Having checked that all was well with Clara we decided to have a wander around Montreuil before leaving for our next destination, the Park Marquenterre.
We also came across a couple of rather nice cars...
After stopping in Carrefour Metro to top up on the beer supplies (it's Sunday and they won't be open in St Valery by the time we get there) we set sail for the Marquenterre via Maintenay, with its
lovely 12th Century Mill, and the Abbaye de Valloirs (which we know will be closed, but it's a lovely drive).
We love the Parc du Marquenterre - it's perhaps one of the best bird reserves in northern Europe - and we nearly always pay a visit when we are in the area. The first picture is of
a Whooper Swan - and I had to take a picture of Clara while we were there, of course!
After a lovely wander round we drove to St Valery sur Somme and found a parking space pretty much outside our hotel! This was great because it was free on Sunday and you
get 45 minutes free parking on weekdays, so as long as we leave by 9:45 on Monday morning we will have parked for free (and since it is now €25 per day in St Valery that's a bargain! Although you can pay by the hour or so as well.).
Leaving with a minute of two to spare we headed for Cayeux sur Mer and the nature reserve in the marshes just to the south of the town. The weather is not great but the trees are looking fantastic
all the same.
There was nothing much doing there but it is a beautiful spot even on a bleak November morning. We did see a Sparrowhawk and a Kestrel having a dispute over whose hunting
territory it was and quite a few Great Egrets so there was something interesting to see.
Time is ticking and it is getting towards time to leave... Heading back into St Valery we stopped at the supermarket to stock up on wine. Thirty litres of wine for ~€65: the same amount of
wine in Tesco in the UK would have been £145! A few beers may have found their way into the shopping basket too... At least Clara has a pretty decent sized boot - there would have been for the same
amount of shopping again if necessary!
As we had a little time in hand after doing the shopping we decided to take the interesting route rather than the autoroute so we headed for Rue, which is a delightful little town with some amazing buildings,
including a fabulous church.
Rue is also the home town of les frères Caudron - there is a museum there which we have yet to visit - and by a strange coincidence I would see one of their early aircraft in the RAF Museum at Hendon later that week!
From here it is a relatively short trip on the autoroute to the Channel Tunnel...
... and a not so short (or enjoyable) trip up the M20 and round the unlovely M25 to get home via the cattery.
At least with Clara safely back on the driveway I can open one of those beers that I bought...
Next - where are my clocks?