we retired, slightly sad that tomorrow was our last full day.
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    • Day 8

      Day 08 - The End Is Upon Us

      April 22, 2022 in France ⋅ ☁️ 14 °C

      Well - last full day today, the week has flown by.
      Started the morning with brekkie and a natter about the week, what to do today and times for tomorrows departure from Roqué and flights etc etc.
      At midday we loaded into the car for one last drive out having decided to re visit Nérac for the afternoon.
      Heading out west on our well trodden and beloved D15 and then onwards westbound on the D656 we pulled into Nérac. We managed to park in our now usual spot and then wandered the streets for a few hours, stopping occasionally for drinks (combined with people watching) ice creams and retail therapy for Teresa Munch and Mary.
      We wandered down through the old town and took time out to visit and enter the church - Église Saint-Nicolas de Nérac, built i. 1749 and which is stunning inside. We were the only visitors when we entered - only the silence seemed loud.
      We continued down to the river - the Petite Baise, before making our way back to the car.
      We drove the return route back to Roqué via Laplume for some last night essentials - milk!!
      Another evening was spent sitting in the late sunshine, over eating and drinking the last of the wine reserves.
      Late coffees and that was it - time to hit the pillows so we are up bright and breezy tomorrow to pack and vacate by 10am.
      Footnote: Teresa decided she had important news to impart to me at 3am - I love waking that early for news. So much so I then don’t sleep for the remainder of the evening . . . So much for a good nights sleep 😵‍💫
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