Vacances en France 2014 – day 3

After our complete pig out last night we were woken early by street sweeping and preparation of the war memorial in the park opposite for today’s big fête in France commemorating the first world war. So breakfast and away it was.

Firstly through rolling green hills populated with hefty Charolais cattle and then the hills receded and we are in cereal growing country

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before we approached Clermont Ferrand and could see bigger hills in the distance.

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We carried on South over more and more hills climbing to over 1100 metres. At this height, obviously, my eyes began to bleed and Mrs Sixwheeler lost her mind; which was inconvenient as she was driving at the time.

To recover we drove to Saint Flour where we enjoyed a jolly good lunch, just to keep us going you understand!

This left us with just a short drive down to Marvejols, the ville royal of the Gévaudan. It dates back to the Middle Ages when it was a heavily fortified city. This is one of the city gateways

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which still has people living in it.

We wandered round the little streets of the old town

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but everything was closed for the holiday. However in the end we found the magnificent Jesuit church of Our Lady of the Prison, which we both liked

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and inside I came across an old friend

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St Roch who I last saw when I was walking a pilgrimage route last year and whose church I will be visiting in Montpellier this weekend.

We stopped for a beer and could see some very large birds of prey. Back quickly to the car for binoculars and what I saw was intriguing so into the car and a quick drive to be nearer them confirmed what I thought

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VULTURES! And at one point I counted twenty two of them, and right overhead. Tick!

After that back to our hotel, just by the abbatoir (out of use!) and the excellent view from our balcony.

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Tomorrow it’s onwards to Montpellier for the weekend and a rest from travel. Phew.

8 May 2014

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