So Thursday morning has arrived and after a tremendous downpour all night we woke to blue skies and a much fresher feel. Such a shame we need to move, but move on we must.
Now dear reader we have had a problem with our electronic emobilser contol for the whole of this trip. It started as we tried to disembark the ferry in Saint Malo. On turning the key the engine starts to turn over but doesn’t ever do the final turn and fire up – if you know what I mean. The boat crew are waving us forward as we are at the front so no one can disembark. Try again – nothing. Try the old take the key out, put back in method – nothing. More frantic waving from the crew. Andy notices there is a yellow light now lit on the dashboard. It seems unusual. Not somthing we have noticed before. Closer inspection reveals its a padlock. Umm. At this time we had no idea what it meant. After several attempts, taking the key out and trying again – Bingo, the padlock stays off and we finally got the engine to fire up. Much to the crews delight and all other vehicles on board. Sorry Condor- technical issue, you know how it is.
Parked up just round the corner from the port, all those nights ago, we get out the manual and discover what the light means. It is to prevent anyone who hasn’t got the correct key from starting the engine. It also mentions this can happen if the key has had a sudden knock – not aware of this happening since boarding the boat. There is also a guide on how to fix the issue, we have tried it numerous times but it hasn’t worked for us. We rescue the spare key from its hiding place in case we need to use that one.
Since then everytime we need to start the engine we have had to play key shuffle and try several times. We have googled the issue but not found anything about the intermittent issue we are experiencing. The only thing we are beginning to think is that the engine battery is just slightly low, not enough to stop it starting but just enough to upset the electronic emobiliser, as once we have been driving for a bit it starts fine first time with no yellow padlock light staying on, but if we stop the engine after just 5 mins we have the issue again. So in the mornings when we need to make use of the emptying and filling facilities we have had to leave the engine running.
Anyway, back to today, and Bella starts after two attempts and we settle our bill.
The road follows the Loire for a few miles before cutting across passing fields of corn that have been flattened by the heavy rain last night. The journey is only two hours and no toll roads today. We pass our first fields of sunflowers this trip, normally the country side is ablaze in yellow during our holiday.
Driving up to one village Andy points out the crooked spire in the distance, being very knowledgeable as he is he calls it a spiral spire and sure enough as we pass it you could see the spiral design.
By lunch time having stopped at a Super U to just get a few small bits for the next couple of days, we pull into the Aire in Changė. We last visited here Easter 2017. It is only a gravel area but with the canal on oneside and a large boating/leisure lake the other it is quite pleasurable. The town is five minutes walk over the bridge and yes they have a nice restaurant. Finally we can easily have a meal out.
After our usual G&T it was time for showers and to dress up a little.
The meal was lovely, I had lobster with a pea puree, sounds weird but was so good, to start and Andy had prawn and strips of sundried tomatoe risotto, I had cod for main and Andy lamb. We both indulged and had a dessert (sorbet-ah) but it was included in the price. Feeling very full we stroll back for a coffee and a couple of rounds of Rummekub before bed.