Category Archives: France

Sophie Hoards Seashells by the Seashore After a Day of Biking Hell

We made Sophie miserable yesterday.  Not intentionally, of course.  We meant well.

After a morning at the small town square where there is a modest daily market during the summer (with a beautiful produce stand nonetheless) and a lunch consisting of some of the food we had such a hard time choosing at the hypermarket, we set out on an adventure with the bikes we’ve rented for our stay on Île-de-Ré.

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Bread and Castles

We had to overcome a huge challenge these last two days while on our castle marathon.  France is very expensive.  Meals at restaurants, even for lunch, cost at least $50-$60 for a family of four and that’s without alcohol.  So we’ve tried very hard to mitigate the damage to our travel budget by taking advantage of the beautiful weather and gorgeous scenery to enjoy picnic lunches where we can.

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Castles, Castles Everywhere

The castles are everywhere.  Like weeds, they crop up along the Loire River every few miles.  Each one more spectacular than the last because successive kings had to outdo their predecessors, their queens had to outdo their predecessors and in some cases, the kings’ mistresses had to outdo their queens.

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The Wanderers

The four of us woke up this morning raring to go after a very good night’s sleep.  Chloe and Sophie were simply wiped out from the long travel day and my husband and I had pills to thank for our decent slumber.  Refreshed and excited, we made our way to Paris where we had a most excellent time wandering through the streets with no particular destination in mind other than a foiled visit to Notre Dame (more on that below).

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Au Revoir, Paris

Not to be outdone by yesterday’s adventure, I was determined to make our last day in Paris count.  We were out and about for 10 hours.  Below is the route we took today.  Again, click on the link below to see the entire map.  We walked about five miles.

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The “Grands Magasins”…Ad Nauseum

How many people do you think would spend an entire day shopping in Paris, only to come home with absolutely nothing?  If you answered “none,” you’re wrong.  The correct response is actually two, now that Chloe and I have returned home from a day of failing to find things to buy – for her in particular. I saw a bag that I almost bought, but got cold feet.  I may have to rectify that tomorrow.

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Parc Asterix

In a continued effort to expose Chloe and Sophie to as much French culture (both popular and otherwise) as possible, we took the girls to the epitome of French amusement parks, Parc Asterix, today.  We made a concerted effort to stay away from the amusement park that shall remain nameless, because when in Rome…or more accurately as far as the comic strip on which the park is based goes, when in Gaul, do as the Gauls do.

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