Privas – Friday, 25th June 2010

Another day in Privas but had to take a trip to Valence about one hour away to obtain a replacement ‘hat’ for the water heater flue.  The flue is only in use when we use gas water or space heating but in the 3 years we have had the caravan we have always used the mains electric supply.  It seems silly not to use that it when its ‘free’but you never know when emergency may decree that we need it.

I think that it must have come off in our adventure through the underpass tunnels in Rouen on the way down and we only noticed it yesterday and thought we should get it replaced or rain can get down the flue pipe.

I don’t know how that came to be dislodged and no other damage was caused when there are other things on the roof like the roof light/vents and the TV aerial that are much higher.  It could have been a really disastrous start to our holiday.

The journey to Valence was about one hour and we should have arrived well before their lunch ‘hour’ from 12 until 2pm!  However we had a problem finding the place.  We had a map and postcode supplied by the people at the site here but French postcodes are very vague and cover many streets.  We located the road OK and the map showed a Castorama supermarket and it was not far from there and we searched all around.  We asked a couple of people but they had no idea where we were looking for, despite showing them the map.  We then decided to drive on up the road a way and called in an office to ask someone there.  They were able to help us but apparently the Castorama shown on the map was the ‘old’ one and we had found the new one. So with their help we found the place but we were 3 minutes too late. So we had time to kill which inevitably meant shopping!!  But we also bought some French bread and Roquefort cheeses so we could have a picnic before re-visiting the shop.

All was OK in the end, we got the part and returned to the caravan.  We opened all the windows and awning, but it was 31c today and so we decided to go to the pool for a while for a cooling swim after our trip. So then we closed everything again and spent an hour up at the pool.

After a while we came back and had a cup of tea and some French bread with strawberry jam.. very nice.. hmmm.

I am watching Brasil v Portugal as I type this and don’t plan to do too much more today, a quiet evening at home is planned.  Quiet that is except for the frogs or toads that seem to croak all day and night by the river adjacent to our van.  They are very loud and have a very deep ‘voice’ so I am guessing they are quite big too.  Might go on a hunt later when it cools down.