Monday June 26. We woke to a beautiful morning in La-Ferte-Sous-Jouarre. Cooler than last week which a relief. We spent Sunday on the boat, Alan trying to come up with a cunning plan to fix the dodgy radiator cap. Unfortunately things didn’t go well, something else broke, but luckily we had Alan and Di from ‘Arwen’ nearby who managed to jimmy something up. As you can tell I have an excellent handle on the situation. Our next plan was to head to Meaux, 40km away, where hopefully we could source a part.
We were off at 8am, breakfast on the move, the sun was shining, the sky blue with just a few wispy clouds. A perfect day for cruising.
At the first lock there was an eclusier who sadly took back the télécommande (remote control). I loved that thing. So easy to negotiate the locks. It not only actually worked, it played a tune! Excellent. I love France.
We are starting to see more boat traffic as we get closer to Paris. Everyone has commented on how quiet it is this year although there don’t appear to be any big hire boat companies along the Champagne route which explains a lot.
It was quite a long day, 5.5 hours and 42km. Alan topped up the water while we were in the locks and we made it to Meaux without any problems. The moorings are very nice finger pontoons with lots of flower boxes. €4.50 per day if they call to collect. We walked to the tourist office to pay and had a look around the cathedral (I forgot my camera so no pics).
We stayed in Meaux until Saturday July 1st. I managed to get a cold that triggered a Fibromyalgia flare-up so I laid low most of the time, hence the lack of Meaux pics. Alan took a bus to the War Museum and reported it was very good. The weather turned stormy and it rained on and off during the week. Alan went to the local chandlery and they managed to source a new radiator cap so fingers crossed that fixes the problem.
Saturday July 1 the weather forecast wasn’t good but we decided we needed to move on, even in the rain and cold. We radioed through to the first lock and were stunned when the eclusier replied she would set the lock up! New batteries in the hand held RT make a difference obviously. Who knew.
It rained continuously all morning, through three locks and a short tunnel. This is very good for the waterways as the water levels are getting low, after the unusually hot Spring weather. They will probably need a week of rain to make a huge difference but it all helps. For us it meant getting rather wet but you get that with boats. After 3 hours we made it to Lagny-sur-Marne, mooring in a real downpour. But nothing a hot shower and plate of pasta wouldn’t fix. Later on the weather cleared and we paid our mooring fees (€6 pn) at the tourist office after a walk around the town. I couldn’t drag Alan into the local church as there was a wedding on. There’s always tomorrow. I’m sure he can’t wait.
Sunday, July 1. I think Alan now has my cold. A trip to the superb Dimanche (Sunday) marché helped though. We were impressed with the quality and variety. The place was bustling which goes to show how good it is, especially since the day was grey and showery. We also found an excellent and very busy boulangerie. The shops here all look nice too. A very good spot.
By late afternoon the sun came out and so did all the locals, promenading along the river banks, children feeding the large swan population. We also have at least two coypu living along the bank of the river, near our boat.
That’s this week’s update. Tomorrow we head to Nogent-sur-Marne for one night and on Tuesday morning it’s along the Seine into Paris and the Arsenal marina! We have daughter Georgie flying in on Wednesday to visit so we’re very excited to show her our life here on the French waterways.
This week’s stats:
La-Ferté-Sous-Jouarre to Meaux, 5.2 engine hours, 42 kms, 2 locks
Meaux to Lagny-sur-Marne, 2.9 engine hours, 18 kms, 2 locks plus one 700m tunnel
Total after week 7
Engine hours: 85.1