Summer holiday by car to the little Medieval village of Barjac near the Ardeche Gorge, returning via Paris. Lovely hot weather in the south of France with lots of swimming in rivers to keep us cool. A holiday enjoyed with a backdrop of the World Cup in Russia and the growing excitement in France as they eased their way to the final during our stay.
Glorious evening in Kent
A perfect little campsite in Kent with a carry-out bar supper, French wine to get us in the mood and Portugal Uruguay on the tablet on 4G!!
Scorching Arras for lunch
The solemn walk to Aubrey's cemetry
Planting a little plant in Watson's colours for Aubrey
James' Great Great Uncle Aubrey Wood Hawks, died, 1918, aged 22
Our second visit in a couple of years - Kim is quite taken by Aubrey's story - she's definitely a Ritchie now
Moeuvres - a tiny but to us, significant, village in northern France
James is tired after a long, hot day, starting in England and ending somewhere a little north of Dijon, via Moevres and a refreshing evening dip in the campsite pool
Hotel Dieu, Beaune
The beautiful little Medieval town of Barjac - our home for the week - this little restaurant a few paces from our house
What a setting to watch the World Cup - as Belgium score 3 in the last 11 minutes to beat Japan 3-2 - in Barjac
Kim treads carefully, high above the Ardeche River, to read a memorial stone to someone - did they jump? Or were they pushed?
James hits the rapids on the Ardeche
Messing in boats under the Pont D'Arc
Kim glides gracefully by...
A cooling swim in front of the Pont D'Arc
A fine shady spot for another swim and a picnic
Kim checks out the next door neighbours at dusk in Barjac
Lovely relaxed motoring in the depths of Provence
The enormous, beautifully restored Roman Théâtre Antique d'Orange
The little village of La Roque-sur-Ceze sits above the vines
Another river - another spot to swim - Les Cascades du Sautadet
Swimming at the Cascades du Sautadet
Kim powers upstream and does very well to make tiny progress, as James follows, beneath the surface, alongside
Heading home from swimming at Les Cascades
Got to get the trusty, old Sambas dry for tomorrow
Seeking shelter from the heat in his bedroom window
The huge Barjac weekly market - olives!
Enjoying the view of tomorrow's paddle from the Grotte de la Madeleine
Grotte de la Madeleine
Cooling off in a natural jacuzzi near the Pont d'Arc
Kim cools off in front of d'Arc
The musician is playing, the bunting is up, the telly is ready - Barjac, indeed the whole of France eagerly awaits the World Cup quarter final against Uruguay - they needn't have worried - it was a comfortable 2-0 win
Our fabulous little house in Barjac town centre, next to the Chateau
Evening on our balcony
Early morning start to the long paddle down the Ardeche river
Warming up and time to stop for a snack and a swim
Swimmykim does what swimmykims do
Ready for the off again... taking the tandem boat solo for a photo opportunity at the next rapid
Kim attacks another rapid
James makes it look easy..
Lunch stop - Kim relaxes and James keeps cool in the water, bobbing around with his life jacket still on for some reason?
Kim's fresh out of a cool shower as the sun sets on our wee balcony - it's just after 9pm and still 30 degrees - but the sun is about to set and is finally low enough for me to see the laptop screen and edit some more photos..
The Barjac baguette walk - logs
The Barjac baguette walk - the main steps
The Barjac baguette walk - colours of Barjac
Breakfast is coming home - lets hope that's all that is!!!
The Barjac baguette walk - the arch underneath our apartment
River Chassezac - the best swimming spot yet - Kim swims the elaborate network of deep channels between the flat topped rock with crystal clear water, currents that are impossible to swim against but great fun to swim with and millions of fish watching yo
James braces against the current before the inevitable downstream swim
Amazing formations - Kim dries off on top of our adopted rock!
Those smaller French portions sizes are starting to have an effect
A walk in the gardens of Versailles - and Kim finds a man carrying a baguette over his shoulder
Golden fountains in the Versailles gardens
On our way out, this was the queue to get in, and to get here, these people had already stood in a long queue for security
A sunny day in Paris
World cup semi-final day - the Champs Elysees awaits...
The Louvre - closed on Tuesdays!
The Pompidou Museum
A view of Paris from inside the Pompidou
The Pompidou Museum
Peaceful little camping spot for out last night in France, near Le Touquet - or so we thought until the English football neds returned having seen England lose to Croatia in the World Cup semi