12 September 2015

France September - Deuxième Jour

We were up reasonably early to make sure that Reggie was watered both ends and had his breakfast. The special food he has from the vet to try and cure his bad belly is not to this liking. He eventually ate it at about 4pm.

The "plan", such as it was, was to head along the coast towards Veurne in Belgium before turning down to Armentières.

I set TomTom to avoid motorways and we set off along the back roads before joining the old N1, now designated D940,  near Fort Mardyke. Not all that scenic so far. Ignoring the instructions we headed into Dunkerque and parked near the old harbour. The three of us walked to a café for coffee, dogs allowed inside.

On the way we passed a succession of historic ships in the harbour.

Tug
The former light ship that guarded the sands in the channel.
Duchesse Anne
The "Duchesse Anne" is a German 3-masted sail-training ship and given to France after WW2 as reparations for war damage, and rescued and restored by the city of Dunkerque in 1980.

Princess Elizabeth
The paddle steamer "Princess Elizabeth" took part in the Dunkerque evacuation in 1940. 

The cafe was decked out with American flags as from time to time they have classic car events.

La Pataterie
It is also decorated with old photos of the town and people.

Wall decor
Wall decor
Once finished we walked back to the car after deciding to look for the beach where the 338000 troops had been taken off from. It is actually in the neighbouring coastal town of Malo les Bains.

Firstly we stopped at a bakery for lunch. Or rather picked up a baguette, pastry and drink to take with us.

Croq' Baguette
After a few missed turns we made it to the beach and the memorial to the French troops and their allies, that would be the British Expeditionary Force, that were evacuated.

The mémorial des Alliés

The mémorial des Alliés

The mémorial des Alliés

The mémorial des Alliés
The mémorial des Alliés

The beach itself is obviously a holiday beach and since June 2014 dogs are banned.

There are special fences erected to stop it blowing away.

Panorama of the beach
After lunch was eaten on a bench we had a walk along the promenade to the seaside town but. Very sad as September is obviously out of season!

The next part of the plan was to head for Armentières and the hotel there. The off-motorway route took us into Belgium and past Poperinge, so we took a turn into the town, down past Talbot House (http://www.talbothouse.be/en/museum/home) and into the square. 

With Reggie out of the car we headed across to the Hotel Amfora for coffee. Why? They had the best looking awning as it looked like rain was imminent.

It was. We had a second coffee.

Here we decided to change hotels. With rubbish weather we didn't want to be wandering about looking for a restaurant so cancelled Hotel Joly and booked another Campanile. This one near Dunkerque with attached restaurant.

The hotel is near a couple of lakes. Once we had checked in and had a rest, the weather brightened up and we went for a walk around them, hoping Reggie might go to the loo. He didn't.

The walk was a little over two miles. By the time we got back we hoped he'd eat his dinner. He didn't. 

We went to get our dinner whilst he stayed in the room watching a programme about Ferrari's on the TV. Anything to stop him barking and growling at anyone passing by the window.

Of course. Once we got back to the room he decided to eat then. Plans for a loo walk curtailed.

Tomorrow, we will drive down to Armentières and visit Charles and pay our respects.

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More old tech 2

Digital cameras.  I seem to have quite a few!!!