Tuesday, 15 August 2017


We had an unused pair of crutches.  Our friends, currently in their camper van at Commercy, needed a pair of crutches.  A no-brainer - today’s outing was to Commercy!

 We found them at a small site between the River Meuse and the Canal.

Canal side...

...river side.

 Cloudy and a little rain but an unexpected and nice day out.  Mission accomplished.

Monday, 14 August 2017

Another little tour.

We took the familiar route from Damvillers, over the Meuse Heights to Consenvoye but then turned left, by the Velo, driving on less-familiar roads to Mort d’Homme.  We have been here in the past but not for some time.  Such a peaceful spot now but pounded by the noise of shells and battle 100 years ago.

The battle lines. The red "explosions" denote destroyed villages only some of which have been re-built.

The motto was "They shall not pass" - and they didn't but, oh, how high the cost.
From there we took a road new to us (yes, we’re discovering there are are a few!) through Champ, a hamlet, and Neuvelle, a village, through pretty countryside with occasional sightings of the nearby River Meuse.

We came to a T-junction whose sign told us where we’d been but not where to go! I thought I recognised this main road so we turned right and I was proved right as we were soon in Vacherauville! Good to know the mind is still working!! 

We decided to investigate the bottom of this small village where we were unable to stop the other day and, voila! the little car park was empty!  We pull in and quickly find the canal path friends had told us about. 

Although the main road is not far away, only a faint drone from the heavier vehicles could be heard.  Picnic tables and benches line the path and we enjoyed listening to the birds and watching butterflies visiting the wild flowers which line the bank.

A pretty, peaceful place which we will return to.

Sunday, 13 August 2017

A little tour

We take the road, then track, that leads up to the top of Cote de Chaumont-devant-Damvillers - or, as we refer to it, Henry’s Hill.  I have previously written about Henry Gunther - the last American killed in the First World War.

The weather was lovely and the views magnificent and worth the slow drive up and down the track which surface has deteriorated since our last visit…many stones and deep tractor-wheel ruts take concentration and less-than-walking speed! 

Views from the top...

Towards Damvillers.

Towards Chaumont.

Typical of many fields in the area now that the harvesting is done.

Part of the Woevre Plain.

In memory of Henry Gunther.

These shots were taken coming down again!!

Safely down and past the Chateau of Chaumont.
 From Chaumont we drove through the beautiful countryside, up, over and down the ridge of the Meuse Heights and at Vacherauville we decided to check out the canal area but the small car park by the water was full so we went on to Belleville-sur-Meuse - the last place before Verdun.

Normally the car park between the Mairie and Post Office is full and very busy when we pass to and from Verdun on our supermarket shopping trips but on this sunny, summer Sunday there was just one car with a family of two adults and two children who were trying different parts of the canal bank to fish from.

The church faces the war memorial in the car park.

 The Mairie (Hotel de Ville - Town Hall) and the Salle des Fetes (village hall)

A view of a tree from the bench!

THE tree!

A pleasure boat goes by - we and they wave...of course!  We have been on this trip which was pleasant but a short ride which was disappointing - we had been hoping the boat would go upstream. But at least we've now seen this part of the river on water and land now!  And it's another tick on the list of places yet to be visited and an enjoyable afternoon.