1192-1197: Last Days in Corsica

1192 – Curving Out of Corte

Tuesday 11th June 2019

We showed, emptied and filled at the campsite.  It had been a lovely haven next to the river to enjoy being back in Jez.  The only two issues with the site, were the price (EUR31 p.n.) and the noise from the river, meaning we had to repeat everything we said!

We headed across the hills from Corte.  Poor James, who elects to drive first, got the rough end of the drive … concentration for him and scenery for me (with some back seat driving thrown in … I can’t help myself!).

We encountered some wild life along the way …

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Out of nowhere, with no dog or shepherd in sight, these careered down the hill at break neck speed across the road, to stop and graze the other side.

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The car that was behind us, was impatient and we don’t know how he hasn’t a sheep head shaped imprint in his bodywork.

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At our coffee stop, we were surrounded by pigs – their gate was no barrier; they went under it!  Obviously these had not yet been taught to read … the orange splodges are our paws and dog on board stickers.  CO2 were not impressed … Corrie quite scared.

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Amazing scenery …

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They were not going at our hedgehog pace, so J pulled over tho let them pass with a cheery wave.

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 The highest road mountain pass in Corsica.

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Evening snuggles.  And yes, I’ve been trying some Rose wines … but I’ll be going back to white or red, as I’m finding them a bit flavourless.


1193 – Being Still (Again)

Wednesday 12th June

We hadn’t planned to stay a second day here, but it was such a lovely campsite.  We did some more laundry and I walked CO2 in the olive groves.

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Lazy watchers on.

 

1194 – Tortoises

Thursday 13th June

We stopped at Europe’s largest (apparently) tortoise sanctuary … I went in and J and CO2 napped.  Apparently there are 1700 species here.  There were certainly species for all around the world and two types of giant.  A real diversity on shell shape and colours.  The way they move and clamber is really quite comic.  But it was verging on hilarious when the omnivore (water is the main habitat) were fed.  They all plopped into the pond which became a maelstrom of swirling water and headed for the pellet and fish platter.  Using only their mouths they climbed into the tray, spraying the food with slimy and water, and attempted to pull a whole fish head back to the pond.  Occasionally one would almost get stuck on the rim of the platter and have to sway back and forth and extend a really loooong leg to give a push over the side.

P1170199 Chomp Chomp Chomp.  Gently does it. 

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Don’t move, i’ll go over you.

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All still and calm in our world, until …

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… food’s this way chaps!

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One of the two Giant species.

1195 – Ajaccio by Bike, Boat and Train

Friday 14th June

Another ACSi campsite (reduced prices out of season), but a 12 km bike ride from Ajaccio.  The campsite advised us to cycle into the town, only 3 km away, and then to get the boat shuttle to Ajaccio.  Fairly cool as we set off, but every now and again, a warm wind would caress us.  It was a forerunner of the heat to come.  The boat worked fine, taking across the bay.  On arrival, J breakfasted … in the shade … it was hotting up.  As we started the walking tour i’d prepared, we spotted the Tourist Petit Train … something we should normally avoid, as surely this is for the elderly and infirm?  Having only just arrived and now wilting, we went for it … the justification being that it would take us out along the coast for a view of the Sanguinaires (islands), which was too far to walk.  we also saw the outside of the building where Napoleon was born.

We then wandered up the Fesch Museum, which if we’d had more time, we would have visited, but we had timed tickets back (2.45, or wait for the 5.45) and needed lunch … in the shade.  We both had salad.  In fact, so did everyone else in the restaurant.  Temperature was now 40C!

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Porticcio where we caught the shuttle to Ajaccio.

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Ajaccio.

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Napoleon dressed as a Roman Emperor with 4 lions at the base.  Interesting that the Roman emperors had statues of themselves done in the guise of Gods …. 

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CO2 made friends with the people in front and behind us on the Petit Train.

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Just to prove we have actually been on one!

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Another Napoleon memorial just outside town.

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The Sanguinaires Islands.  This was also our ice cream stop!

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The Fesch Museum housing the best collection of Italian art on Corsica.  Fesch was obviously an interesting character… Napolean’s uncle and ecclesial and military by turn.  He accompanied Boney through Italy, working his passage as the Quartermaster, amassing art on the way,. Afterwards he re-doned his clerical robes and was apppointed as a Cardinal to Rome.  He persuaded the Pope to attend Napolean’s coronation as Emperor.  But Napoleon, who believed in self made men, took his crown from the hands of the Pope and placed it on his own head.

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The small harbour where we waited for the shuttle back.

 1196 – Filitosa

Saturday 15th June

We spent the morning at Filitosa, possibly the most important megalithic site in Corsica.  It was only discovered in 1946 and has been dated to 3300BC.  Around 1500 menhirs of 2-3 metres height were erected, but i think only about 20 remain.   Many were carved with human faces, armour and weapons.  They may have been designed to ward off the enemy, the Toreens, but were unsuccessful, as many were later used as building materials by the invaders.  The Toreens built circular stone structures which may have been used as temples.  Some of these stone structures are very well preserved.

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The boulders around the site were also amazing, the way the wind and rain had shaped them.  Many really did look like animals.

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And our best girl loves to roll in anything that has come out of any animals bottom, in this case cow dung!  Shampoo and set back at the motorhome!

1197- Father’s Sunday in Sartene

Sunday 16th June

We nearly skipped Sartene as there was no parking in the town.  What I had identified turned out to be a Best Western Hotel :(.  About 1.3km out fo the town was a viewpoint above the cemetery … we stopped for coffee and re-read the guide book … austere, square and stone architecture, with winding narrow alleys.  We hadn’t planned to have lunch but J is a father of 4 and it was Father’s Day!  Another salad as it was too hot for anything else.  Our last night was another ACSI outside Bonnifaccio.

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View above the cemetery.

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Sartene.

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A bit of sausage anyone???