Wherever you travel in France the French traditionally plant trees around their town squares and their car parks, as you can imagine in the summer months parking spaces under trees come at a high premium and people fight to park in any shade that’s apparent.
This tradition also extends to campsites and aires and is especially welcomed by people staying in caravans and motorhomes or camping cars as they are known in French.
This summer we stayed on a variety of aires in towns, mountains, countryside and on the coast and most of the aires had good tree cover, in fact in many it was impossible to park up without being under a tree.
At first we too welcomed the opportunity to park in their shade to keep our motorhome Homer cool and then we could exercise the choice to sit and relax in the sunshine when we chose to.
However as the summer began to draw to a close, we began to experience a problem we hadn’t thought of.
It began in the Limoge region where our normally quiets nights were disturbed by the irregular plopping of acorns bouncing off the roof,sometimes in the early morning aided by the energetic grey squirrels that scurried around the trees. When in the Dordogne it changed to the slightly louder noise of horse chestnuts and then when we were on the Charente Maritime coast we experienced days of quite strong winds and we were on the receiving end of pine cones. One extremely windy night the roof was peppered by the fruit from large plane trees and an extraordinary amount of dead twigs.
When we drove up to Normandy and then on into Brittany there were fewer trees and this lead to undisturbed nights, until that is whilst on one aire adjoining the beach, seagulls decided to use us as a take off and landing pad.
Why didn’t we move Homer you may ask? Well on most sites there was no where to move to, and of course there is that smug and snug feeling that nothing can get you as you are curled up in your warm bed😊.