Due to us once again getting away late from Agen due to the inability to pack the afternoon before due to the rain, we arrive in Limoges about 4.
I’ve been in contact with a few boys who funnily enough I played with at different clubs who have now come together in the one team.
That’s the great thing about the rugby community where I just don’t know you get that connection from anywhere else.
It’s one of the things I’m most grateful for during my playing career. It’s one of the things that first appealed to me to take up the game and one of the things I’d encourage kids to consider when choosing a sport. There’s really nothing like it where not only can you go to so many different corners over the world but the bonds you make are unbelievable, everyone is so welcoming with open arms.
Rome Taelaga, once known as Nifo Nifo I played with at the Central Coast Rays in the Australian Rugby Championship (ARC) in 2007. I also went and caught up with him when he was playing in Italy in 2012 where he played for Prato, just outside Florence.
Pingi Talaapitaga I first played with back in a NSW schoolboys team, before playing alongside him at the mighty Warringah Rats. He then moved to NZ to pursue the pro rugby dream. I played with him again there in 2013 with the Bay of Plenty Steamers based out of the beautiful Mount Maunganui/Tauranga.
Kimami Situati was training with the Reds full time squad in 2012 when I was there. He also ended up at Bay of Plenty in 2013 with myself and Pingi before coming back to Reds where injury meant he missed his opportunity.
It was great catching up with those boys and they’d made the effort to drive over an hour away to come and see me. They didn’t have training the next day and so Nifo, Pingi and myself had a fair few wines and made the most of Kimami being a non drinker and so the designated driver. It was good to catch up with all of them and there were plenty of laughs had.
The next day was always going to be a slow start, and thankfully Ewelina looked after the kids until I rose which was later than I had expected.
Finally I had a feed, few cups of coffee, and Ewelina put my on the breathalyser. No seriously!
It’s mandatory to drive in France with a couple of breathalysers in your car and I had 4, so Ewelina made me blow. I was all good.
We decided to go and tick off Odour-Sur-Glane, about 30 minutes drive from Limoges.
This was a little village where the German SS attempted to massacre the entire village. Over 600 people were killed with the entire village rounded up and executed, men, women and children. I believe only 4 men and 1 woman survived. Horrific.
The French Government left the entire village intact as it was as a reminder of the atrocity so it would not be forgotten.
The access to the village is free, and can only be accessed one way through the exhibition which walks you through a tunnel under a road to get to the village. Very well designed into the side of a hill.
I go through and check out the exhibition as I do and get a better insight into what it was I was looking at.
From there we get some more groceries in the village and head back to Limoges. Cooking dinner and preparing meals for the next day.