en Route a’ Sancerre

There’s not a right lot can happen on that day of your holiday which has been planned to be the day you spend driving. Sure enough, we set off from our hotel just outside Lyon and drove to Sancerre without too much incident.

‘Geoffrey’ got us around Lyon and on the right motorway, heading for Macon, where we turned off to cross-country and head up into Burgundy. The most exciting bit of this part of the trip was our first use of Telepeage. Sharon had bought the kit last year and this was the first time we’d had chance to try it out. It’s absolutely brilliant! When you reach a French motorway ‘toll’ (peage) booth, the queue for Telepeage is always the shortest and quickest and so it was. Simply drive up to the barrier, it recognises you and up the barrier goes. No credit card, cash or non-English speaking chaps or chapettes to deal with. In years gone by I’ve queued for hours (actually and on aggregate) at the peage near Villfranche – it’s a real bottleneck (bouchon) there (and next Saturday, Fete National will be one of the worst days!)From Macon it was pretty much just us and the odd Frenchman out for a Satuday drive. Blissfully empty roads with no stress at all until we hit Sancerre, which I’m sure, can be more easily approached, but Geoffrey decided we could climb the steep hill via the narrowest of winding roads – Grrr. Still, what a pretty town! We’ve not seen much of it just yet; but it is very old, has very narrow streets, lots of bars and restaurants – and importantly, Boulangeries.

We have just written to Avis, our car rental folks, to tell them that they have provided us with none of the essential emergency kit in the Citreon C4 they have loaned us. These are demanded by French law! We are now driving illegally!!!

Anyway, we’re here now and it looks delightful. Our apartment is very French, with magnificent views across the valley. The town is slightly above us and we will go and explore that shortly. But for now, it’s just good to be here.

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