Tuesday, June 26, 2012

A Whizz Round The Dordogne

I mentioned that we had done a bit of travelling since we came back from England. Mr and Mrs Septimus came to visit. Instead of them flying into and out of our local airport at Carcassonne, at my suggestion they flew into Bergerac and out of Carcassonne.

Their arrival was in the morning so, Bergerac being 5 hours drive away from our home, Gay and I went to Bergerac the day before and spent the night there. These are some pictures of this beautiful city:

Having picked up our visitors at Bergerac airport the following morning we proceeded to Sarlat, which has a wonderful market on Saturday, the day we were there. I did not take any pictures of the market but one or two of the splendid buildings in the town.

The following morning we went to the wonderful Lascaux II, to see the extraordinary prehistoric cave paintings. Unfortunately, no photography is allowed. These caves and the paintings were discovered only in 1940, the year I was born. Before many more years passed, it was becoming very obvious that they were becoming damaged by the breath of visitors, so they were then closed to the public. It took 16 years to make an exact copy of the cave and exact copies of the paintings, but it was well worth the effort. You completely forget that you are in a copy. The paintings are stunning in their complexity, their use of perspective and colour and their size.

I have borrowed this picture from a website called Sacred Destinations.

The pictures are 17,000 years old.

We moved on to spend the night in Rocamadour, a spectacular place built up around a place of pilgrimage.

The next day we travelled home via St Cirq Lapopie, which we have been told many times is the most pretty village in France. I found it very disappointing and not living up to that description at all. I have seen many nicer places in France. I did not feel inspired to unholster my camera.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Nordic Walking

Today during my walk from Nebias to Puivert I used my Leki poles. I bought them for VBW but never actually used them because my hands were always full of cameras, dictation devices, satnav kit and what have you.

I believe they have several USPs. One is that they take some weight off your knees with each step, thus ensuring that the knees are more likely to be preserved for posterity. Another is that they clearly help you, when negotiating a steep hillside, to remain upright. The third is that they use your upper body and give some exercise to parts which walking would otherwise not reach.

I am certainly in need of exercise all over, having done little for the past three weeks except eat. The rot started when we made a one-week visit to England for various purposes, including a round of visitations to friends and relatives we do not normall see very often. Of course this was lovely, but the downside in such circumstances is that every visit seems to include a feast, either in-house or at hostelries and restaurants. At the same time, because of the driving involved, and the fact that our time is put at the disposal of others - that is why we are there, after all - little if any exercise is indulged in.

We have also done quite a lot of travelling and eating since we came back. Upon our return from England I had added 2 kilos in one week and the total is now an extra 3 kilos which I am porting around. So a return to exercise, which would have happened anyway, is being enhanced, especially as we have a weekend away coming up, to be followed not long afterwards by a visit to Paris and another week or more of eating out.
I certainly felt today, after using the poles, that I had had more of a workout than a walk out, so I shall persist with their use on some longer walks.

The paperback version of my book "Vic's Big Walk from SW France to NW England" is now available, although it has not yet appeared on Amazon (it will do so0. If you want to know how to get a copy direct from the publisher, e-mail me at:


Thursday, June 14, 2012

Two More Donations and Two More Books

The donations are still rolling in. Two this week, one from Tim Streb, the owner of the Paris apartment in which we shall be spending a week with our New Zealand friends in July, and the other from Alan Greenaway, in memory of his wife Marion, a victim of pancreatic cancer.

Because of changes on the JustGiving website, it seems I can no longer send direct messages of thanks, which is why I am doing so on my blog.

My walking lately has been in the home area round Puivert. Any photographs I have taken have been similar to those previously broadcast on the blog so I have not been boring anybody with them.

However, today I received the first two perfect paperback copies of my book "Vic's Big Walk from SW France to NW England", so I can not resist a photograph of those. I walked a long way for them.

The book will soon be available on Amazon. I will keep you posted.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Another Donation

So long after the event, and as if to remind us that my donation page for pancreatic cancer research is still open, comes the second donation in a week, via Justgiving.

This one comes with a message which reads "For your Gaile and for me in memory of Jimmy and Kitty, always remembered with love. Donation by Elaine Clements"

Another page of JustGiving tells me the donation is from Pamela Clements so I am slightly confused.

The way the JustGiving website is now set up, I can not see the email addresses of donors, so the only way I have of saying thankyou to Elaine or Pamela is via this blog. So, simply, thank you, the money will be immediately put to good use by Pancreatic Cancer UK.