By | September 28, 2006

There was a sign for the Auberge du Mont and Chambres d’Hote. It was up a steep slope and when we got there the gite seemed locked up and the auberge was shut. There was a number to call for the restaurant, as we shuffled about looking for a phone the neighbourhood dogs were going nuts, so much so that the owner of the gite appeared on her balcony.

I said “escuse moi, c’est possible un chamre?” She went to get her husband, he didn’t speak English, but did speak French louder and more emphatically than his wife – he was a very English Frenchman. He offered us a double room with a shower in the corner – in a glass cubicle for easy viewing. I did my best to explain we were cousins, not lesbians, and he showed us a twin with a bathroom down the hall. It’s shabby-chic! Breakfast is included in the €60 room rate.

We got cleaned up and washed our clothes before locking our room and heading into town. We walked quite a way with no sign of the centre, when we did reach it there were three bars to choose from in the square. We by-passed the ‘last chance saloon’ looking place in favour of a smarter, but not smart one. We had Oranginas – they were gooood. The only food served was olives or crisps so we waddled to the third place which offered two menu choices, omelette or courgettes.

We went back to the last chance saloon which had lots of people in. We ordered beers. The people were workmen staying there. There was no sawdust on the floor, just spit and cigarette stubs. We went back to the courgette omelette place and asked for two beers and two ‘menus’. They were excited, we were the only people there and it looked like they were still building the side of the bar. We got our beers and an old guy with two walking sticks came in. He’d overtaken us earlier on our walk into town!

The bar owners wanted him to translate the menu for us, but as it was omelette, courgette, porc, poisson, fromage and dessert there wasn’t much point. The food was fabulous, home cooked and plenty of it. The wine was robust and fruity. The service was fantastic, friendly and enthusiastic.

We strolled back and both needed the loo, but when we got there the house was locked up. We tried the garage door, and I went around to the front and rang the bell. We made enough noise to wake the neighbourhood dogs, and I tried to look suspicious so that neighbours would come over. I lay on the floor and stuck my arm through the catflap to see if any keys were hanging inside, we picked up rocks looking for keys under them. The noise finally got to our hosts who appeared on the balcony.

After some debate about how we managed to leave the house, they let us in and I slept like a baby.

Lou pointed out I had a sunburn on my back from between my shorts and top – it’s a smile. I have another on my ankle where I stopped putting on sunscreen when the ice cream arrived – it’s my greed-burn.

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