Paris to Nantes
19.04.2012 - 25.05.2012 10 °C
Things I've learned in less than 24 hours:
- The wheelie bag will soon need a wheel alignment ... They are not designed for cobblestone streets
- You can order a goat crepe ... Thankfully the high school french/english dictionary saved the day at the last minute. Poisson = fish = salmon and it was a safe order, even though it was cold!
- The hotel in Nantes has a staircase from a lighthouse (at least I think so). My room is on the third floor (there are only four floors, however there are half floors so I guess there are actually seven floors) oh, and no lift. So much fun dragging luggage up to my room but at least I am here until Monday until I have to drag it down.
- I won't be complaining again about the size of a French lift ...... At least in the Paris hotel, there was a lift ....even though my shower at home was about the same dimensions.
- The tourist office in Nantes offers tours on the same basis as our TAFE Plus courses ....... You book and pay and if there sufficient passengers for a tour it proceeds, otherwise you receive a refund. Yes, the trip from Nantes to Mt Saint Michel did not have enough passengers for Saturday so I will have to rethink that trip.
- Parles vous Anglais, Oui, Merci, Bon jour and Bon soir have been my most frequently used words for the last two days. Only the French could have a word for a night-time hello!
- Even other people at breakfast say to perfect strangers .... Bonjour .....so who am I to be different
- It rains about 3:30pm every afternoon then fines up afterwards. Note to self ... Pack the umbrella every day.
- Coffee, tea and chocolate are the same words in French and English ....... I could survive here forever!
- Chocolate is served with EVERY meal except breakfast! Yup, I could definitely survive here forever!
- Can't figure out the pedestrian crossings ..... No buttons to press to stop traffic ..... Just wait until the little person on the pedestrian light turns green and you're good to cross.
- I wouldn't be alive to write this blog if I was driving. Geographic dyslexia has struck again. Whenever I am in the Northern hemisphere, my sense of direction is definitely geared to still being in the Southern hemisphere.
- Looking left first before crossing the road does not come naturally .... See point above!
- Looking for a taxi driver sitting in the left-hand side driver side does not come naturally either. I looked in a taxi in the rank and thought the driver was out of the cab ...... It turned out he was ....... No driver in either left or right hand seat. Note to self ..... The driver will be on the kerbside ..... Remember this!
- Discovered a sacreligous use for vinyl records ..... One shop advertised they would buy old records ....... About 10 shops further on, in the window was a six shelved round table made from old vinyls. Please don't get distressed With this news Liam.
- Sally was right, there are chemist shops everywhere with their distinctive green flashing neon signs.
- Use the French/English dictionary more often ..... Not sure if some places are cafes or massage parlours.
- Don't get hungry before 7pm as the majority of restaurants won't open to commence serving until strictly 7pm.
So after a lovely train ride this afternoon watching the patchwork of French country side speed past ..... Along with the quaintest of French villages, the train arrived in Nantes. The country fields are coloured lime green/yellow (probably canola?), freshly ploughed brown and dark green crops. It was pretty from the aircraft coming into Paris yesterday as well. Lovely typical French farm houses, chateaux - big and small - dot the landscape between Paris and Nantes. Explored many of the streets surrounding the hotel this afternoon and visited a Cathedral. There are many in this city. The hotel is opposite a beautiful cathedral that has a chime every quarter hour but it can only be heard from outside. my room is very quiet - at the back of the building.
After a dinner of salmon crepe, it was time to walk off two days worth of meals and check out where the patchwork show is tomorrow. I found it without any difficulty .... Well, I had had this afternoon to practice walking in the right direction. However, instinctively, my brain is southern hemisphere oriented.
This city is famous for Breton biscuits. On this evening's walk, a new building had a traditionally-shaped biscuit on the front of the building. Just as I thought about this biscuit city, I passed a street named rue de biscuite!
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Hopefully, check in again tomorrow. Love Lyn x