Tuesday, August 18th
A sunny day!! We found the thruway and were heading to the next truck stop to fill up. At the garage they filled the tank about a ¼ full and advised us to fill up ASAP.
A little tid-bit that Bill learned the night before was that in this little corner of the world diesel fuel is called gazolina!!
Where is the book that all this information is lurking??
Anyway with great trepidation Bill filled the tank and we were on our way, everything was A-OK.
With time to kill, I read the Bordeaux chapter in the France, Lonely Planet book.
Instead of heading to the big city of Bordeaux we decided to head instead to the medieval town of St. Emilion, which was surrounded by vineyards and worth a visit.
Bill plugged in the coordinates to the campground in the area and away we went.
Three hundred km down the road “Richard” had us turning off the thruway to head to the campground. Each turn brought a narrower road to navigate. At first we weren’t concerned because we had been on the road less traveled before.
BUT as we drove farther into this thick forest, up hills and down without a cow in sight we became suspicious, especially when “Richard” said, “within 200m you will have reached your destination”. Nope, there was not a pitch in sight. Now we had the challenge of turning around. It turned out to be impossible because the back bumper got a little smashed up when it dipped into the ditch on the other side of the road. (I certainly hope there is something left of this camper to return!)
So one of two things had happened; either Bill had plugged in to TOM TOM the wrong coordinates or more likely the coordinates were wrong.
In any case we plugged in the town’s name, and city center and headed out, through the country side roads.
We found ourselves almost on the roads less traveled but close. There were a few cars and farm equipment but not much else.
Before too long we were surrounded by vineyards. There were fields and fields of rows of vines laden with luscious bundles of purple grapes. We were driving on a network of narrow roads that wound in and out and around these fields.
A long dusty road led us to the medieval town of St. Emilion and we knew we had missed our campsite-again.
Fortunately, there was a small round-a-bout just before entering the town. The good thing about these little traffic circles is you can drive around and around them without causing any harm until you can make a decision. For us it took us twice around to finally see a yellow camping sign pointing back the way we had come. No wonder we missed it, there was no signage coming from that direction.
The girl at reception spoke English and informed us that there was only one spot left, but it was conveniently located near the facilities and restaurant. She warned us that it would be noisy that night because they had a magician’s show starting at 9 pm but there would be a couple of pitches available the next morning if we wished to move. She gave us pamphlets and booklets of the area to study, and booked us on the 10am van into town
Reservations for dinner were made for 6:30 pm. We spent the time before dinner reading all the material and pamphlets which were given to us when we checked in. As we ate dinner and enjoyed the local wine we were able to watch the magician set-up. Around 7 PM the activities director (quite a character) started a quiz with all those at the restaurant called,
“Name the Celebrity in the Photo”. He spoke about 4 languages and it was hilarious watching him giving clues to the participants. One of the pictures was Bridget Bardot as a child.
At 8 PM he called all the children to come out and they literally did; there had to be about 30 children appear between the ages of 2 and 8 who sang with accompanied gestures and clapping. This was quite enjoyable to watch.
We left our table just before nine as we didn’t want to get swamped by the magician’s audience arriving. Every one of all ages attended this performance. They had a great time from the sound of their laughter and the children’s excited voices. It lasted until 10:30pm, then we had to listen to the chatter of the people who were taking down the set. Finally around midnight it was quiet and we were able to fall asleep.