We arrived in Vitry le Francois on Thursday, intending to stay only one night. The port was good and Pascale the Captainaire was very helpful and friendly. We needed to find a place where we could give the boat a good clean, inside and out. When Nuala heard there was a good washer dryer on the site and that there was special price if we stayed for three nights, that clinched it and we decided to stay.
Vitry le Francois is an odd place. Due to its strategic location (it is a major junction for three canals, three motorways and three train lines), it was completely destroyed during WWII, except for the Church. The whole town was rebuilt, it has wide streets and modern buildings. We are now so used to seeing very old buildings and narrow streets in the centre of French towns, that it was unusual to see a very modern town.
It was a great place to stop to work on the boat as we realised that there was not a lot of sightseeing or things to do in the town. This meant that we could not find any excuses to avoid working on the boat. Furthermore, there are a number of very good large DIY stores not far from the boat and we were able to get all the bits and pieces we needed to carry out repairs on the boat.
Because we had worked so hard, we treated ourselves to dinner in a good restaurant on the main square. The boat is as good as new and outside the cleanest it has ever been!
It’s now Monday morning and we need to leave, as we have to be in Strasbourg by the 11th June….165 km and 105 locks away! It’s pouring rain!
However, we cannot set off as the next part of the journey to Nancy, the bridges are so low that we will have to take the canopy down and neither us want to spend the day getting wet as we steer! So who knows we may end up in Vitry for another night.