Our Twelfth Week Working In Camping Le Moulin In Chef-Boutonne

The sun was out and temperatures exceeded the 25 degrees mark for most of the week. We’re adapting to work in the heat and sticking to a new rhythm – we wake up earlier and have worked out a morning routine with Nigel. We alternate days to clean the toilets/showers block and put the “robot” in the pool (by 8.30am) and take it out by 10.30am. Mornings also include giving a good wipe on tables and chairs and sun loungers and sweeping around the restaurant/pool area.

Morning sunshine.

Step One: robot out! It's 8.15am and we're still a little tired!

Step Two: in the pool.

Step Three: Power On!
The sunshine brought many motorhomers and caravanners our way. Quite a few of them had booked in advance and most are staying for longer periods, even up to two weeks at a time. We’re enjoying talking to campers and getting to know them a little. And helping them out with any enquiries ranging from getting access to the internet to places to go and information about the area. Richard and Jacqui, caravanners from the region of the Poitou-Charentes, even got us some rice cakes; Paul let Jamie have a go on his practice guitar – a nice break from cutting the grass near his caravan.

We've been spotting deers in the field behind the campsite.

The sun was really out! I'd put sun cream everywhere including the back of my neck, but forgotten that my T-Shirt had holes in!
A few mobile home owners and Stuart have needed some “French assistance”. Larry and Ann needed help when the garage owners they’d managed to speak to on the phone came on site to open their locked Honda. Yes, they’d left their keys inside. Fortunately, their daughter sent them their car’s spare set of keys they’d left in the UK. A couple of days and a phone call later, Larry and Ann were able to use their car again. Warwick, Rachel and Malcom’s Yorkshire Terrier needed to be booked for a dog grooming session in Melle. Letters needed to be tweaked around and forms filled in for Stuart and Willy and Gill. We may start putting a sign up outside our van; “French Assist”!

Jamie could have his own sign too. “Tech Assist” would be his. This week saw him installing and fixing the big tv screen, sky box and cable connections to get Camping Le Moulin ready for the Euro 2016. Many of you will know by then that this year’s European football competition is taking place in France. After France’s nearly missed win on Friday night against Romania, the campsite’s Restaurant des Canards was busy for England’s first match in the competition against Russia. Although Jamie and I helped out in the kitchen the whole evening, we joined in the atmosphere and sat down with a chilled drink afterwards. As some of you will know, it was a tense match finished by a 1-1 draw. Many, including us, were disappointed on the night, and more so these last few days with all the media reports of violence from Russian fans targeting English supporters. Let’s hope things are going to quieten down, but most importantly that England make it through the next round.

A few tensed faces at the back including Willy sat next to me, come on England!
On a more joyful front, more friends came down to visit us this week! Nick and Adriana were on their way back home after spending two weeks touring the South West of France. We enjoyed a nice BBQ, sat outside until late we downed a few drinks and talked about their trip discovering places of natural beauty such as The Camargues and staying at France Passion’s alternative places rather than the usual aires or municipal campsites. It was a lovely evening and were sad to wave them off the next day. Especially since we knew they were our last visitors for a while... Or so we thought.

With Nick and Adriana.
My uncle and auntie, Jacquot (short for Jacques-Hubert) and Catherine paid us an unexpected flying visit yesterday. Newly grandparents, they’d spent a week with Sixtine, their four weeks old grand-daughter and her proud parents; Timothée, their son and Chloé, their daughter-in-law. Now on their way back home in Northern France, they thought they’d do a brief stop to see us and stretch their legs for half an hour. We spoke quickly over a nice cup of tea, looked at- and took many pictures as if we had to cram as much as we could in the short amount of time we had together!

A fleeting visit, my uncle and auntie, Jacquot and Catherine.
We finished the week (yesterday, Tuesday) to the Routiers restaurant "Le Cerizat" a few kilometres away from the campsite in Chail. Pat and Roger, Willy and Gill and Nick and Cath treated us to a great meal and evening. We feel very spoilt and lucky to be on a campsite with such lovely people. Clouds and rain are back by the way. Since last Saturday, showers have been on us on and off. It is meant to last until the end of the week. Let’s hope it doesn’t deter anybody visiting the campsite.

With Willy and Gill, Nick and Cath, Roger and Pat at the Routier!