Tues 31 May - Cool morning, Vanumbra, camper shop, GAN, Rob&Cherie's
The morning was cooler than expected, but it made a pleasant change. John and Irene and ourselves got down to discussing the reason why we had come down to Moissac earlier than expected. So let me tell you the backstory. Several years ago, John and Irene bought a campervan from the owners of Piper Barge Drumsara, and started going to Spain during winter. At the time, I said to them that if they ever upgraded to a newer van, they should give us first right of refusal on buying their older van. And then I promptly forgot all about it. Well, about four weeks ago (in the middle of the Australian election when Scott Morrison looked like he might have a chance of re-election), Irene contacted me and said that they were thinking of upgrading, and was I still interested in buying their old van? Rita and I put our heads together, and thought that if Morrison was re-elected, there was no way we'd want to live in Australia for another 3 years of that chaos, by which time the place would be a shambles. Much better to spend those three years in a campervan touring France and other parts of Europe! So we decided to go ahead and say "yes", especially given the price that they were asking (29,000euro, when a similar van in Australia would cost at least $100,000). But John and Irene are heading back to England soon for family matters and then off to Canada to see some of their kids. So we had to move fast, but not too fast since we had to wait for money to appear in our Credit Agricole account, and that would not be until tomorrow. So here we are at their place, discussing campervans and waiting for our end-of-May bank statement tomorrow.
John and Irene had called their van Flo (as in Go with the Flo), and kept asking what we would call her after she was ours. We have thought about that a bit, and it was not until I started writing this page for the blog that I decided on the name Vanumbra, because we couldn't call our tree farm, and our barge and our campervan Kanumbra! But we won't be re-painting her green and gold like the barge!
So today we went down to a Camper Store (Motorhomes, or Campervans are often called Camping Cars in France) to look for some items that John and Irene are taking with them into their new van, and that we would need to replace. They then took us to meet their insurance agent at GAN Insurance in Castelsarrasin, who they swear by. After meeting him and talking for a little while, we quickly saw why they liked him and his staff so much, and we had soon signed a contract with him to insure the van (for about the same as we pay for insurance for the Scenic).
We then came back to Moissac for some celebrtory drinks at the Sunbeam Cafe, and then wandered over to Rob & Cherie Mitchell's house to see if they were home. They had bought a little house between the canal and the river a few years ago (pre-Covid), and had got Nico and Iain and Kaz Noble to do some renovations. Rob and Cherie were not home, but we at least got the chance to check out some of Nico's handiwork, very similar to the style he employed at our house in Moissac.