Jet Lag and Euro shock have passed

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May 26th, 2005, 02:01 PM
  #1
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Jet Lag and Euro shock have passed

Notes about our trip thru Normandy. Just got back from France, great time, lousy weather. Shouldn't complain, 3 other trips to France were all in the 60's, perfect for checking out castles, chateaux and all the other sights. This trip was planned with great help from this board, I thank all of you.
A few observations: Far fewer tourists, especially Americans. Saw "Service Complet" on restaurant check only once, I even asked another patron (a German traveler) if the tip was no longer added. His reply was
"if you don't see the words, perhaps you will leave an additional tip but it is customarily included". "Breakfast Included" has just about disappeared from the scene. Happened only once this 2 week trip.
Our route started with 2 Paris days and ended with 2 more Paris days. Finally saw Mona and a few other of the more famous Louvre masterpieces. Was attacked in the Metro, that was an experience! Planned return on 6:15 shuttle to CDG with time to spare. Good thing too, the driver made 4 extra pick-ups after us that took the better part of an hour. Don't know how to plan that in the future.

Almost divorced my other half in Arromanches. We know enough to get rooms early in the day but after seeing some of the sights on the way, we arrived in Arromanches about 4PM and the hotels were full. A kindly receptionist at Hotel de la Marine suggested to us that a farm "on the road to Creully" has room for the night. My more adventurous husband immediatly headed that way. I had visions of cows out back and chickens in the yard-not for this traveller. You guessed it, it was the best place of our trip. Called Ferme de la Ranconniere, it hasn't been a farm for years. The stone buildings date from the 13th and 14th centuries with additions along the way. Room was beautiful, you have to take dinner and breakfast(1/2 pension) with them--all for the grand total of 56 Euros a person. Our bill was 123.20 Euro-can't forget the 2 glasses of wine each. They have a great web site so if you will be in the area check out www.ranconniere.com. All the sights of Normandy with a quick side trip thru Dinan and Fougeres lived up to our expectations. The only thing that suprised us was the cost of everything. Between the exchange rate plus the rise in prices, this trip was very expensive. All you can do is forget about it and cringe when the credit card bill comes in the mail. And yes, many of the gas stations have signs posted that read "No American Credit Cards". Now that we are home, laundry is done and luggage put away, its time to start planning next year in Italy. Need a good Italian for beginners book. Can't wait!
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May 26th, 2005, 02:36 PM
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Thanks for your report.
Out of curiosity - if you carry an American credit card, do you have to pay cash for gasoline?
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May 26th, 2005, 02:51 PM
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Hi Julie, we made it a point of looking for gas at about 1/2 tank, knowing that there were sometimes problems either finding a station at all or finding one that is manned. We stopped at 2 unattended stations that had the no American CC sign, the 3rd one had an attendant but we paid with Euros anyway. We all know gas is expensive but these little rental cars get great mileage, and this time we had a diesel-cheaper per liter. Ask your rental agent for diesel
if possible. Gas is also much cheaper at the hypermarche's. These huge markets will take credit cards, I think. We couldn't find one at the time we needed it. Happy Travels, yy4me
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May 26th, 2005, 03:05 PM
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Please give the story of being attacked on the Metro.
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May 26th, 2005, 03:33 PM
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Hi Benitakaren, Right after our return on 5/23 @ 2:56PM I posted the story of the attack titled: France Metro Snatch Attack. Hope you can find it. yy4me
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May 26th, 2005, 04:32 PM
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Thanks for posting the Ranconniere web site. It does look absolutely delightful. And the prices are very reasonable.
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May 30th, 2005, 02:15 PM
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Was it worth it to go to Fougeres? It will be out of our way when we are in Dinan b/c we need to get south of Nantes to meet friends. It looks incredible in pictures...but is it worth going out of your way?
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May 30th, 2005, 04:23 PM
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Hi Wren, Fougeres was one of the best stops of our trip. The Castle (Circa 1166) is huge and in great repair. Stayed at the Balzac Hotel, on rue National. The room was clean, fairly basic and very near the sights. All at the bargain total of 48€ plus breakfast at 6€. It took us less than a half hour to drive from Dinan to Fougeres. Most of the early city is at the base of a rather long hill, nice walk down, long walk back. Worth it.
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May 30th, 2005, 04:53 PM
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yy4me -

To find all the threads that you have posted to, just click on your screen name either at the top of the page, after "Welcome", or on one of your posts, after "Author".

Here's a link to the thread "France Metro Snatch Attack" -

http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...2&tid=34623962

I'm glad you had a nice adventurous journey, and returned home safely. Peace.

Robyn >-
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May 30th, 2005, 06:27 PM
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Thanks for your answer, yy. We have plans to spend the night in Mont St. Michel, then drive to Brittany along the Dinard/ St. Malo coastline, and then go to Dinan for the evening. If we go to Fougeres, it would be the next morning before we try to get to Nantes by the early afternoon. Castle does look amazing...and it is good to hear that it lived up to its pictures in the guidebooks.
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