After Mary and Hywel left we headed for Montceau-les-Mines and had to run the gauntlet of the lifting bridges coming into town. Virtually have to be touching the first one for it to ‘see’ you and start the operation. By the time it did we had another boat behind us and one coming towards us so the road traffic had to wait ages while all the boats went through – don’t suppose we were very popular!
We moored at Montceau and took a few days out. Henk & Bernadette and their neighbours Annie & Tony were arriving at Lechatelet to stay at Cascarot whilst they winterised The Bernadette. Shame we couldn’t get the two boats to meet up this year but we were not going to miss a get together at Cascarot! Eli zabeth and David had obviously been busy – more improvements – and the place is becoming busier as word gets around. Elizabeth cooked up a storm on Thursday night and we all went to La Garaudiere the Friday to celebrate Tony’s birthday. Henk and Adrian went into competition over who would have, and finish, the biggest ‘jarret de porc’ (hock of porc). A very close run thing…..
Whilst Henk and Bernadette were slaving away at their winterising we went to Beaune with Annie and Tony and visited the Hotel-Dieu des Hospices de Beaune – founded in 1443 for the care of the poor-sick, it was used as a hospital until 1955. Externally the roof line is magnificent with turrets and burgundian tiles in intricate patterns. The grande salle is imposing, had beds lining both walls and was linked to the chapel. There was a strong belief that healing went hand in hand with religion and so the Hotels de Dieu incorporated chapels. And likewise the pharmacies are superb – the one at Beaune has an area for the manufacture of medicines and rows of bottles and urns which contained all kinds of weird and wonderful oils, unguents, elixirs and powders.
The polyptych of the Last Judgement is on display in a special room.
So all in all we had a super few days at Cascarot and it was great to see Henk, Bernadette, Annie and Tony again….. and, of course, Elizabeth and David!