Got up at 7am. Quickly packed stuff because bloke was mowing park. Got refund on bottles, bought and scoffed crisps and walked 6km to Allex. Rested there writing notes and drawing maps. Walked 10km to Crest.
Got information from police station and syndicat d’initiative. Camped, ate and met British family on holiday. Went for a 5km walk around Crest, met up with one of the Brits and his French friends and chatted at a bar. He is an ex-scout. I met the boules champion of France and then we moved onto another bar. Back at midnight.
On this day:
Another quiet news day. Here are some of the notable events of 1984…
- Torvill & Dean win ice skating gold at the Winter Olympics
- The Dr Who baton passes from Peter Davison to Colin Baker
- TV debuts for Thomas the Tank Engine, The Bill and Crimewatch
In the morning I opened the tent door to find that a man on a large sit-on mower had covered the entire park in an ever decreasing circle almost up to our tent! I’m sure he would have stopped before mowing us down but to be sure we unpitched and moved aside so that he could complete his work. Lessons learned from camping in a public park…
This was our final day of walking. Lord knows how many packets of crisps I got through – they were superior to those at home.
It seems odd to walk into the police station at Crest and ask for information for our project but that’s what we did. People were just so accepting and helpful. We would have been urgently attempting to get the project work completed.
Crest is a reasonable sized town and the hilltop castle can be seen from miles around. The tower you can actually see is just the castle keep as the surrounding castle walls and buildings were destroyed on the orders of Louis XIII. Ownership passed into the hands of the town 4 years after our visit and the tower is now open to tourists.
As far as I can remember we didn’t touch a beer until this final night in Crest. I probably set out to explore on my own and just got chatting. When I was introduced to the French boules champion I was naturally sceptical but days later I saw a poster in Grenoble of a man holding boules that looked the guy so I guess it was true.
In retrospect this was the pinnacle of independence for me – a 15 year old in a bar in south France chatting to French people late into the evening. All because I went to explore the town. There’s much that has changed about me in the last 30 years but the seeds of exploration, the need to be curious, turn one more corner and ask one more question were evident way back then. The proper word is “nosy”.
In the absence of our original maps I have deduced the following route…
Distance walked: 10.6 miles (17.0 km)
|Photo 1||Street view of Photo 1 – Livron Park|
|Photo 2||Street view of Photo 2 – Tour de Crest|