Nieul has a pretty château, but I've never actually stopped in the town - only driven through it - usually when I've taken a wrong turning somewhere and am trying to find my way. But I saw on Brocabrac that they had a brocante today, so thought I'd go.
It wasn't the most promising of days, but of late the weather has tended to be a trifle dull or 'autumny' in the mornings, and then brightens up, so I wasn't too worried.
I should have been - or at least I should have taken my umbrella out of the car when I parked it some way out of the town, along the roadside already sporting a long line of parked cars on both sides.
It WAS a huge brocante, and was along nearly all the streets, around the church, in the main parking area, outside the château, along the little lake, and it would have been great if the weather had held.
Unfortunately it didn't, and I barely got to the stalls alongside the lake before the rain started. Lightly at first and then coming down in veritable stair rods!
I was pleased to find a cafe open and sat inside with coffee and a croissant, hoping the rain would stop, or at least go back to the 'just showery' stage. It didn't. After 2 coffees I decided to brave it and go back to the car. Most stallholders had packed up by this time anyway and those that hadn't were starting to feel that home and lunch indoors was calling them.
By the time I reached my car I was like a drowned rat (look away now if you are of a squeamish disposition)...
...with my hair and clothes soaked and my mascara running. Back home for some hot soup and more coffee!