Reunions home and away

Wednesday we got busy with domestic duties and getting all the laundry done.   Thursday we had a lazy start and then I headed off to Finley’s third birthday party – was lovely to see Rachel and the kids again.  The Nanny Jan welcome was amazing!

Finley and Kiera

Friday we collected mum and spent the afternoon tidying up the outside space ready for the BBQ we’d planned for Sunday.    The evening was lovely and hot so we enjoyed sitting in the garden with a few cold ones.

Saturday was hectic with mum and I shopping for food followed by Richard who headed out for drinks and ice.    Phew job done and we had an Indian curry delivered – was absolutely lovely!  

Sunday morning we were up early and prepared the food and, by 1 pm, I was able to take a rest waiting for the first guests to arrive at 2pm.  

Waiting for the guests to arrive

Sadly the weather was a bit mixed but thankfully it didn’t rain hard….    We had a lovely time catching up with everyone and I think they enjoyed themselves as there was very little food left over and they didn’t leave until late in the evening LOL.


Monday it was time to clear up and take mum home.   Then it was back home to pack for our trip to France….and at three am on Tuesday morning we were up and getting ready to drive to the airport. We got to Stansted Airport on time and dropped our checked luggage off before heading through security.   All pretty chaotic but actually was quite speedy so we enjoyed a coffee / pastry breakfast before boarding.  We took off slightly late and, pretty soon, we were over France and on terra firma just after nine o’clock.  Not the best airline – we’ll never complain about American Airlines again LOL.

We were met by Carolyn and Ron who took us to the lovely town of Eymet – we went for a wander around and a reunion cold beer – enjoying the lovely square and sitting out in the sun.

Eymet 1 Eymet 2 Eymet 3 Eymet 4 Eymet 5 Eymet 6 Eymet 7 Eymet 8 Eymet 9

We then headed off to the beautiful villa they had rented for a few weeks to celebrate Ron’s 70th birthday.    As we arrived we were met by their two Scottish Border Terriers Jamie (10) and Rufus (5) who were very excited to see us too…..   

Villa 4 Villa 1 Villa 3 Jamie Rufus

We enjoyed the rest of the afternoon by the pool, doing a bit of bobbing, and catching up over a lovely BBQ dinner.

First afternoon Pool bobbing Chef Ron

Wednesday morning and we headed out to Chateau des Vigiers – which is a beautiful old building sitting on a golf course surrounded by stunning gardens.  

Chateau Chateau 2 Chateau 3 Chateau 4 Chateau 5

We had a lovely lunch at the Brasserie in the grounds and wandered around admiring the modern art before heading back to the villa.  This area is stunning with endless fields of vines stretching as far as the eye can see.

Wine country

BrasserieLunch at the Brasserie Golf course art Golf course art 2

We then had a lovely afternoon and evening bobbing in the pool, playing with the crocodile and enjoyed the spacious outside dining area.  

Pool bobbing 2 Pool toys Pool bobbing 3

Jamie was guarding the villa and Rufus was constantly asking when he could get in the pool with us – when we kept saying no he decided to commandeer one of the sunbeds as his own and kept an eye on us from this position throughout the evening LOL.  Anyone would think it was his birthday – well, actually, it was the day after!

Guarding the house Time for a swim Rufus watching from his sun bed

Thursday Richard and I stayed by the pool snoozing while Carolyn and Ron headed off to the airport to collect Gary and Pam.   They arrived and we spent the rest of the afternoon enjoying the water, catching up, and another celebration BBQ with a few glasses of lovely local wine.   It ended up quite the party night….


Friday we all headed off to explore Saint Emillion….and enjoyed wandering around the town….this is an amazing place with fantastic views surrounded by vineyards and old chateaus.    The dogs were with us and they behaved amazingly well – particularly as it was so hot.   

Saint Emillion 1 Saint Emillion 2 Saint Emillion 3 Saint Emillion 4 Saint Emillion 7 Saint Emilloin 5 Saint Emillion 8 Saint Emillion 9 Saint Emillion 10 Saint Emillion 11 Saint Emillion 12 Saint Emillion 13

We decided to have some lunch and the waiter made a great fuss of the dogs giving them premier cru water under the table LOL.   All too soon it was time to head back to the villa where we had a lazy afternoon.

Lunch in Saint Emillion

In the evening we headed back to Eymet for dinner in the square after an extremely speedy taxi trip through the country lanes.    It was lovely and was the perfect way for us to celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary!   Hard to believe it’s been that long….

Back to Eymet Dinner in Eymet

Saturday is market day so we started off at St Foy la Grande and wandered around the stalls – largely clothing and artisan goods – although we did find the oysters and loved the umbrella shades over the street.   The boys (as in the dogs) were getting a lot of admiring looks as we wandered around the small streets.   St Foy

St Foy 2 St Foy 3

Having had our fill of this market we moved on to the town of Bergerac – which straddles the Dordogne River – and we found quite a few statues of Savinien de Cryano de Bergerac.   He was a French novelist, playwright, epistolarian and a duelist and his work was part of the libertine literature of the first half of the seventeenth century.  The town are clearly proud of their famous descendant.  

Bergerac Bergerac 2 Bergerac 3 Bergerac 4 Bergerac 5 Bergerac 6 Bergerac 7 Bergerac 8

After a lovely lunch (sadly with poor service) we headed back to the villa leaving Gary and Pam there who wanted to do more shopping….   We had another late party evening outside – and couldn’t believe that it was our last night and the final opportunity to wish Ron a happy birthday…   He even had a special shirt for the occasion LOL.   

Time for dinner Birthday boy

Sunday morning and we headed off to Issigeac – this is another lovely little town and was absolutely packed – with most of the stalls being about food / wine / cheese and even some pygmy pigs!  

Issigeac Issigeac1 Issigeac 2 Issigeac 3 Issigeac 4 Issigeac 5 Issigeac 6 Issigeac 8 Issigeac 7

We found a quiet corner for a final cold one before heading to the airport.   By two o’clock we had said sad farewells and were waiting for our flight back to London.   We had had a brilliant time in France – thank you both so much for inviting us.

We arrived back in the UK to quite a chilly grey day and had a decent drive home before having an early night.

This morning – Monday – and Richard was up early as he started work today to top up the sailing kitty.  So I’m back to domestic duties……and plan to do another blog to reflect on this season’s experiences before I sign off.   So please come back soon.

Bye for now