Fin des vacances

Nous sommes arrivés à la maison; fin des notres vacances en Loire-Atlantique et Bretagne! We’ve had a marvelous time and during our second holiday week we managed to do a lot and also nothing at all.

We relaxed at the cottage we had rented…

We walked in the nearby woods…

And saw beautiful things like the thousands of prehistoric menhirs lined up around Carnac…

… and had dinner in the picturesque town of La Roche Bernard…

We did a boat tour in the gulf of Morbihan, from Vannes to the prehistoric cairn on the island on Gavrinis. The prehistoric grave (built around the time of the pyramids) contained many geometrical carvings, it was just beautiful and fascinating to be there…

But not only the prehistoric site was fascinating. As we were on the island, low tide set in and, boy, did the water move fast! It was like watching a river with a strong current. Boats going against the tide were struggling to get ahead…

When we had left Vannes on the boat, it had been high tide. By the time we got back again some 4 hours later, the tide was low. Where there had been water you now saw land and the jetty, which had been horizontal when we had boarded, was now angled.

The boat trip itself was a lot of fun too, especially on the way back when there was more wind and we even got splashed (especially Mr E) due to going up against the tide in the wake of some other boats that had made waves.

We also went into Nantes again for a day, to see some of ‘Les Machines de l’Île’, just as Rachel had suggested (thank you!). The park is inspired by Jules Verne and Leonardo da Vinci and houses mechanical (partly fantasy) animals, also on carroussels. We didn’t go into the exhibition areas but we did ride the mechanical elephant!

We then went into the centre of Nantes for a late lunch and a gander around the castle grounds (which had been closed the first time we visited due to demonstrations in the vicinity)…

As we had some time to kill before dinner time and we didn’t want to walk anymore, we drove to the nearby town of Saint-Philbert-de-Grand-Lieu where Mr E and I visited the 9th century Carolingian abbey, while mini me napped in the car.

We drove back into Nantes again after and had a lovely dinner at fellow blogger Agnès‘ home with her partner and her lovely daughter who is the exact same age (only 3 hours older) as my son. Thank you again so very much Agnès and family for your hospitality, for the tasty dinner, for sharing your art and your cats, and for the lovely time we had!

Last Saturday we had to leave our rented cottage and started on our 4 hour drive to Paris. We stopped in Chartres for an hour, for the sole purpose of visiting the cathedral there and seeing the stunning 12th/13th century stained glass windows…

We arrived in the Paris hotel at the end of the afternoon, dumped our bags, and then walked to the Eiffel tower which was about 10 minutes away on foot…

From there we took a train to Notre Dame and Quartier Latin where we had dinner. We walked around a bit after and then mini me and I walked along the banks of the Seine to a metro station while Mr E went off on his own.

Mini me and I had tickets to go up the Eiffel tower and as we got there at 9 pm, the Eiffel tower started to sparkle!

I have been up the Eiffel tower several times already but mini me couldn’t remember the last time she had been up, aged 4…

… so she was really excited to go up now, especially in the evening, looking out over all the lights of Paris…

We even (half) saw a proposal happening at the top. We heard applause, looked around and saw a young man get up off his knee and hug a young woman who had apparently accepted his proposal.

And that was it, the end of our French holiday. The next morning, on Sunday, we drove home again, only stopping for a lunch along the way. We got home in the afternoon. Junior was at work but the cats were there to greet us, just like they had greeted him when he had gotten home from his holiday in Portugal 6 days earlier. Our old red cat is outside a lot but did come by for a little attention and all our black cat wants to do is lie on top of one of us every single second of the day.

Time flew by on this holiday and we’re sad the travel part is over but at least we get to be with Junior again and Mr E and I still have one more week off work and yes, the cats are a bonus of being at home again as well.

47 thoughts on “Fin des vacances

  1. That looks like the perfect holiday, Esther. So many things to see, yet also time for relaxation, and all flanked by the stops in Paris. Loved all your photos. It’s a little bit like going on holiday myself 😉. Hope you have an easy settling-back-in!

    Liked by 3 people

      1. Oh, that’s great to hear. Makes it easier to settle back in. And sometimes it is actually quite nice to have a few days off at home, with no pressure to go sightseeing or do all the things that you “need to do” on holiday 😉

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Lovely photos, Esther! Chartres has been on my schedule for some time already. It‘s our local twin town – one Gothic cathedral versus one Roman. 😉 I have one more day at work and on Saturday we‘ll set off to Normandy. Can‘t wait! Wishing you and your family a smooth start!

    Liked by 2 people

            1. aradaghast

              Il faut essayer.
              Il y a et aurait tellement de fautes à corriger dans mes textes anglais que je devrais me contenter d’écrire en langue de Molière. Mais qui parmi vous lira encore mes textes s’ils sont tous écrits en français?

              Liked by 1 person

              1. aradaghast

                Google translation is not a very good friend.
                I have to go through other sites like: Reverso, Linguee and other high level British Schools translation sites too. Then I try to find the best sentence. But often I just write and you can watch choise instead of choice for example.

                Liked by 1 person

              2. I do try to understand but I don’t always take the time to puzzle it through.
                Don’t let that stop you from blogging in French, though! I also read (most of) Lady Butterfly’s posts and they are all in French, so if you start a blog I’d definitely read there too. And you wouldn’t have to use guest blogs anymore.

                Liked by 1 person

              3. aradaghast

                “I admit to putting a lot of French textsthrough Google translate”
                It’s understandable. But if I want to write correctly what I mean, GT is insufficient…

                Liked by 1 person

  3. Esther these photos are so wonderful
    And I feel like a backseat passenger throughout this holiday! I won’t be going anywhere this year except to visit my dad at Cmas so these posts from you and Squirrel and Rachel’s mini trips are so delightful and help ease the pangs of not going myself 😘❤️

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I could see from your pictures and your written words how happy and relaxed you were! I hope next year to take a couple of trips abroad but right now just to Texas in December to see my dad and sister
        Thank you and Squirrel again for sharing your family holiday here and her guest blog. They both have brightened my spirits enormously

        Liked by 2 people

  4. aradaghast

    Tant d’émotions en suivant le parcours de vos vacances dans des lieux proches de mon coeur!
    Vos vacances furent indéniablement distrayantes et reposantes. Bon courage pour la reprise Esther!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. We really did enjoy everything and Mini Me loved going up the Eiffel tower again, now at an age that she will remember it. Meeting you and your family was one of the other highlights of our trip. 🙂


    1. My moules were nice, Mr E’s a little less so. He had some with a new sauce and I think some sort of sausage mixed in (apparently a local specialty) but didn’t like that sausage taste too much (although he normally really likes sausages). It was fine, but mine in white wine sauce and garlic was better. 🙂

      Yes, that 9th century abbey was really special to see.


  5. ah cool you went to see The Machines! they really are so cool, some friends have already been and we should have gone-but hopefully some point in the future!
    lots of lovely pics, looks like you had nice weather too! proper holiday!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, we did. 🙂

      We wouldn’t have gone to The Machines if it hadn’t been for your suggestion, so thank you again for that! 🙂
      I think going to see the exhibit with all the other mechanical animals and figures they have could be special too but we didn’t take the time for that this time around. It was fascinating to look at the creatures that we did see, though.

      Liked by 2 people

  6. it’s probably prejudicial, but I am actually more interested in a comment if it’s not written in English. Like many American academics I have a tortured relationship with French, but I love to be learning more, even bit by bit.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. aradaghast

      Pour détendre l’atmosphère, voici une note humoristique.
      Je vais être obligée de revenir au latin, car la nouvelle dentiste sur ses prescriptions, au milieu d’autres instructions note comme consigne: Nolite glutiam.
      According to her, she is fluent in English, German, Russian, Spanish, Turkish, Romanian … French AND LATIN APPARENTLY.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Do those things survive in France, too? Like I used to get a message from dad’s doctor before his blood tests that said “npo” which meant “nil per os,” and it turns out that nurses say this to patients who ask for food, “remember you’re NPO.” Or when they started using “stat” on medical dramas on TV (which I assume reflected reality?) — now everyone says “stat” to mean “right away”.

        I also heard a story once (possibly apocryphal) about how, during the Cold War, if a physician in a Baltic country had to send a patient to the West for treatment, they’d translate their records into Latin because they didn’t trust their limited English.

        Liked by 2 people

  7. aradaghast

    Studies in Romania behind the East wall could explain it. Yesterday considered old fashion Latin language could become “à la mode” when doctors are now working all other the world.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Pingback: Loki dans tous ses états | LeyArts photos

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