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After yesterday’s blow-out in Reims, having changed the wheel, we contacted Avis who were literally just round the corner, we went there and got a new car, quickly and easily, very impressive service. Went for a very nice lunch. Then to Diocesan office, TWO Vicars General, one leaving office, dusty and in shorts, clearing up and out, both very friendly, helpful and interested. Then to Rheims Cathedral, wonderful. Organ concert, Messiaen, Br Michael ecstatic.

Useful quiet long-distance footpath routes alongside canals. Met couple of communities of nuns where we could stay. Today long motorway drive to Wisques, there for lunch. Paul Bellot-designed buildings in his distinctive style. Fr. Abbot washes the guests’ hands on arrival, a beautiful gesture of welcome. Office 1934 Antiphonal, quietly sung. Hot here 32 degrees. Marty and Robbie out in sun, Englishman and Scotsman, but no mad dogs!

Images show:  the Chapter House in which William of St Thierry preached, restored after destruction during the First World War, (spot Brother Michael); Abbey Saint-Paul in Wisques; walkers stopping for a drink along the way!