90% of people smoke! this shocked us, seriously, everywhere you went people were smoking.
Today we woke to rain, it didn’t worry me as I was off to Bayeux, I headed down to reception to get a taxi to the appropriate train station, only to be told that because it was raining, there would be a half hour wait, sigh, the nice man on reception said I should take the metro, I explained to him that we had difficulty understanding it, he explained exactly what I should do, and off I went, got the ticket, first triumph, got the right train, thank goodness I didn’t need to change trains until I got to the tgv station. Got to the Bayeux train with minutes to spare, yippee, I’ve mastered the metro in Paris.
We stopped for lunch at Amboise, a beautiful town where Leonardo da Vinci is buried at the chateau there, we didn’t have long and literally had to run the last part of the visit.
We then went to the best chateau of the day at Chenoceau, it was beautiful both inside and out, once again we had to hurry and were disappointed we couldn’t stay longer to look around the gardens and lounge around and have a drink.
They had the most beautiful floral arrangements in every room made by two resident florists with flowers from the gardens.
The last chateau of the day was Chombord, by far the biggest but not as nice as some, still impressive just by the size tho.
Today we have mooched around the city, walked and walked to Eiffel Tower and then all the way along to the Louvre, had an ice cream and a drink or 3 on the way. We haven’t worked out the metro system here it is hard to decipher, but have the buses sussed, yay.
Back to Paris, and this morning up at sparrows to go on a two day tour, today was driving through the Normandy region to Mont St Michel, wow awesome
This bus tour is great, we got the front seat on a double bus, sensational views. We are in Angers for the night and then off to the Loire Valley to see some Chateaus.
Yesterday we left Villefranche and headed on the train to Avignon. We are staying in the old walled city, it was a lot cooler and dryer climate here.
It p’d down all day but stopped about 9pm. Just in time for us to go to a show inside the walls of the Palace in the internal courtyard, these are the walls that the show was project on, four sides, 360 degrees of show, it was amazing. http://www.lesluminessences-avignon.com/
Here are some photos from the show, it went for 45 minutes and the sound effects made the ground vibrate, even though it was all In French it was still spectacular
Our last day dawned hot and sunny. Trev took me for a walk to the next bay for brekky of espresso and crossaint, yum.
Got back and we all headed to Eze on the train (2 stops away) we got off and waited for the bus to take us up to the old village of Eze it was about 30 degrees and we were cursing Jeff Turner, who recommended we go there, the bus eventually arrived and took us up the hill about 20 minute ride facing backwards and so hot, felt sick and couldn’t wait to get off, Jeff’s name was total mud now. Had a wee sit down in the shade and some lunch, then tackled the walk up the hill. It is an amazing medieval village so stunning the photos don’t do it justice, and the garden at the top is sensational, thanks Jeff it was so worth it.
We got back down and realised we would have to wait an hour for the bus and then possibly half an hour for the train, that was eating into our beach time, so we eventually flagged down a taxi, best move ever, comfy ride home, and although he was from Monaco, it was 45 euro well spent, even though I was having a fit because the meter was saying $145 and I was panicking, all worked out well and we finished the afternoon soaking up the rays on the beach.
I had a busy few hours at the quilt exhibition and didn’t manage to see all the exhibitions, I had about 30 mins left before I needed to locate the bus stop to start my journey back (I had allowed myself 40 mins to find it, experience had taught me this). So I spent my last 30 mins in the Merchants Mall – holy moley girls, think of our merchants mall at symposium and that would be a very small portion of this one, every Stall was different, some quite French, others American or English, a whole area devoted to ‘country’, I didn’t even go in there, did a quick circuit and bought a few wee bits, a lot of stalls had ‘no photos’ so I didn’t get any here. That done, I headed to find the bus stop, there were thousands of women milling around, I tried to ask one where the bus stop was but she was unsure I wandered aimlessly, hot, tired and hungry (I hadn’t eaten since 7am and it was now 6.30), I approached a guy directing traffic and asked him he directed me down the road and around the corner, off I went, found the bus stop and sat down to wait, after 15 mins I was getting concerned that no one else was waiting, out of all those thousands of women surely there would be at least one other getting the bus to the train station, I then saw a bus turning the corner down the street, so I took off running, there was some ladies waiting, the bus pulled up and sure enough it was my bus, where we got on there was no signs, no shelter nothing to signify that it was a bus shelter, WTF! Anyway, I was on my way, caught the train to Strasbourg, and then the train to the airport, yay Air France were still flying my flight, phew. Got to Nice at 11.30pm missed the last train to villefranche so got a taxi, fell into bed. This is the shortened version of my travel adventure, needless to say I learnt a lot about travel in France and have learnt to read/guess French.
This is as far as Jenny got, I got a fit of the giggles watching her trying, and she started laughing and couldn’t go any further so had to go around the long way
They even had a New Zealand flax in the garden, labelled.
Got back, and raced to the beach for a refreshing swim, headed out to dinner at the restaurant that the others had been having breakfast lunch and dinner for two days, sensational
For those who aren’t quilters, skip this post now, lol
There were lots of this Yoko Saito quilt by French women, the one above is Yokos and the couple below were just two of the many variations
Here is a Kaffe Fasset one, lol
I will post more soon