Before I went to sleep last night, I finished two daily drawings and spun a first lot of fluff to finish Gill and Jeremy’s shawl. I haven’t got a book or a kindle (forgot I was going to take Steve’s kobo as it’s lighter than my kindle fire). Refuse to read a book on a laptop or a phone – I like to curl up with a book, not develop a squint. So having to produce alternatives to reading is productive – and so is staring off into space – I’m good at that too.
I am enjoying the scenery: French houses are often shuttered and the architecture is distinctive. Towns seem to have painted all their lamp-posts and doors in matching colours – I saw a burgundy and a blue town today. And there continue to be what’s left of windmills lining the coast – stumpy toadstools with no working apparatus. Shame really, as you’d think it ideal countryside for generating wind-power. I could see Mont St Michel in the distance but never made it any closer as I turned inland. Another trip in the future perhaps?
OOPs raining again. Honestly, it seems to come out of nowhere!
There were a few more hills to traverse, but, with the help of the Tourist Info map, I finally got away from the main roads (with their lorries and tractors thundering down on me) and into the back lanes – indeed, one was just a dirt track and I worried I was going to end up at a farm and have to turn around. But the map was good. Keep going! Or I shall be late for my host – again.
France has no (or few) proper hedges. It’s mostly flat and open with electric fences with signs saying “Chasse Gardée”, or grassy banks with trees growing sporadically on the top. Otherwise it started to look quite English – with primroses, violets growing and bluebells just beginning to show. There are also lots of merlins hovering in the air.
I went past a dam – the Barrage De Viseris which there is some local protest about – so I guess the government is planning to demolish (Save our lake!). This was up a very, very steep hill.
I got into Saint Hilaire-du-Harcouet at 7.30pm – cumulative miles 169 (bearing in mind I’d forgotten to replace the little computer at one stage – for about half a mile). I went into Chez Philippe (wifi ici!) for a much appreciated beer (Heineken stuff – not ale) and to check out Morgane’s address – turned out to be just around the corner.
Morgane lived in a compact apartment overlooking the church – beautiful vista.
She had cooked me spinach and fromage de chevre quiche and apple crumble for pud – yum! Morgane (Hebi is a nickname) is a librarian in town, thought the situation for libraries in France as it is in England – closing or limiting opening hours, left, right and centre and who needs librarians? I mean they don’t DO much, do they? (Just in case someone doesn't realise - there was just a hint of sarcasm there). Like in England, they are diversifying and being run by volunteers more and more.
Morgane is a fan of Studio Gibli and Manga – she has a HUGE collection of Manga fiction and Totoro lurked in the most unlikely places. She was also very tidy and organised (well everyone IS when compared to me). She soon whisked my wet tent out of its bag and onto airers draped around the flat. She is very kind and generous and looked after me impeccably. Most of the couch surfers she has hosted are Dutch and Greek and come in the summer, so I am an early bird. The sofa bed was very comfy – the central heating, hot. I also got to see those French window shutters close up – Morgane had a handle she turned to lower the external shutters over the window – she left them open a crack to stop me from being too claustrophobic.
Next morning and all packed and ready to go to Maylin’s in Couesmes-Vaucé – and Morgane walked to work about 08.50hrs. Thanks for the hospitality Morgane :-)