Archive for July, 2012

July 21, 2012

Some news from Bretagne VI

Well sunny times are back in Brittany or Bretagne or Breizh (Breton language), and the crowds are beginning to invade. Plenty of time for locals to partage and enjoy the activities thus. Always welcome sight to see folks in, meaning business is good, jobs are preserve,and all is more the merrier.

Some of the activities coming up are at Hennebont (see my next entry on this town), the mediéval de Hennebont are next July 28 and 29 2012; dont missed them ,they are awesome, and my family will enjoy it too.  www.medievales-hennebont.com

One of the best zoo or animal park in France is here ,nearby Branfere.  Nature and wild life at its closest best. see it at www.branfere.com

you can see two great stone sites, very much revered in this part of France, one is at Petit Mont, at Arzon, and the other is the Gavrinis that needs a boat ride from Lamor Baden. Both sites to follow. www.petit-mont.info  and www.gavrinis.info

At Lorient, the musée de la Compagnie des Indes is having a great exhibition on Japon in Brittany. Lasting until Sept 2 2012. see it all at  http://musee.lorient.fr/Detail_agenda_du_musee.1881+M546b8026709.0.html?&tx_agendasgl_pi1[backid]=1880&tx_agendasgl_pi1[event]=24289

We will have the musicales du Golfe  from Auguts 1-13, 2012 at 10 different towns in the Morbihan department (Séné,Elven,Vannes, ile d’Arz, Surzur, Baden, Saint Avé, Arradon, Plougoumelen and Theix). See the program at www.musicalesdugolfe.com

The jazz festival at Vannes with guest star Yuri Buenaventura will be from JUly 30 to August 4; This is the 33rd edition, more at www.jazzvannes.fr

Shopping sales started from June 27 and continue at shopping Center in Lorient,  the Espace Nayel, alongside the quais port area, see it at www.espacenayel.fr

For fishes in lorient the biggest fishmarket in the area, go to La Maison du Poisson, the house of fishes. You need to buy 3 min per person, they have it read cook for you, tasting areas, and spaces for self service. Open from Tuesdays to Saturdays hours 9h to 13h anbd 15h30 to 19h30, at rond point de la BSM, Rue Fachon, Lorient. www.lamaisondupoisson-lorient.com

For a more dazzling attempt of fun do the speedair parachustist, fast speed parachute flight in tandem with a pro drop from 2000 meters at more than 200 kph or about 120 MPH. you can get info and reservation at www.speedairparachutisme.com

Pour relaxer go to the Spa at Guidel plage about 15 kms from Lorient, open 7 days a week, forme, detente,well being, and vitality all along a nice place along the coast. More in French at http://www.spa-oceane.com/spa-guidel-presentation.php

While above, try one that is highly recommended, for a nice galette or salad while seeing the jet skis, boats,kites and beautiful people , the Le Moulin de la Galette, Le Bas Pouldu, 56520 Guidel  more info at www.moulindelagalette.com

Plenty to have fun in the Morbihan and Brittany in general during this wonderful summer. See you around soon. Cheers.

 

 

 

 

 

July 19, 2012

Some news from France LXXVIIII

Nice sunny day today with the sun hiding sometimes, but finally the family is here, and all begins to take shape with the paperwork. It has been better than expected, done moving many times but always tackle it with respect ::)

To start why not from where I left off, Versailles (lovely never to forget my time there), following the UNESCO designation to France as Inmaterial historical site on gastronomy and wines, the city decided to get one as individual with the food and wine organisation in  France that is setting this up. The other cities vying for the title are  Lyon (Rhône), Beaune and Dijon (Côte-d’Or), Tours (Indre-et-Loire) ,and Rungis-Chevilly-Larue (Val-de-Marne).  And of course, Versailles.

Versailles already has the Potager-du-roi, and then  it welcomes 10 millions visitors per year and  6 only for the chateau.  It is the French city second most known in the world after Paris.  Its strength other than the previously mentioned potager du roi, is the marvelous sublime ,unique  marché Notre-Dame with its  120 stands amongst the most known in the region of Ile-de-France.  You have the farm that provided the food to the chateau in royal times such as la ferme de Gally, that is by Saint-Cyr l’école on the road D307 ,or just at the very end of Chateau property way behind the grand canal . The idea is to open a gastronomic center in the old building of the post office at  avenue de Paris just up from Chateau. Best of luck ,Versaillaises!!!

Paris plage is tomorrow!!! shils wont be there, will run to August 19th  only 800 meters of beach will be available and 1400 meters of promenade,on the rive droite, shorter than last year. The reason,  is to renovated the road along the Seine river ,Voie George Pompidou on the  rive droite . The work will last all summer with traffic closing from July 16. They look forward to enlarge the sidewalks, and make them more accessible to the mobility impaired folks ,and more green space. The next summer the work  will make the bike routes on the rive gauche better.

And now that summer is here, what are the favorites for a picnic à Paris ? Here are my favorites spots.  Along the banks of the Canal Saint-Martin , and Canal de l’Ourq, Also, on the quais de Seinebout of the  l’île Saint-Louis, on the  quai de Bourbon  facing the Hôtel de Ville and the  Pont des Arts (careful with bottles here the police dont like it). The Champ des Mars by the Eiffel Tower.  Parc de la Villette, the Buttes Chaumont , Les Invalides, Parc Monceau, Jardin des Tuileries, Jardin du Luxembourg, and one away from it all  L’île aux cygnes; especially along the Allée des CignesEnjoy sublime Paris.

Then many asking for French courses in Paris, well never taken one as I learned yeaars ago in the USA, and then married a Frenchie so that made the language come up fast,and then came to live in France in 2003 already as a French citizen ,after having visited the country first since 1972 and then with family since 1990 practically everry year. However, this site was recommended by some folks I trust , so I am putting it up here for reference. French Courses in Paris, http://www.french-courses-in-paris.fr/

last minute that is important to me a wine drinker and fan, France had a small dip in its wine production in 2012 to 46,489 millions of hectoliters or 8,7% less than last year.  The different regions of France and their wine production are  Languedoc Roussillon  12,9 millions hL or  -12,4 % from last year and so on, Charentes 8,824 millions hL (-5,1 %).  Aquitaine, 7,085 millions hL (-5,1 %). Provence Alpes Côte d’Azur  4,075 millions hL.  The  Val de Loire  2,959 millions hL estimated. The  Champagne  2,625 millions hL (-8,9 %). Midi Pyrénées 2,562 millions hL (-11,9 %). The  Rhône-Alpes will increase by  14,1 % with  2,198 millions hL. with much of it related to the Beaujolais. Alsace, 1,171 millions hL  (-1 %). Bourgogne  1,601 millions hL (-4,1 %). The Corse  345 000 hl  (+6,8 %).

Short and sassy this time, await my weekend, the first one with the family here, so a different travel as we will also seeing areas for a later house purchase. Have a great day and rest of week everyone. Cheers

July 5, 2012

Some news from Bretagne V

Its started as a rainy day and now its mixed n Auray, just back from work. At least tomorrow its Friday and the weekend is upon us. My last before the move from Versailles.

There is a great event coming up in Vannes, July 30th to August 4th 2012. The 33RD edition of Jazz à Vannes. We will have Yuri Buenaventura ,Madeleine Peyroux, Kyle Eastwood band,Tim Willis and the End, Marcus Miller a huge concert all over the city with food stands all day long. Tickets are 35€ adults ,discount for students and children, and easy access from paris montparnasse to Vannes and then 5 minutes walk to the center of it all; Jardins de Limur entry by rue des tribunaux, doors open 30 mins before concert. webpage here http://www.jazzavannes.fr/

Then,this is summer in the Morbihan dept 56 where I live now. Come eat the  oysters of Bretagne, just marvelous rich I try them good, see them here www.huitres-de-bretagne.com  and for something different see the organ play of the Cathedral of Vannes from July 23 to August 14 free admission at 20h45 (8:45 pm).

See the expo at Chateau de Rohan in Pontivy, ROL 2012 100 sculptures, until september 16 2012.http://www.morbihan.com/chateau-des-rohan/pontivy/tabid/7430/offreid/31171431-8da0-4a40-922b-769f63b62825/detail-visites.aspx

Do a medieval festival at the Festival Mediéval de Josselin on July 14 2012, and done every year on the Fête Nationale; http://www.medieval-josselin.com/

To discover one of FRance and the world best natural beauty products visit La Gacilly and Yves Rocher, you can see the jardin botanique, the Vegetarium, and stay at the eco hotel La Grée des Landes. http://www.yves-rocher.fr/control/com/fr/aventure/la_gacilly/

The biggest religious pelerigragne in Brittany and second only to Lourdes in France is coming near me at Sainte-Anne d’Auray. The patron saint of Breton,mother of Mary,grandmother of Jesus. the Grand Pardon, at July 25-26 2012. www.sainteanne-sanctuaire.com

How about visiting a submarine base from WWII at Lorient, and now a museum ,La Flore,, you really go inside! details in English here http://www.la-flore.fr/?langue=en

And one of the best zoos around,  Parc animalier de Branféré ,where the birds spectacle in front of the castle from early 18C is done. See pelicans,voltures, falcons, parroquet, and others in an aerial dance. See the Parcabout, where you can see the animals below just 2 to 8 meters high and observed the African plains with giraffes, zebras ,etc. You need a car, or taxi from train station in Vannes about 35 kms. Car take the voie express or fast road, N165 direction nantes and get off at exit Le Guerno ,there take the road D 139, direction Questembert, parking is free. Open every day from February 11 to November 7  2012. admission for all is 17€ adults. reductions for the rest. There is safari restaurant all Bio and local products, and boutique on site. webpage in French, http://www.branfere.com/visite-parc-animalier-botanique-2-146.html

Cheers !!!

 

July 4, 2012

Some news from France LXXVIII

On a gray rainy day in Brittany I write to you about France, and of course Paris too, hehehe!!! Well , I will be in Versailles next week and visiting Paris too as finally my permanent move here will be done. Got my moving truck reserve, and the gang is ready to load. Lots of memories in Versailles, they will never be forgotten and only 3+ hours by train and 5,5 hrs by car it will be without saying that I will be back !!)

Now let talk about the CDG and Orly Paris airports, you know the ones, they have a site ,even translated to English and other places like CDGEasy or facile but people always keep asking about things there…. CDG 1 as in terminal even has a bank by the TGV level and wifi coverage, ATM machines and post office, childrens area on the departure hallways with PS3 games,even a pharmacy by the CDGVal level. Restaurants from Brioche Dorée to caffe  Ritazza, McDonalds (lol!!),and Starbucks (oh nooo them too!) past customs you have La Terrase.

CDG2 or terminal 2 is huge. you hve exchange bureau,ATM machines, post office,WIFI services, Childrens areas, 2A,2C departure levels. You have scales to weight your bags or you! (dont eat too mmuch in France lol!!) Terminal A by porte 9; Terminal B by porte 10, Terminal C by porte 6 and near porte 4P441 entry to gare TGV trains. pharmacy, and plenty of restaurants my favorites are Les Marchés de Paris, CAfé Select,  at terminal E there is Restaurant Paul, Columbus cafe,and restaurant maxim’s.

To get from CDG to Paris the usual train RER B, every 12 minutes,and from 4h56 to 23h40 cost is about 9 euros something, never take it, its crowded and even if underground goes by not so good areas of the north of Paris.  Then, there is the bus, Roissybus, is great leaves you off at corner of rue Auber and rue Scribe near the Opera, every 20 minutes, from 5h45 to 23h cost is about 14 euros, leaves CDG 1 arrivals porte 8, T2A and 2C porte A9, 2B and 2D porte D11, 2E and F, porte 5 galerie connector and TE arrivals.

If you happened to be at night no problems the owls will get you in that is the Noctilien, from 0h30 to 5h30, never taken it, but it drops off at Chatelet, gare de Lyon, gare montparnasse, gare de l’Est,gare du nord,and gare Saint Lazare train stations.  www.noctilien.fr   Taxi are easy and convenience at a price, you figure paying about 50 Euros to get you central Paris. They are metered and the best names are Alpha-Taxis, Les taxis bleus,Taxi G7,and Taxis 7000. They have webpages so check them out,you can even book then ahead.

My favorite is by car ho ho ho, yes love it ,driving its a thrill if you learned to drive in NYC you can do it anywhere lol!  You get into the city by the A1 at porte de la Chapelle, A3 by the porte de Bagnolet, and then A1 on the right lane; parking in the airport is available of course, and even have a pre book service that I use very convenient to park close to the terminals preferential spaces. http://www.aeroportsdeparis.fr/ADP/en-GB/Passagers/Access-maps-car-parks/Paris-CDG/Car-parks/Car-park-maps-rates/maps-and-rates-of-car-parks-at-paris-charles-de-gaulle.htm

Then you have the shopping, well so many stores, and prices dont know, I get nothing here as I live here, but duty free are usually good bargains.  Here is the shopping page at official webpage http://www.aeroportsdeparis.fr/ADP/en-GB/Passagers/shops-services/

Orly took it once, and the first time I came to France by plane was 1990 (1972 the very first time was by train from Madrid). they have wifi access, public info at porte G arrivals 1, post office, SNCF train counters,and RATP counters for metro bus etc as well. ATM at ground floor Porte G, and level 1,hall B near gate 20. I have done Paul for coffees here. You get to Paris (Orly is not neither is CDG) by the train RER B and then OrlyVal correspondance at Antony for the ouest /west or sud/south terminals. To come back you stop at Orly Sud, orlyval exit or sortie K, Orly OUest or west, exit or sortie A at departure level. every 4-8 minutes. You also can make on the RER C and navette bus. you make correspondance at pont de Rungis,then bus to ouest or sud terminal. You have a bus OrlyBus from Place Denfert-Rochereau in front of gare RER, every 15-20 minutes, you leave from Orly Sud at sortie H and Orly Ouest at arrival level, porte D,quai B. they run pretty much from 6h to 23h30.

Taxis there are Alpha-Taxis, Taxi Bleus,Taxi G7,and TAxi 7000 as well. By car and this is how I took my only flight out of there, took my father to visit sister in Florida, USA ,its take the A6 by the porte d’Orleans in Paris marked A6a, or by the porte de Gentilly A6b, then the A105 all the way to airport. Parkings have navettes that brings you to terminals

If you need to connect from Orly airport to CDG airport, take the RER B to Antony, then OrlyVal.

Now if you have a modern passport French that is you can do the security line quicker, many countries have it, as well as USA. Here in France its call the Parafe, here is the site with info in English too, http://www.parafe.gouv.fr/en/

Musée Rodin until march 2013, great expo on marble, terracotas, and plasters. http://www.musee-rodin.fr/fr/exposition/rodin-la-chair-le-marbre/

A great cozy place to eat in Paris, known to business circles but will pass on to all my readers, L’Arc Paris, 12 rue de Presbourg, just behind the Arc de Triomphe, a terrace marble overlooking the great monument, menus at around 70 euros, classic chic trés parisien, webpage http://larc-paris.com/

Another jewel if into beef as I am , is the Classico Argentino ,yes an Argentinian restaurant with the best beef from the Pampas at a grand location. 217 ave du Faubourg-Saint-Antoine, empanadas from four euros and ice creams from 7-9 euros. you will love the beef, see it at http://www.clasico-argentino.com/fr/les-restaurants/paris-XI

And if need to stay ,why not a boutique hotel with class and parisien panach, at Hotel Daniel, 6-8 ure Fréderic Bastiat; lovely area and great still like Paris hotel, try it, webpage http://www.hoteldanielparis.com/

And for the road or the sitting is the CRAZY HORSE PARIS, with new shows very feminin, by one of my fab areas in Paris, ave George V, see it to believe, right in the center of it all; http://www.lecrazyhorseparis.com/en/spectacle-cabaret-desir-en/

Until next time, and should be this weekend from Breton lands, and then next week Versailles/Paris. Salut  AND HAPPY 4TH OF JULY TO ALL MY AMERICANS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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