The motorhome, the dog, the magnets, the coffee: meeting with Jean-Pierre, motorhome owner

We visit Jean-Pierre’s motorhome. We are interested with him in a few small details of layout, accessories and decorative elements. The opportunity for the motorhome owner to tell us a few anecdotes.

Jean-Pierre Ruellé is president of the UCCF (Union of motorhome drivers in France). A national club, which brings together users of motorhomes and converted vans. Jean-Pierre welcomes us in a large integral Pilote. The heavyweight version of a model that also exists in 3.5 tonnes. But the motorhome driver has not always traveled in a large frame. ” I laugh seeing the vans coming out today. These are the plans we saw 40 years ago. I had an HY, we were driving at 80 an hour, we had to stop regularly. I bought it used and fitted it myself. There was no technical control, we asked ourselves fewer questions. One day, in the heart of the Peloponnese, the clutch pedal breaks. A peasant passes by, he says to us: “No problem”. He’s going back. And he comes back with a tow truck. He takes us to the village. There was a blacksmith. The repair was done there, the old way… »

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From the artisanal van to the full truck

“It’s an H2O umbrella, made in Normandy, one of the last producers in France. We visited, it’s a small club, there are 5 or 6 of them. The umbrella is guaranteed for life. During our visit they were fixing one that a lady had bought 5 years earlier…”

Between the van fitted out by hand and the integral with a central bed, progress was made slowly: “ After the HY, I had the Estafette, then I stopped for about ten years. I am getting remarried, and my wife says to me: “I would like to go camping”. I suggested that he rent one for a week. At the end, she said to me, “It’s a shame we didn’t take it for 15 days”. So we bought a motorhome, a 5.80 m profile. You climbed into bed with a staircase. When someone was taking a shower, they would get stuck if the other had pulled up the stairs. That’s how we got bigger. And then with the dog, when it rains, it’s small 5.80 m. »

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The dog has his safety belt

Jean-Pierre and Michèle, his wife, are traveling with a little black dog, Nils, who barks when a journalist enters the cell… This is no doubt why we immediately pay attention to equipment dedicated to dogs. Starting with a comfortable cushion placed on the side seat. ” It has a basket at the bottom, a basket at the top. When the road turns, he’s down. But most of the time, he stays on top. We also notice Nils’ seat belt. A leash with a car belt clip on one side, a carabiner on the other. ” It is essential for the road. In the event of sudden braking. For his safety and for ours. When we had the labrador I had fiddled with a seat belt recovered from a wrecker, with a carabiner. »

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We turn to the kitchen, where there is a barometer, a small matching clock, and a nice collection of magnets. ” That’s Michele! We put double-sided to hold them. There are the poppies from the Caen memorial, and a poppy bought in Ypres. Here, the City of the Sea [à Cherbourg, NDLR], the Rosetta stone, a souvenir from Venice, another from Valence, from Vienna. And there, it’s a postcard from the scourtins factory. Vegetable fiber surfaces, used as a filter in traditional olive oil presses. It’s in Nyons. There is a service area, by the way, near the center. »

220 V for cafe and mobile office

We also notice the coffee machine. A capsule model, which produces espresso, but requires a 220V power supply. Yes, Michèle likes good coffee, and we have the lithium battery. For me, what is important is to recharge the computer, the camera and to connect the printer when we are with the club. »

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