Day 43-45: France, Vias

Day 43

Nirvana has appeared in front of us. In this sleepy little shutdown seaside village! We were cycling passed a row of tightly closed up restaurants when we spotted a couple of 50 gallon drums cut in half on the floor and surrounded by dried olive wood. Signals that this was to be a pretty epic braai. Mmmmm wonder what the massive rotisseries are for? We were just ready to start charades and a long line of questioning when a young and very well-spoken waitress appeared with her perfect English. Yes, it was a braai and it was going to be 2 suckling pigs. OMG. Our rule, when suckling pig EVER appears on the scene, we stop with immediate effect. Turns out that the locals had snaffled all the tickets but she suggested we come along at 8pm that night anyway and see if they had any cancellations.

Back to Kaya for an afternoon walk along the beach squeezed in just before the gorgeous Mr T’s afternoon snooze. And also, of course, to prepare ourselves for the suckling pig meal …..but not before checking out ready to leave.

The gorgeous one was just securing the bicycles onto the rear carrier when we met Keith from Lucille’s Adventure Before Dementia. His wife, Nicky, was currently back home on a family trip leaving Keith on his own. After a few cups of tea and coffee, Keith was keen to join us for the suckling pig so off we all trottered (see what I did there!!!!).

Turns out they had enough. Phew! And then it was back to ours for brandy and coffee to settle the meal.

Reason to travel # 46

Day 44

We rose quite early this morning and went for a long walk down the beach towards Agde, ambling along holding hands, enjoying the quiet and taking photos of the night and dawn skies (it was very early!).

Reason to travel # 47 (I’ve started to lose count!)

At this stage we had been looking for some seafood in the next village, Vias, but with the poissonerie shut down for the season, the cupboards were indeed bare. What we wouldn’t do for some!

“Well,” says Keith, “go to the Intermarche”.

None in Vias…….oh yes there is!!!

So with instructions duly embedded, we were off on a mission, promising Keith that if he was correct, he was invited for a free fish supper.

And angels played harps and trumpets sounded as the Intermarche (not on Google because I checked!!!) appeared in the distance. Seafood counter raided of a grey mullet. Not normally to people’s taste as it’s considered a bottom feeder but in the Med a very popular fish to eat. We’re in the Med, ergo we eat it.

And the accompanying angels started to sing as the village market, filled with all manner of wonderful things, appeared when we popped into the village “just to see what shops might still be open”.

Paella for lunch

Village markets (unexpected or otherwise) – reason to travel # 48

It’s been a pretty warm day so before supper prep starts, we decide to brave the cool Mediterranean waters and have a swim. Fuck me!!!! It’s ice-cream headache cold but once you’re in and numb, it’s fine. Honestly! We manage to stay in for about 30minutes before we’re in dire need of a warm shower to get the feeling back into our extremities

Swimming in the Med . Reason to travel # 49.

So back to Kaya to prepare our mid-afternoon (pre-mozzie) feast. A starter of griddled aubergines with mint & garlic on batard toasted over the fire followed by braaied grey mullet stuffed with fennel & lemon served with fried potatoes, fennel & orange salad & tzatziki. Turns out that although Keith doesn’t like aubergines, fennel or mullet that they can be made to taste fairly good. Ooops, rookie mistake not asking guests what they don’t or can’t eat. Ah, well, next time. For us, bloomin’ delicious!

We still remained friends!!! and drank a little more after-dinner whiskeys than we were supposed to.

Reason to travel # 50

Day 45 Sun

Oh, lawdy. Is that a storm or my head thumping from a bit of last night’s over-indulgence? Nope, that’s a hooley of a storm. Another one. What a difference a day makes!

Kaya is rocking on her shoes as we peep outside and the calm, tranquil, peaceful and sunny days prior have disappeared, and the wrath of Thor is upon us….again!! It looks like the Med is now the Atlantic as grey-green, angry, lashing waves crash and surge into the rocks about 5 metres from us, stretching it’s fingers to try and get us. All the beach has disappeared and it’s just a teeny bit scary.

Ah, I have a day off today….well, sort of. Keith has promised to make a curry for early supper and I’m making some fresh bread rolls so we can have bunny chows. In return I’m also doing a no-knead bread masterclass with Keith to show him that there’s no secret or witchcraft to making bread – that it’s actually a doddle.

Reason to travel # 51

A lovely warming chicken curry bunny chow later (thanks, Keith, it was fab!) and a lesson for Keith in how to make pizza dough, naan and rolls done, we sit down to while away the rest of the evening crossing over a myriad of subjects. Laughing, swapping stories, chatting, laughing a bit more, not a drop of alcohol in sight but glugging with tea and coffee.

Reason to travel # 52

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