Sunday 28th December
We started out at 4.00 a.m. on the 27th. Very cold. Filled the Thermos flasks with hot water, plenty of sandwiches and a few goodies to eat. Got to the Channel Tunnel at twenty past five and on first train at ten past six. I dashed into the services for a croissant and a latte but the queue was too long and the staff too slow so I gave up. I might still have been waiting now. En France at 8.00 French time and away. Stopped at first French Aire for a small paper cup of dark sludge masquerading as Grand Café Au Lait and a croissant and a piece of custard flan. Delicious. We had a couple of sleeps and hit Paris at twelve, the traffic not bad – but we couldn’t see the Eiffell Tower because of the rain. The wind was pretty strong too and buffeted us whenever we stopped to let the dogs have a pee. South of the Loire and the clouds lifted and a couple of hours of Winter sunshine. The long drag down through Limoges to Brive. Left turn towards Perigeux and then down the twisty old road to Bergerac. No street lights, pouring rain again and we were blinded with oncoming traffic. Dark as pitch by now too, but we crossed the Dordogne and the old familiar run into Eymet. Our friends had put the Calor gas stove on and we arrived at nine. Unwashed, unshaved and tired. A quick walk round the town, beans on toast, an hour of pointless telly and bed. 666 miles but we made it.