On Saturday, it was due to be very hot, and Mr FD didn’t really want to go cycling in predicted temperatures of 34° so we decided to head on into the mountains. It was also the day when the Fete Patronale was likely to be very noisy (just outside the house) and we didn’t really want to stay around. We chose le Chaine des Puys – the volcanic chain of mountains which make up part of the Massif Central. We were in charge of Marvin and Roxanne, the dogs belonging to friends of ours, and it would have been lovely to take them with us. Unfortunately Roxy has been diagnosed with a heart problem, and all walks are banned, and we felt it was unfair to take Marvin out for the afternoon and leave Roxy on her own. So we gave Roxy her medicine and headed towards Clermont, taking a picnic with us.
Here’s Mr FD contemplating lunch:
We had bread, cheese, sausage, chicken rillettes and crisps, followed by melon- and-peaches and palmier biscuits. Lots of elderflower cordial and water to drink.
After lunch we made our way to le Mont Dore where we had a choice of three activities: a walk up, up, up to Le Grand Cascade (estimated at about 2 hours), a trip up in the cable car to le Puy de Sancy, or a trip up the funicular. I’m afraid when I saw the fin-de-siecle funicular that won hands down. I think Mr FD was a bit disapppointed, but he hid it manfully.
and it still looks like this today – down to the little curtains!
When we got to the top we had a little wander in the woods and admired the view. We also watched the people who were trying their skill at acrobranching at Mont Dore Aventure
I have done this once, about 5 years ago, and while I enjoyed it (in a masochistic sort of way!), I don’t think it’s something I want to do again. I think my arthritic feet and poor grip would make it a tad too risky now!
We waited for the next funicular and went back down.
We thought about going up the cable car too, but it was too far to walk to the station, so instead we strolled back into town and had a very welcome drink in a bar. We bought some local cheese – Saint Nectaire, Bleu d’Auvergne, Salers, and some chevre for me – and then set off for home.
On the way we paused for more photos
Mr FD kept my ugly boots out of the photo, but could do nothing about the unflattering shorts, and sweaty, slicked-back hair!! Mind you, my hands-stuck-in-pockets stance doesn’t really help the whole ensemble! I should learn a more flattering pose for photos, I think.
When we got home we were staying at Alison and Gerome’s house overnight, because of the fair. So we ate the Italian vegetable bake I’d left in the slow cooker all day, and then had cheese and ice cream for pudding. When it was time for the fireworks Mr FD headed up to our house to try to comfort the cats (Pomme didn’t flinch, Bib was a bit unsure, and George & Millie went to hide in the cellar) while I stayed behind to look after Marvin and Roxy. Marvin was scared and required cuddling, but Roxy snored her way through it all!
Incriminating photo! Don’t tell Alison that Marvin was on the sofa!!
It was a lovely day – special as most often Mr FD spends his days off on the bike rather than with me.
And, by the way, Happy Birthday Mr FD!