Poppies in Picardy

I’m not sure if I mentioned yesterday; my initial view, that the poppies were past their best was wrong! In the wet lands around the Belgian border and all across Picardy (yesterday) they are blooming everywhere. Obviously, some of the wheat, oats and barley being grown in this region have grown higher than the weed, but almost everywhere else there are huge seas of red.

Gorgeous. 

Today, Monday, we set off in good weather. This got better and better as the day went on until mid afternoon, when it spoiled itself by raining heavily. However, our morning, lunch and early afternoon meanderings were blessed with good sunshine. We wound our way around the wet lands east and north east of Calais and around the canals which head for (from?) the St. Omar region. We’d done a bit of this last July with my brother Andrew, and Debbie but thought it would be nice to take another look. We also managed a sunny picnic by the Moulin, overlooking Watten.

The countryside around Nord Pas de Calais is varied to say the least. We drove to Watten via Wimereaux, Ambleteuse, Cap Gris Nez, Wissant, Guines, Ardres and Bourbourg – and the differences between the various farmlands is great. Different crops, different colours, different landscapes completely. After lunch we had a coffee in a bar and then drove back to Boulogne for a bit of hypermarket shopping.

Because there had been a smash on the motorway junction our road passed under we had to duck and weave to get back and the roads outside our hotel were gridlocked. We therefore dumped the car in a not too far away car park and walked to the bar where we usually have our morning coffee. Everyone was pissed!! The landlady was dancing on a table and they had loud music playing. They were worried that strangers were sitting there but soon came around and started chatting (!!) with us. Excellent.

We’re back to blighty tomorrow, but not home quite yet. We’re staying with Martin and Lin for a few days before I need to get back to a weekend of marking and a week full of work (mustn’t grumble!) 🙂

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