Mini Cooper Road Trip Day 2, the Pyrenees

The Hotel Residence provided us a comfortable (if a little hot) night – I am beginning to think central heating is a little over-rated (but not sure my in-laws would agree). We awoke to the birds singing in the huge cherry tree outside the window and no rain! We left Villeneuve-sur-Lot and drove through orchard after orchard (hazelnut, walnut, plum, peach and apple – I’m quite good at drive past leaf recognition) as we wound our way towards Agen and onto Condom (snigger, snigger). Despite the arrival of the rain we had a walk around Condom then stopped for morning coffee. France fact – Condom is home to lots of friendly Frenchmen who like Minis so much they stop us in carparks to chat and touch the car fondly!

The rain had stopped by the time we found a lovely lakeside picnic area, but the Millefeuilles were a bit of a mistake (I suggest a Centfeuille would be better), really messy to eat and rather sickly. It wasn’t great bumping along the extremely bumpy roads of Eauze stuffed full of Millefeuilles! After lunch we left the fruit orchards behind and began driving through vines again; Armagnac and Cotes de Gascoigne. Then came the fields of muddy white ducks – no doubt foie-gras in the making. I do love how on a drive through France it is not just the styles of the houses that change with the regions but the food produced too.

The further south we went the brighter the weather and therefore the brighter Ade’s mood – he really doesn’t do wet! Another thing to lift his spirits was a sign to the Gorges de Save that proved to be a pretty detour and it has become something of a tradition for us to drive the Mini down as many Gorges roads as possible. I was surprised how close to St Gaudens we were before we could see the Pyrenees, but there is something lovely about your first sighting of snow-capped mountains. Ade has made another fab choice of hotel for this evening – it has wifi speed to die for and we can see the mountains from the bedroom window. Gizmo also has a safe indoor overnight parking spot (no view, but he does have the balcony spot). Tomorrow we will head east along the mountain passes to Ax-les-Thermes.![](upload://8U4J4rpz96fYHAZU8WQUg5DmOvG.jpg)