Lannion, encore une fois

Lannion Travel Blog

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Andre and Louise keep a nice garden in the front of the house and a small "kitchen" garden with fresh veggies in the back yard.

I wasn't looking forward to the bag drag this morning as we packed our suitcases for departure.  We had used the company, Airport Connection, for our mode of transport from CDG to Paris and although it was convenient and better than using the Metro, it cost about 56 Euros (including tip) for the journey.  As luck would have it there was a stop for, Les Cars Air France, just outside the door of our hotel.

This large passenger bus, operated by Air France, cost only 16 Euros each for the one way trip back to the airport and we didn't even have to tip the driver.  Normally, we aren't this mercenary but since we would be away from home for over a month, we wanted to save money where we could.

Our bedroom at Le Grand Chene

The bus departed every thirty minutes for Charles de Gaulle airport, where we would be picking up our rental car for the five and a half hour drive to Lannion.  We could have taken a flight between the two cities but decided it would be much more pleasant to see the French countryside in the bloom of Spring.

With our handy GPS in place, Mark maneuvered our little Peugeot through the bumper to bumper traffic as we made our way back through Paris.  Mark decided that driving through Paris was about as frustrating as driving through London, except there is no charge to drive through the city limits of Paris (yet).

As the city melted away,  the rich colors of the French countryside came into view as bright patches of green, yellow and red and deep brown.

The sitting room/kitchen area
  Freshly plowed fields competed with rows of newly sprouted crops and flowering hedges.  The sweet perfume of the brilliant yellow rape fields flooded the car as soon as I lowered my window to breathe in its aroma.  These same fields bloom throughout the English Midlands in the Spring and I used to love to drive the narrow roads between the fields, with windows down, in order to bathe in its scent.

Small stone farmhouses, dotting the idyllic landscape, began to whiz by at a quicker pace as Mark pushed the gas pedal past the 110km speed limit.  Beep....beep.....beep......  the tiny alarm persisted as Mark began mumbling under his breath......beep.....beep.....beep..........  Oh, I'd forgotten about this innovative system built into the newer French cars, which notifies you if you are going past the posted speed limit.

Another view of the microwave tucked away in the cupboard.
  We really weren't going as fast as it would appear since 110km is only approx 70mph but the annoying alarm persisted.   Everyone else was whizzing past us without regard to the posted limit. Maybe they were all driving the old "deux chevaux" of the 70's which were way outside the boundries of technological progress. 

As Mark's patience wore thinner,  our own GPS joined in the carcophony of sounds by adding an occasional alarm when radar cameras were posted on the roadside. Not even the music from the English "Heartbeat" soundtrack which we'd recorded on CD before leaving home, could drown out the continual  .....beep......beep.......beep.........boop.....boop.....boop of the various alarms.    I heard Mark mumble something about "pulling over to disconnect the Peugeot's alarm system", which no doubt he could have done, had I not given him "the Look" that passes between all husbands and wives at one time or another.

Our ensuite bathroom with the heated towel rail in the corner.
   Well timed coffee breaks and bathroom stops  broke the tension occasionally and before we knew it, we were rolling into familiar territory, the town of Lannion, on the Pink Granite Coast of western France.

Our good friends, Andre and Louise,  proprietors of the Chambre d'hote,  Le Grand Chene, would once again be our hosts during our long stay.  This was our second time this year to stay the month, with the Stervinous, and it probably wouldn't be the last in 2009.   Andre and Daisy (their dog) were on hand to greet us.  As we were expected a little later than our actual arrival, Louise was taking a walk with a neighborhood friend but would soon be putting together a "small snack" of gourmet proportions once we had settled into our appartment.

Our last two visits here have placed us within the "big house" in a room of large proportion, nicely appointed with the obligatory tea pot and hot drinks so essential to the well being of a British gentleman and his Anglosized, American wife.  For this visit, we found the attached appartment available which provided even more ammenities with the addition of a microwave/convection oven, dishes, glasswear, etc....  We also had our own ensuite bathroom with oversized skylight window to match one of the same in the bedroom.  Since we have a separate entrance to our little nest we were less likely to cause disruption with our comings and goings.  Within the garage, we had access to the large refrigerator, where we could keep our grocery items.  The washer, dryer and sink, in the utility room, were also at our disposal when needed.    We were very much at home here.  The only things missing were our two cats, Candy and Georgia, who were being well looked after by our friend, Teddi, back in Arizona.

Once we had unpacked our bags and relaxed a bit, we were invited to partake of a welcome meal and conversation with our hosts downstairs.  As before, Louise served a delicious meal of fresh vegetables, tomatoes, asparagus, small potatoes, etc, all laid out in a circular fashion on the plate with a flakey baked pastry in the center which was filled with warm goat cheese and gathered up to look like a peddler's sack, tied with what looked like a sprig of chives.  I was doing my usual "dance" in my chair which always occurs when I'm eating a particularly tasty meal.

 To make our first meal even more special, we broke into the box of wine that our friends, Jean-Marc and Kristi Espinasse, had sent us from their organic vineyard, Rouge-Bleu. I don't know if it was the combination of the full bodied, rich taste of the "Mistral" red, along with the follow up bottle of  Rouge-Bleu Rose that put the joie back in our vivre but by the time we ate Louise's flaming "Omelet Norvegianne" (the French version of Baked Alaska) we were indeed happy that we only had a short walk back "home".

Petra2111 says:
Great blog Sandy!!
Posted on: Jun 01, 2009
olsalty says:
Good writing Sandy, as usual of course. Now, on to the next blog...
Posted on: May 17, 2009
Africancrab says:
awesome blog, ha-ha! I feel like I was on the trip with you. I can't wait to hear what happens on this leg of your trip. Now I wish I had completed my French course when I was able to 12 years ago :)
Posted on: May 17, 2009
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Andre and Louise keep a nice garde…
Andre and Louise keep a nice gard…
Our bedroom at Le Grand Chene
Our bedroom at Le Grand Chene
The sitting room/kitchen area
The sitting room/kitchen area
Another view of the microwave tuck…
Another view of the microwave tuc…
Our ensuite bathroom with the heat…
Our ensuite bathroom with the hea…
photo by: azsalsa