Join us on our travels around Europe aboard our Dutch Tjalk Francoise

  • Jill Budd

    After 6 years aboard our Narrowboat Matilda Rose in the UK, we took the plunge and shipped her across to Europe. After 2 years in Europe we knew we didn't want to return to the UK so took the plunge and purchased a 1902 20 mtr Dutch Tjalk called Francoise and are now continuing our travels of the waterways of Europe in a buxom wench

  • May 2016
    M T W T F S S
  • Meta

Beffes, La Chapelle Montlinard, Charite sur Loire (11/05–16/05)

Posted by contentedsouls on 22/05/2016

5 locks, 17km + 1 bike ride

Over these 6 days we have had the most dismal weather, some of it really cold and most of it wet; if it wasn’t actually raining we seemed to be in cloud. G’s work on the outside of Francoise has been mostly thwarted although it did stay dry enough for just long enough to repaint an unsightly patch of damaged paint above the waterline. We also had just enough sunshine to sit out on the back deck with a drink and our French neighbours before a storm broke – in consequence I have now added the French for ‘storm’, ‘thunder’ and ‘lightening’ to my struggling memory banks and, for reasons I can no longer remember, ‘halfway’. I have, subsequently, had plenty of opportunity to use the first three of my newly learnt words. We also met Guy and Ruth Toye and their son Raymond who are Brits who have lived in France for 40 years – Guy is the Vice Chairmen of the DBA and owns a tjalk moored at Chapelle Montlinard which still has it’s original mast and leeboards.

Very little of consequence to report; I continue to explore as much as I can and we continue to watch the swallows dipping and diving (especially now the Mayflies are hatching) with the bats taking over after dusk. So just a picture gallery really to allow me to catch up a bit.

We passed through the pretty port of Marseilles les Aubigny


and continued on to Beffes where the small supermarche closed for lunch from 12.30 until 4pm! Beffes suited us for a couple of nights as we were able to turn Francoise and get access to the other side – all our moorings for sometime seem to have been portside to bank. It didn’t particularly suit Muttley though as, everytime we went out we had to run the gambit of the local geese – not to mention goose poo! Daisy, also wasn’t very happy as she had to stay in for two nights and managed to get herself shut down in the engine ‘ole. We thought this poor little fledgling was a gonner to the cold, but it did live to fight another day. The Mayfly spent it’s entire life with us.


En route to la Chapelle we started to see working boats again and it was a bit disconcerting when I spotted this one coming around the bend as we’re no longer used to them – there was plenty of room though.


The mooring at la Chapelle was typical of the old silo moorings; not the most scenic but quiet and safe for the menagerie and the closest point to the bridge crossing of the Loire into the town of La Charite-sur-Loire which I wanted to visit on Saturday morning; market day.


We left on the bikes in cloud and were staggered at the speed and power of the Loire since we’d last clapped eyes on it.


I liked La Charite, a UNESCO world heritage sight, and we bought what we needed at the market, had a look round and enjoyed a beer and a waffle in a companiable, albeit steamy, little bar before cycling back.


G spotted these unlikely looking companions way up on the balcony enjoying a bit of time out


6 Responses to “Beffes, La Chapelle Montlinard, Charite sur Loire (11/05–16/05)”

  1. kwade said

    Just like Herbie & Daisy

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Kevin TOO said

    It looks to me like the Loire at La Charite-sur-Loire could well become
    the replacement for the recently closed log-flume ride at Alton Towers… 🙂

    So how long was it before you realised that Daisy got into the engine ‘ole??

    Liked by 1 person

    • The Loire is reflecting our crazy weather – it’s not just the heavy rain and storms – occasionally we’re in shorts, but often thermals.

      We think she must have been down there a few hours – as we knew she was onboard no-one had been to check on her. She must have gone to sleep and then woken up hungry. I turned the radio off and heard muffled meaows – another phone call to pet helpline!!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. andywindy said

    I can imagine it was quite a surprise seeing that Peniche coming round the bend, though of course you are in a bigger boat now, just look at your picture when about to pass said Mazzel! Imagine how low down you were in MR in comparison.

    Thanks again for the photos, I do like the Mayfly, or should I say did, it’ll be dead by now!

    La Charite looks really special, I like the houses let into the wall, so obviously adapted and altered many times in their lives.

    And a bookshop, a real bookshop! often thought of as a dying breed, but on their way back along with vinyl record shops.. Who knows that’s an idea to open a combined outlet, Records and books! Of course you’d have to have those little booths with headphones in to listen in so you didn’t disturb the book readers. What turns around comes around! (Showing my age again!.)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ah, never mind the height, feel the width! these are not big canals and are quite shallow at the edges and on the bends. MR was much easier as she could sidle passed without taking up any space. Although Francoise will be good on the big canals.

      Things ‘perch’ on our side rails and provide us with hours of entertainment; I loved the swallows when they took a breather, but the poor fledgling sparrow nearly broke my heart (although it ended well).

      That bookshop was fabulous with the smell of ‘must’ thrown in gratuit. 2 weeks pocket money (or was it 3) bought me a record and the anticipation of a Saturday morning in the booths – requesting as many tracks as we could get away with – was beyond thrilling. Our local record shop would only allow two people per booth. Ahh, those were the days.


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