A previous trip to France

Old Aug 22nd, 2012, 09:25 PM
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A previous trip to France

posting it so I can store it here.
After picking up our car, we headed to Burgundy with no reservations for two nights.
Our first stopwas Avallon. We had lunch at the Le Relais des Gourmets where I Tasted my first Soupier d' Escargots, a snail soup topped with a crust so that it looked like a giant mushroom. We visited the church of Saint-Lazure, a rare Romanesque curiosity.
Luck took us to Tournas where we found an unusual motel situated in a lovely parc behind stone walls. Or room was a wooden cottage with a porch bedecked with trailing geraniums. Breakfast was served by a lovely pool.
Next on our way to Gorge du loup, we had lunch in La Mure at Le Pub.
I had a Salade Grenobloise, consisting of greens, walnuts,gruyere cheese and poivrons.
The drive through the Grenoble area was wonderful with mountains all around you.
We were driving on the Route de Napolean, just outside of Gap in the commune of
Senez when suddenly our car wouldn't steer and stopped at a dangerous spot, right before a stone archway where drivers toot to let you know they are passing through..
J. had to stand on the road to wave to cars to pass us. A red car pulled over and a lovely woman from Paris offered to be of help. She phoned Europe Car for us and our hotel to tell them we couldn't make our dinner reservation. They told her to tell us they'll have something for us. She stayed two hours with us until the tow truck arrived. Kisses all around and many thank yous. The driver drove us to the garage in St Andre Les Alpes.
He called a cab for us, locked up shop and said to phone him in the morn.It was way over an hour before the cab arrived (coming from another town) It was an hour and a half drive to our hotel.
We arrived at 11pm. Our host, Jean Pierre served us a salade de fruit de mer.
We ordered my favorite rose from Bandol, a Domaine Templier. In the middle of the meal,
the Sirocco struck, knocking over umbrellas and glasses. We were sitting in a somewhat sheltered corner of the terrace. The Sirocco is warmer and not as fierce as the Mistral.
But, during the night you couldn't convince me as I heard pottery crashing and shutters banging.
The next morning was calm and when we came down for Breakfast, Jean Pierre
said that Euro Car phoned for J. to to taxi to nice to pick up another car that afternoon.
first we took a taxi to La Rouet for our reservation at the lovely La Table de mon Moulin
( no longer there, they moved to nice)the Moulin had luxury details. Large embroided napkins, beautiful hand crafted serving pieces that had designs of grasses and insects.
Mme Silva told me they were mad especially for her in Valbone. Be left before dessert so J. could get on to Nice.When J returned, we drove up to the perche village of Gourdon
which stares down at us when we are at breakfast at the hotel. We went to the top for a pastis at Le Nid d' Aigle because of the magnificent views.
On our way again with no reservations. I suggest we try to stay at an old favorite in
the Aveyron , The Magnolias in the sleepy village of Plaisance.This hotel was once
the country residence of the French writer Paul Valery and his family. Our host and chef
informs us that the previous owner died and the wife sold the place.
The nest morning we leave for Eygalieres and at our hotel is a message from a friend living in a nearby village to come for aperos. When we get there we catch up on on updated in our lives and we are invited back for the next evening for a dinner party.
In the afternoon, we have reservations at La chassagnette in the Camargue, my favorite dining spot in that area (we also like Le Telline) We sat on the terrace facing the herb beds where butterflies were dancing overhead. The following few days we went to the
Arletan Museum in Arles founded by Mistral, a fete in Lourmarin, the Saturday market in St Remy, a flea market in Plan de Organ. We dined at Petite France and our yearly visit to the Bistro du Paradou, many a pastis and a few diners at or local , Le Progress across from our hotel Auberge Provencal.
Another yearly stop is Maussane where I had the best Pave of Taureau sitting by the fountain. We also dined at Au Ravi. One night we splurged for a dinner in Eygalieres
At Bistro Bru. Our final night we dine at our Auberge and stop for a night cap at Le Progress to say goodbye and we head for the Loire. Friends, Walter and Ken have booked us into a
hotel in Noyes sur Cher. They pick us up after check in and give us a tour and visited a few chateaux later back to thier home and garden for wine and pastis. dinner at our hotel.
following day, our friends take us to their local market, very impressive and they buy food for lunch which they served in their garden. We leave with their garden's tomatoes.
. On the road again, stopping at the beautiful village , La Couvertoirade and eat at the first place we come too as J. is hungry. and now to find a place to stay.The lovely village of Treignac, we found La Brasserie llooking charming with it's exterior covered in ivy
but the rooms were charmless, but heck it's only for the night before we head on to the
Vienne, to the village of Bonne where we are staying with friends who greet us with a pastis and their dogs running to greet us, knowing I will walk them. There is a new litter, and I'm offered one of the pups because my dog had died, but too much red tape involved We have dinner that night of Wild Boar that my friend Michael had hunted (Michael died last year) Another night we are served polet that they raise. The wife, Marie Claire has a huge cage of dozens of colored birds. Caramel, the cat, has killed a small rabbit and presents it to me. Michael takes us to his friend's place. this man breeds hunting dogs. Never have I been to a place with so many dogs. Down the road from our friends is the Chateau Touffou. two12th centry keeps and four round towers linked in the 16th century
by the Renaissance building. One afternnon we drove to Potiers to lunch at Le Poitevin
and another time at the chain we like for oysters La Taverne de Maitre Kanter. one day we went to Ligue to St Martin's church dating from the 16th centry. Weattended an exhibition
of art works made of Des Emaux,which the town is famous for (Enamal on copper)
In Poitiers we visit the parc de Blossac, given to the city by Michel's great grand parents.
J. sitting in the gazebo reading the Herald Tribune but nodding of, so I leave him to nap and i visit the zoo in the parc.
The Chateau de Rochechouart is next on our list It has a museum of contemporary art.
I wasn't crazy over the current exhibit but one of the rooms has ancientfrescos telling the story of Hercules These wall paintings probably date from the 16th century but were only discovered in 1965 On our way backto our hosts we stop in Chassenon to see the ancient Gall-Roman town of Cassinomagus and it's thermal baths exceptinaly preserved
A last dinner at our friends with the Mayor of Chavigney as a guest.
After breakfast I take the dogs for a last walk. Lots of teary good-bys. They load us up with bounty from their garden, peaches, grapes and herbs. now off to our last stop, a B&B in Normandy, in Fourges where we have been staying for yearsand have become friends. We stop to buy a bottle of pastis to share with paul our host. Wifedoesn't drink. Our last meal is at the moulin de Fourges, another yearly stop. On departing, Paul gives me a bottle of Farm Calvados, The best i ever tasted. We arrived at CDG and dine at brasserie Flo in terminal.F. Take off was an hour late
A foot Note: Paul and Josette have closed the B&b but invited us back
Ths trip just outside of Chavigny we got caught for the first time in the radar trap and it cost us 90euros credit card not accepted
cigalechanta is offline  
Old Aug 22nd, 2012, 09:28 PM
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That's odd, I typed in paragraphs
but not showing???
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Old Aug 22nd, 2012, 10:12 PM
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I know you are just storing it here, as you say, so I suppose none of us are supposed to read it. Why would you do that?

In any case it is really difficult to read in its current dense format, so I won't even try.

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Old Aug 23rd, 2012, 06:53 AM
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It doesn't mean no one should read it but I can understand YOU not wanting to in it's current form
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Old Aug 23rd, 2012, 07:47 AM
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Mimi, it sounded like a sweet trip (except for the car trouble-egad!)

I'm also thinking about putting more trips online and wondering if blogs might be better--it would be easier to edit them and plop pix down along the way. I just posted a 2005 trip and found some of the information dated.

I always enjoyed your writing style, btw.
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Old Aug 23rd, 2012, 09:00 AM
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I actually waded through that solid block of print because I have enjoyed your previous trip reports, Cig., but I must confess this one confuses me. When was "previous"? It seems more of a fragment, or notes, rather than a trip report, as I can't tell who was on the trip, when it happened or any of the other context that would allow one to identify with your trip and connect with the participants.
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Old Aug 23rd, 2012, 09:16 AM
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I'm with TD on this report. I too have enjoyed reading and seeing how many of your friends in France are involved.
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