I'm writing this while back in the UK for a short trip to see loved ones. This means travel has been much on my mind lately so I thought I should do a blog on ways to get to Pensol.
I flew back this time. It took 7 hours in total from standing by the river at Le Moulin to drinking tea in my parents house in Norwich. I thought this was pretty good - it often used to take longer than that to visit them in Surrey when the M25 was having one of its bad days.
Nik gave me a lift to Limoges Bellegarde airport. This is a pleasant 40 minute journey, and we are always happy to run our guests to and from the airport.
Bellegarde is a lovely airport with a great cafe and place where you can sit outside and wait for check in to start. It's on a hill so the view is good too.
We flew to Stansted but Ryanair also fly to Bristol and there are flights to various French regional airports. I was travelling with my daughter and two return tickets with priority boarding cost us 297 EUR or around £260. The French schools are on holiday but the UK schools have gone back, so I guess this ticket price is about mid-range.
I hired a tiny, pistachio-green Fiat Punto at Stansted, also via Ryanair. This was an incredible £8 per day. I dislike credit cards and have never had one, so they eyed my debit card with suspicion and made me take out the full insurance for £134. If you have a credit card you don't have to do this (but beware that the smallest scratch could cost you nearly £2,000 on the swingeing excess policy.) Dont forget to get a statement from the DVLA detailing the points on your licence. Easy to do online and anyway I'm sure you all have squeaky clean licences :-)
Climate change guilt is ever-present for me while flying. I gave a donation to a carbon offset charity while booking the tickets, and resolved to fast-track our solar investment prgramme when I get back to Pensol!
The train is a good alternative for those who don't or won't fly. London St Pancras by Eurostar to Lille. Then direct to Angouleme where we can come and pick you up.
Finally of course you can drive. When we moved here we used the channel tunnel as we had a car full of dogs who would not have appreciated the ferry. This leaves a longer drive on the French side but the Chunnel service is quick and easy to use with dog walking "parks" for a quick loo stop each side.
However you get here, as the song goes, just get here if you can. We're looking forward to seeing you this summer.