Thursday, June 28, 2007

The wanderlust returns

If all goes according to plan, J and I expect to be on that balcony tomorrow afternoon or evening. It's at a hotel/restaurant about halfway along the world famous corniche sublime that runs along the southern lip of the Gorges du Verdon. For those not au fait with Provençal geography, I'm referring to Europe's very own Grand Canyon. It's not on the scale of Arizona's, of course, but is still hugely impressive, we're told.
We've been living in this part of the world for some 5 years now, and been visiting rather longer, but have somehow never got round to visiting this natural marvel. Tomorrow we set off in a small hired car, which is probably better for negotiating those switchback roads, given there's likely to be a succession of tourist coaches coming in the opposite direction.
The last few days have been spent surrounded by stacks of camping car magazines. We were 90% decided to splash out on a Ford Transit based profile, and were mentally imagining trips to the south of Spain, Norway's north Cape, Croatia, Sicily etc. But there's a formidable problem to overcome - garaging. There are virtually no garages available to rent in Antibes. Buying one would probably double the cost, it would have to be high (close on 3 metres), and most of the garages I see around Antibes have their access blocked by parked cars, which I suspect in most cases do not belong to the garage owner. Who needs all the hassle ?
Provisionally, we've decided to hire a camping car for a week or two, probably in the autumn, and go and explore somewhere new for us - probably Tuscany. That will give us an opportunity to experience the motorhome in practice - warts and all- and decide whether the benefits of occasional gypsy-like freedom outweigh the costs.
Expect a welter of holiday pix in the next post, with limestone scenery very much in evidence.

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