Friday 28th December
After my last blog I was anticipating the worst, and it did not disappoint. We drove through torrential rain and gale force winds for miles, and each time I got out to walk or water the dogs I nearly got blown away. So much so that I got quite a headache from the icy wind. I tried to sleep once or twice but either the motion of the car or my own sense of desperately needing sleep to get rid of the headache kept me awake.
Then at some stop just south of Le Mans I was trying to do my coat zip up in a roaring wind, it was pitch black and two dogs were pulling me in opposite directions. I yanked them back in frustration and tried again to do the zip up. After I had got back in the car and we had driven about 50 kilometers further south I realised I couldn’t find my glasses.
I had taken them off when trying to sleep and had pinioned them on my sweater, one arm inside and holding them to my chest. It was about eight at night, dark and wet and I decided they might still be in the car somewhere though we would have to wait until daylight to find them as the neatly stacked and sorted back of the car was a mess since the dogs had scampered over everything and there were coats and scarves and pillows and empty shopping bags all over the folded down seats of the Ford Galaxy. I just couldn’t face turning round at the next exit, about 40 further kilometers on, turning round and going back to the exit prior to what we thought might be the Aire we had stopped at. And the chances of finding the damn things in the dark and still unbroken seemed quite low; besides I had been assiduously avoiding having my eyes re-tested, as I knew they were deteriorating and I would need a new pair anyway, until the New Year.
I will buy a cheap pair of reading glasses and get my eyes re-tested when I return to London. In a funny way it is one less thing to worry about – where you have put your glasses. Also quite quixotically my headache soon disappeared altogether and it stopped raining and the wind dropped and I quite enjoyed the last 200 kilometres of the journey, especially as we skirted Bordeaux then headed for Marmande, Miramont and at last a signpost for Eymet. Sixteen hours in the car, over 600 miles in France. Was it worth it? See Tomorrow.