To the end of the road……999 miles

The idea of blogging as I go has certainly not been a success! I’m writing now in late September having been back home in Liverpool since August 19th. So – I’m going to try and close this particular post with something of a very brief resume of the remainder of the trip. Since getting home, I’ve had 4 days in Naples and tomorrow I’m off to Santorini for a week. However, back to France.

After leaving the Dordogne and heading for Carcassonne in the spirit of 69, we stayed for three days by the lovely River Aveyron in the dept of Tarn et Garonne. Highlights of this area would be St Cirq La Popie, Puycelsi and St. Antonin. This was followed by one night in Castres where we had stayed in 1969 before heading over the Montagnes Noirs to Caracassonne the final destination of the 1969 trip. At Carcassonne, we met up with Geoff – Margaret’s husband – who was flying in to rendezvous with us at Carcassonne airport. It was rather magical to be driving through idyllic, rolling hills 10 miles from the airport and see Geoff’s plane coming into land. Nice symmetry after nearly 1000 miles travelling.

Much of the rest of his post will be photos but please stick with it. A highlight of week two was without doubt meeting up with my exchange student, Dominique who Margaret had not seen since 1969 and I had only ‘found’ in 2007. Dominique’s visit to Preston was probably the inspiration for our trip to the South of France 46 years ago. Argh !!!!!

However, the circle was complete with us meeting up again.

Some photos:

The River Averyon at St Antonin - Noble - Val
The River Averyon at St Antonin – Noble – Val
Margaret apparently 'laying down the law' :-) in Puycelci
Margaret apparently ‘laying down the law’ 🙂 in Puycelci
Albi cathedral. We were there in '69
Albi cathedral. We were there in ’69
Castres. I like Castres. Understated.
Castres. I like Castres. Understated.
Hurrah - we've made it! Caracassonne.
Hurrah – we’ve made it! Caracassonne.

Got to say, the 2015 trip was probably a lot more comfortable that the 1969 one in an Austin A40 and Preston Scout tent. Whatever, both were great and what a joy and privilege to have made both trips.

Well done Norman and Margaret!!!!  Please forgive that little bit of family backslapping.

Finally, thank you to Geoff, my brother in law who flew into Carcassonne to take this photo.

Margaret and Geoff. :-)
Margaret and Geoff.

Margaret and I arrived on July 13th. Really nice of the good people of Carcassonne to put on a spectacular firework display to welcome us.

July 13th - our arrival - Bastille Day
July 13th – our arrival – Bastille Day



Dominque and his wife Sylvette. Dominique I tracked down in Nimes in 2007, 38 years after he stayed with my family for 2 weeks in Preston on the Preston – Nimes  Twinning exchange. There was no escape for the man. I found him. It was great for us all to meet up.

Sylvette, Dominque, me, Margaret
Sylvette, Dominque, me, Margaret

Would you believe Dominique and I have the same ‘breed’ of Campervan. Come on – that’s pretty spooky/good/cool/ an example of synchronicity?


A bientot Dominique.