The morning began with an unpleasant surprise as the camping place employee was angry that we did not call her at night to tell her that I had arrived. Explaining to her that we did not want to disturb her late in the evening did not really calm her down. Not the smoothest French could convince her that we only did it having the best intentions and her sleep in mind. In the end the solar industry engineer spoke the magic sentence “we were wrong and you are right” and somehow that was all she really wanted to hear. A good lesson for life. Some people first need to hear that they are right. I will never forget what a change that made.
The area is full of fields and in general everything is remarkably clean and well maintained. Every park bench seems to be sponsored by the one big industrial complex here and one gets a feeling where the money for all this comes from:
The local centrale nucléaire de Cattenom, which I passed soon afterwards seems to do a lot to be popular with the locals and tourists. There was even free electricity for camping vans on a parking lot in front of it next to a lake, but no regular socket for my scooter:
This really makes one think about electro-mobility and renewable Energy. France is very big on nuclear power, one reason for that are their troops in or nearby some uranium exporting nations. Let’s say this lowers the price they are asked by the exporting nation’s governments. Of course all of that happens in a postcolonial setting and it is as ugly and messy as one expects. Following the river further, I went 50 km south towards Metz:
Here I visited the Porte des Allemands but did not enter the city as the mandatory mask even outside in the streets gave me the impression that the local situation is quite serious and I should not risk an infection.
Hence I continued my trip. At Lidl in an industrial zone nearby I bought food, some toilettries and plugged the scooter into their free charger:
While the scooter charged, I walked through an automotive hellscape of Californian dimensions crossing a highway to the nearby Decathlon, a sports good chain to buy a few small things for tenting.
Going further up the river I passed a roman aqueduct and after that I took a sharp turn to the west, left the river behind and started going through a slightly hilly landscape with forests until I arrived at a truely lovely camping municipale in Mandres aux Quatre Tours.
This camping place was so lovely and extremely quiet. A dream. The building with the washing facilities was from the 70ies, but well maintained and partially renovated. I was most impressed that they managed to convert an existing room into a wheelchair accessible toilet with shower and enough space. Flowers, trees, silence, this camping place was really all one can ask for. I cannot recommend it enough. Thank you local government of Mandres aux Quatre Tours and thank you government employees for your great labour and taste in gardening.