20120628 – Last Days in France

Thursday – too hot and sunny.

Camp siteWell it looks like we both provided a feast to some starving mosquitos yesterday. One day later we can see how many bites. That’ll teach us to go walking by the river on a humid day without the benefits of Deet or having had marmite butties the previous day.

It’s so hot it makes you appreciate why shaded pitches are so popular over here. We’ve just booked for August 18th next year but are now wondering whether we’ll cope. Unlike Arizona it can be a very humid heat – very debilitating.

Spend the morning doing the nerdy things. Crack off my first Ajax and PHP web pages. Really excited, sad but who cares.

In the afternoon I escort Wendy to her weekly highlight at the InterMarche. Achieve my mission objective (2 dozen bottles of wine) within 5 minutes so for being such a good boy I disappear to the cafe for a coffee and some iPad time. Wendy’s no doubt mightily relieved as she doesn’t have to drag a bored complaining husband around.

In the evening we go round to Dot and Barry’s patio for drinks. Two bottles of wine and 4 hours later it still in the mid twenty’s as we stagger back for bread and cheese.

Snazzy games title introduced:

The Stressful Life of Salman Rushdie and Implementation of his Verdict is the title of the game being developed by the Islamic Association of Students, a government-sponsored organisation which announced this week it had completed initial phases of production.

News of the computer game came as Tehran played host to the country’s second International Computer Games Expo. Press TV, Iran’s English language propaganda channel said (maybe alluding to the Salman Rushdie fatwa game):

The organisers considered the event as an opportunity to introduce Iranian culture, value and Islamic identity to international computer games designers and producers.

Little has been revealed about the game but its title suggests players will be asked to implement Khomeini’s call for the killing of Rushdie.

Car for saleHmm Iranian culture, that sounds interesting, perhaps they’ll do one called “Stoned” where you’ll get the virtual chance to stone someone to death or “chopper” where you get the chance to do virtual amputations or flogging – all in the name of the religion of peace.

Friday – warm, sun and cloud.

At last my claims that coffee is good for you have been vindicated. Recent studies show that;

Coffee found to boost muscles in the elderly helping them maintain their strength and reduce their chances of falling and injuring themselves.

Two cups of coffee a day can reduce the risk of heart failure and

Consuming caffeine has also been linked to improved thinking processes and improved memory skills in later life.

It looks like us silver surfers need to get knocking back the coffees – get the Blue Sumatra out. Now we need more research on red wine and German lagers.

Thouars churchThankfully it’s a bit cooler so we manage to clean half of the caravan. My view is we should leave the other half to next year.

Saturday – warm, sun and cloud with an odd sprinkle.

Manage to clean the other half of the caravan while it’s not too hot.

Now you’re probably all aware by now of the new edict in France that means you have to carry an unused breathalyser in the car. Comes into effect 1st July. Of course you expect that this would be a merchandising gold mine and you wouldn’t be able to get into a SuperMarche or Pharmacy without falling over massive display stands flogging them at exorbitant prices. Wrong. You can’t seem to get them anywhere. But then again this is France. My conclusion is this. Firstly they’re not enterprising. Secondly, and probably more significantly, they know that no self respecting Frenchman is going to bother, it’s just another rule / law to be ignored, it doesn’t really apply to them.

Thouars artworkApparently eating a handful of pistachio nuts a day can help reduce the damage done to the body by acute stress, scientists say. The nuts help lower blood pressure and heart rate in difficult situations. Just what we need to cope with this stressful life. Wendy’s OK with this but she wants them ready shelled. I can understand wanting Trout ready filleted, but come on shelling some nuts is not that difficult – even I can manage it.

Why will I never go to Saudi Arabia:

A Saudi man has been beheaded on charges of supposed sorcery and witchcraft, the state news agency SPA says. The execution took place in the southern Najran province..

The victim, Muree bin Ali bin Issa al-Asiri, was found in possession of books and talismans. He had also admitted adultery with two women, it said. Asiri was beheaded after his sentence was upheld by the country’s highest courts.

Human rights groups have repeatedly condemned executions for witchcraft in Saudi Arabia.

Amnesty International says the country does not formally classify sorcery as a capital offence.

Museum of Resistance & LiberteIs this really the 21st Century?

Sunday – warm and sunny.

Lazy day. Well it is the sabbath!

Cycle into town for some croissants from the bakery. I think they must be giving it away judging by the length of the queue.

Drinks on our patio with Barry and Dot – after 17:00 of course. Try some wine tasting as obviously one bottle will not suffice.

Monday – cloudy but warm.

Clean the car in the morning and take some photos whilst it’s immaculate ready for selling in AutoTrader.

Drive up to Thouars to visit the World War 2 Resistance Museum (Resistance & Liberte).

Receptionist at the museum is classic all that bad about this country. There’s only us there. She asks”just a Arrogant French twatmoment” and then proceeds to do her filing – it’s a wonder it wasn’t her nails – and complete some paperwork. After a few minutes of this charade I’m ready to blast her and vote with my feet. She finally deigns to serve us. Offer her a credit card. Complete look of incredulity – I explain to Wendy she’s obviously never seen one of these before. Where do they get these people from. No concept of customer service. A brown envelope and swift kick up the arse as she’s booted out the door is the best solution. Picture on right is symbolic of all that is bad about France

Museums quite interesting with English audio guide. Thoaurs was the centre for resistance in WW2 and the RAF dropped supplies to the resistance movement. Of course that explains why the large roundabout which has loads of National flags up, including the German flag, does not have a Union Jack or Stars and Stripes! Personally I’ve no problem with the German flag, I’d rather be in Germany any day than with these snail munchers, but I find the lack of a union jack just bloody typical. Why did all those British and Americans give their lives freeing this country from the Jackboot? Why didn’t they just land in Belgium; free the rest of Europe and bypass France.  “A lovely country spoilt by the French”. Such a pity the other countries in Europe aren’t nearer with better weather then we could give these a miss.

Thouars another churchThouars is a horrible town. Full of run down empty shops, even worse than Blackburn or Warrington – now thats as bad as it gets. If you don’t trip up over the mountains of chewing gum on the pavement  you tread into the valleys of dog muck everywhere.

Wendy’s obviously been quietly studying wines and how they are categorised. We’re talking about one I want to try again. “oh I know it’s in a tall bottle”!

Lets celebrate the Hadron collider has finally found the Higgs Boson – the God Particle.

Evening on Barry’s patio for drinks.

Tuesday – warm, sun and cloud.

Awning down and cleaned. Mats up and cleaned just in case it rains Thursday – female logic.

Apart from that a lazy day. Good news is it’s bread and cheese for dinner.


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