Posts tagged ‘France’

June 26, 2017

Again the Tour de France 104th edition

And we are just around the corner of the next tour de France bicycle race.  The next will be the 104th Edition, and will be running from Saturday July 1st to Sunday July 23rd in 21 stages over 3540 kms.

The previous one I have in my blog was in 2015 when it passed just next to my employer near Vannes in the Morbihan Breton; more of it here:

Some of the teams already announced for this year’s edition are: (country abbrev in French)

AG2R La Mondiale: Jan Bakelants (BEL), Romain Bardet (FRA), Axel Domont (FRA), Mathias Frank (SUI), Ben Gastauer (LUX), Cyril Gautier (FRA), Pierre Latour (FRA), Oliver Naesen (BEL), Alexis Vuillermoz (FRA)

BMC Racing Team: Damiano Caruso (ITA), Stefan Küng (SUI), Alessandro De Marchi (ITA), Amaël Moinard (FRA), Richie Porte (AUS), Nicolas Roche(IRL), Michael Schär (SUI), Greg Van Avermaet (BEL), Danilo Wyss (SUI).

Bora – Hansgrohe :Maciej Bodnar (POL), Emanuel Buchmann (ALL), Marcus Burghardt (ALL), Rafal Majka (POL), Jay McCarthy (AUS), Pawel Poljanski (POL), Juraj Sagan(SVQ), Peter Sagan (SVQ), Rudi Selig (ALL).

Cofidis: Nacer Bouhanni (FRA), Dimitri Claeys (BEL), Christophe Laporte (FRA), Cyril Lemoine (FRA), Luis Angel Maté (ESP), Daniel Navarro (ESP), Florian Sénéchal (FRA), Julien Simon (FRA), Geoffrey Soupe (FRA).

Dimension Data: Edvald Boassen Hagen (NOR), Mark Cavendish (GBR), Stephen Cummings (GBR), Bernhart Eisel (AUT), Reinardt Janse van Rensburg (AFS), Serge Pauwels (BEL), Mark Renshaw (AUS), Scott Thwaites (GBR), Jaco Venter (AFS).

Direct Energie: Thomas Boudat (FRA), Lilian Calmejane (FRA), Sylvain Chavanel (FRA), Yohann Gène (FRA), Adrien Petit (FRA), Perrig Quéméneur (FRA), Romain Sicard (FRA), Angelo Tulik (FRA), Thomas Voeckler (FRA).

Katusha-Alpecin: Marco Haller (AUT), Reto Hollenstein (SUI), Robert Kiserlovski (CRO), Alexander Kristoff (NOR), Maurits Lammertink (NED), Tiago Machado (POR), Tony Martin (GER), Nils Politt (GER), Rick Zabel (GER).

Orica-Scott: Michael Albasini (SUI), Esteban Chaves (COL), Luke Durbridge (AUS), Mathew Hayman (AUS), Damien Howson (AUS), Daryl Impey (AFS), Jens Keulekeire (BEL), Roman Kreuziger (RTC), Simon Yates (GBR).

Sky: Chris Froome (GBR), Sergio Henao (COL), Vasil Kiryienka (BLR), Christian Knees (ALL), Michal Kwiatkowski (POL), Mikel Landa (ESP), Mikel Nieve (ESP), Luke Rowe (GBR), Geraint Thomas (GBR).

Team Sunweb: Nikias Arndt (ALL), Warren Barguil (FRA), Roy Curvers (HOL), Michael Matthews (AUS), Simon Geschke (ALL), Ramon Sinkeldam (HOL), Laurens Ten Dam (HOL), Albert Timmer (HOL), Mike Teunissen (HOL).

Trek-Segafredo; André Cardoso (POR), Alberto Contador(ESP), John Degenkolb (ALL), Fabio Felline (ITA), Michael Gogl (AUT), Markel Irizar (ESP), Koen de Kort (HOL), Bauke MOLLEMA (HOL) , Jarlinson Pantano (COL).

UAE – Team Emirates: Darwin Atapuma (COL), Matteo Bono (ITA), Kristijan Durasek (CRO), Vegard Stake Laengen (NOR), Marco Marcato (ITA), Manuele Mori (ITA), Louis Meintjes (AFS), Ben Swift (GBR), Diego Ulissi (ITA).

Wanty – Groupe Gobert: Frederik Backaert (BEL), Thomas Degand (BEL), Guillaume Martin (FRA), Marco Minaard (NED),Yoann Offredo (FRA), Andrea Pasqualon (ITA), Dion Smith (NZL), Guillaume Van Keirlsbuck (BEL), Pieter Vanspeybrouck (BEL).

The official site to watch it live is here in English:

Notice this year the race will begin in Dusseldorf Germany !! hey a town I have visited!!! Here was my post on the city:

It will ,also, past by Belgium and Luxembourg!

Then stage 7 from Troyes to Nuits-Saint-Georges should be sublime, also, stage 10 Périgueux to Bergerac wow! Stages 11-12 around Pau! and Stage 16 Le Puy-en-Vélay to Romans-sur-Isére, and of course the finish in Paris.

Some schedules to watch on TV is here in English:

And here is a video in 3D of the route of the 104th edition of the Tour de France!!


See on the roads folks, enjoy it and happy end of june 2017. Cheers

June 24, 2017

Pointe du Raz in pays Bigouden; Finistére Breton!

Today was a hectic day and lots of things to do so done tonite and rest tomorrow. However, the day was cloudy cooler nicer to go out with temps in the 15C  to 22C this is like less than 75F all day. The sun did came out a bit later in the day but while we were where we were going was not. Anyway this is Brittany and we went next door to the Finistére dept 29.

We had lots of errands to do and started in Vannes picking up my retouch jean from Armand Thiery; then going to V&B to pick some more Belgian and German beers in Auray. Both of which I have written extensively in previous posts. We finally headed for Finistére.

Getting back on the N165 passing the ria river of Auray over the  Kerplouz bridge we headed to our destination by taken the D784 just after Quimper direction Audierne.

We headed for Pouldreuzic in the pays Bigouden to get to the boutique factory of Hénaff (founded in 1907) the great Breton deli with all its delicacies. This was wonderful and we loaded up on more than 130€ shopping on cans from duck mousse to rabbit, deer, wild pigs, tuna, hams,  in different blends as well as cider (130 m2 of space). The store has a museum 3€ admission but it was closed. It is a nice compact store with cold cuts pates on the right and souvenirs , fisheries and home deco items on the left side.  The factory is just around the corner and they have a full service center for the community . You have a salon de thé and garden playground next door with picnic tables. The opening hours varied in low and high season; right now is high season. More here:

Once we did our shopping in Pouldreuzic town, we had some time left so we headed forward to the Pointe du Raz, the furthermost point in the peninsula passing towns like Landudec, Plozévet, and Plouhinec with nice churches and the great harbor of Audierne.

The Church of Saint Démet in Plozévet is nice. It has elements of the 12C and built in the 14C with later renovations. The town of Plozévet is at the crossing of the roads D784 and D2 near the coast and west of  Quimper. More in French on the town go to “La Commune” on top row and on bottom go for “Le Patrimoine Communal de Plozévet.”

The Church Sainte Anne in Landudec is also nice. Built with donations from 1528 to 1540 and rebuilt in 1904.  The town is unique finding itself between the Pays Glazik , and the Cap-Sizun, itselves between the Pays Bigouden ,and the Pen Sardinn. A bit more here in French:

The Church of Saint Winoc in Plouhinec is nice. Built between the 16C and 18C even if many elements are found from the 15C.  These were seeing passing on our way to final destination in Pouldreuzic or Pointe du Raz. Bit more on the Church in French here:

We finally reach Pointe du Raz, in the Cap Sizun, at the westernmost point in the peninsula seeing the vast atlantic ocean and the lighthouses of the island of Sein. The view here is magnificent over the vast ocean and you are on a cliff with rocky stony footpath leading you to the edge!  Parking starts from 6,50€ and there is plenty of shops and restos on the point to keep it a day. You see the grandeur of the panorama on the Raz de Sein very famous by seamen with their lighthouses of the Vieille, and the Tévennec, as well as the fascinating island of  île de Sein. More here on the grand sites of France in French:

And from the Finistére tourism office in English:

A place not to miss if coming to Brittany at least arrive to see it and have lunch on site great combi.

We did passed by the harbor beach town of Audierne, this is very picturesque like a post card and great ambiance along the waterfront. The tourist office will tell you more, I love the town and will be back in the Pays Capiste ,just before the Le Pointe du Raz.

In the above link you can find more of the Pointe du Raz and Cap Sizun as well as the île de Sein.  A lovely ride coming back late to get to my car wash at E Leclerc Vannes and the grocery shopping for other stuff there , finally reaching home pretty late. Sunday will be to rest lol!

Enjoy your weekend and Sunday, until next time ,and thanks for reading my blog; cheers.

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June 21, 2017

Some news from France CLVIIII

And I am back in milder weather at last. Today got up to 30C only…. and sunny. We had an open air picnic in our employer’s vast park (work in  a castle in ruins with a vast modern buildings in the forest).  So, it is time to tell you more about my belle France and especially eternal Paris.

Right off the bat, today is 36th Fête de la Musique or music festival all over France; its a tradition that is taken roots really fast.

Over in Paris; the biggest and all over, we used to have even in the metro riding lol! Now the nicest one me think is by the Palais Royal. Starting at 14h the orchestra of the school of Buissonnets of Rueil-Malmaison will kick off the day. 16-17h Vilorio a former singer and trompist of metal fusion that mixes in the pop, funk, and Latin. Then ,the group Midnight  Colors, with the Camerounaise Nelly W and the  pianist composer Arnaud Fournier around jazz and blues. Continuing at 18-19h you will see “KaraRocké” a karaoke version XXL with volunteers going on stage to take over the songs of rock, of various artists. By 20h the Belgian singer Coely with Rap, and hip-hop as well as soul and R’nB. At 21h the batterist Tony Allen of Nigeria one of the pioneers of the afrobeat mixing traditional Nigerian music with jazz, funk etc. He has worked with Charlotte Gainsbourg here in France already.  You will hear the 20syl of Nantes with the electronic touch and the American rapper Mr J Medeiros from 22h. Lastly, the duo AllttA will close out the night.  More in English here:

Moving over to my beloved Versailles , you will have electro music at the Place de l’Europe with the group Ostud & Soundmotion ,and the pop rock of the 50’s will be by the Place des Manéges. Several groups will be around town  such as by the Cathédrale Saint-Louis, Cour des Senteurs, Cour de la Grande Ecurie , and the jardin des Etangs Gobert. More in French here:

And of course my nice Pluvigner, will have it by the  Place Saint-Michel  from 21h30 -23h tonite with the local group Dan Ar Draz and Clarisse Lavanant, and at the Place du Marché from 23h to 01h the presentation of the group YP’s with pop.rock music and later a huge Breton party or Fest-noz with the group Arvest to close the party. More in French here:

Dealing also with delights and food, some of the best summer tables in Paris all tried by yours truly.

Balagan, 9 rue d’Alger (1st) Tel +33 (0) 1 40 20 72 14; everyday more here:

Roberta, 5bis rue La Vieuville (18st) Tel +33 (0) 1 42 59 33 32 , everyday. more here.

Polissons, 35 rue Ramey (18) tel +33 (0) 6 46 63 57 59 everyday except Sundays. more here:

Maison Maison, facing the 16 quai du Louvre (1st) no tel, open everyday. More here:

The roofstop of Monsieur Mouche, port de la Conférence, pont de l’Alma (8th) ; more in Facebook here:

Racines des Prés, 1 rue de Gribeauval (7th) tel +33 (0) 1 45 48 14 16, everyday except Saturdays only lunch and Sundays all day. More here:

Détour, 15 rue de la Tour-des-Dames (9th) tel +33 (0) 1 45 26 21 48 everyday except Sundays and Mondays. More here:

Crabe Royal 19 place de la Madeleine (8) tel +33 (0) 1 81 69 96 70; everyday except Sundays. More here:

Drugstore Publicis, 133 avenue des Champs-Elysées (8) tel +33 (0) 1 44 43 75 07; more here:

Sea Bar Ostrea, 60 rue de l’Arbre-Sec (1st) tel +33 (0) 1 85 81 11 11  ;only evenings Closed Sundays and Mondays. More here:

A historic icon of Paris is ready to open on July 5th, on the Place de la Concorde, this is the Hotel de Crillon. An architecture marvel of the 18C done by the Ange-Jacques Gabriel a symbol of luxury French style is to open again after extensive renovations.  It will be managed by the group Rosewood Hotels and Resorts with Saudi ownerwhip; this the former residence of the counts of Crillon that was turned into a hotel or Hotel des Voyageurs in 1909. It will have 124 rooms vs 147 before with 33 suites, 10 suites Signature and done by the best in the business such as Karl Lagerfeld for the decorations. Aline d’Amman the artistic director will be invited with 3 decorators designers such as Tristan Auer, Chahan Minassian and Cyril Vergniol (previously collaborated with Alberto Pinto). It will have a hair saloon and brasserie a spa and pool done by the arts decoratif experts of Minassian. And the kitchen by Christopher Hache previously experiences at Briffard, Senderens, Frecho, etc. Hôtel de Crillon 10 place de la Concorde (8) tel +33 (0) 1 44 71 15 00. More here:

There is a new exposition at the Cité des Sciences et de l’Industrie, . until January 14, 2018. Inspirations, hommage by artists to great men of our times with their productions. From Darwin to Jackson Pollock appearing in L’ordre des Pierres (2007) Orson Welles and Michel-Ange in Par des temps incertains (2001) and many more to discover. Valerian et Laureline en mission pour la Cité. 30 avenue Corentin-Cariou (19) open every day except Mondays from 10h to 18h and Sundays from 10h to 19h. admission 9€-12€:more here:

Here all about it here Paris mayor is at it again!!! From tomorrow Thursday June 22nd there will be ticket to purchase for 3,80€ for all polluting modes of transport coming into Paris; this is by the regional govt more here:

Then, the city of Paris on October 1st 2017 Paris will be completely traffic free with only the boulevard périphérique , the  bois de Boulogne, and of  Vincennes open to traffic. More in French from the city here:

Something wonderful in Seine-et-Marne, at Provins back again. The lights, the flamboyant decorations, the banners and flags resembling the middle ages are back June 24 and 25 weekend.  These are the médiévales de Provins. Costumes and spectacles from the period come to meet Dame Garance and her husband Enguerrand that will explain the fabrication of pigments on cloths. Saturday the evenings will be high in colors with a Bal, concert of medieval music and to close the 34th edition, an illumination at 22h and spectacle of fireworks at 22h30. The festivities will be Saturday from 10h to 22h30 and Sunday from 10h to 17h30. admission is 11€ and 15€ for the two days.More info at

And something to celebrate the coming to Versailles of the tsar  Peter the Great of Russia we have many things going on in my old dept 78 Yvelines. From the La Machine de Marly to Marly-le-Roi, the Datcha of Russian writer  Ivan Tourgueniev at Bougival, the Skit du Saint-Esprit at Mesnil-Saint-Denis where the hermitage founded by orthodox monks is one of the emblematic sites of Russia in the department . For this occasion there is an exposition at different sites such as Bougival, Versailles, Marly-le-Roi, Saint-Arnoult-en-Yvelines, Le Mesnil-Saint-Denis, and Rueil-Malmaison (dept Hauts-de-Seine 92)  to discover the great Russian personalities of the time from the tsar to artists, writers etc that have marked the history of Bougival , and the surrounding towns. More info at email: or tel +33 (0) 1 39 69 21 23.  More here and do print the pdf file communiqué de presse:

Enjoy the end of week as always looking forward to that weekend.  Enjoy the music y’all, Cheers

PS. Do not want to wait to next post because this is wonderful and just going on in Paris; La Fête Foraine des Tuileries; right in the jardin des tuileries; going on now until August 27th. You have over 60 attractions with 20 carrousels of wooden horses, ice skating, crazy cars, phantom trains, shooting galleries, fishing, trampoline, toboggan, climbing, the great wheel is the most popular. It is open every day from 11h to 23h45 in the week and from 11h to 00h45 Fridays, Saturdays, and eves of Holidays. More in the Paris tourist office in English here:





June 18, 2017

Father’s Day in Bretagne/Brittany, something to celebrate!

Today,it’s that time again, Father’s Day in France. I am still very lucky to have mine alive at 82,not so lucky with my Mom who passed away in 2007 here in France.

The last time we celebrated Father’s day in 2015 and took him to the very nice Restaurant Le Gavroche in Vannes; I wrote about it here:

This year we have done the same and gone back to the same restaurant. Here is their webpage:

Ratings are good here 3,5 out of 5 in Yelp(one of my recommended sites in my blogroll below main page) :

The restaurant is in the neighborhood of Saint Patern at 17 Rue de la Fontaine,in Vannes. Taking the N165 expressway and go out at the Vannes Centre road D767; past the traffic circle of Pompidou and continue on Avenue Georges Pompidou , take slightly right to ge on avenue Jean Monnet on next traffic circle take left towards Rue Madame Lagarde which will become Boulevard de la Paix , here take a quick right into Rue de la Fontaine to the restaurant on your right hand side just before the Church of Saint Patern on your left. However, the best for parking is to continue onto Rue du Maréchal Leclerc and park along the ramparts of the old castle ruins facing the gardens of the Garonne.

The menu for 17,90€ included for me a fish soup for entrée, piece of butcher steak in pepper sauce, potatoes, pumpkin purée, dessert of the day a baba cake of coconut and passion fruit in caramel colis, all down with a bottle of La Gardiere 2016 St Nicolas de Bourgueil in the Loire, irish coffee, coca cola for my father and the house digestif blend of rum and vanilla liquor all for 22,95€ per person ,not bad. Happy Father’s Day.

I did started my day voting in my congressional or legislative second round election in my town of Pluvigner; very light again and expected a very low turnout. Usuallly dissatisfied with the political spectrum and the new president governing with 50% of voters…. Time will tell.

Back to Vannes, we did our usual walk and saw a wonderful Breton service at the Church of Saint Patern, the oldest in Vannes. Many beautiful wooden houses and the ramparts of Vannes with its wonderful Constable tower , Gate or Porte Prison, The regional govt building or prefecture gardens are lovely, and Garonne garden. Always a magical place to be even in 32C weather.

My father kept up walking and had a wonderful dinner, ate it all! very happy to get him out of the house and spent some time with him on our busy lives. He really enjoy it and was very happy with the outing so Father’s day done well.

We arrive home in the heat by 15h or 3PM and now relaxing waiting for another week of heat as temps are call to be in the early 30C here or near 90F for the rest of the week.

You have a wonderful Sunday and a great Father’s Day if celebrating it. Keep cool, and happy travels;Cheers.

ps. Enjoy the photos.

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June 17, 2017

Quiberon is awesome and it’s our backyard !!!

One more time to Quiberon. Looking back ,I have already 10 posts entries in my blog on it, possibly more than any other single location and for good reason. This is awesome playground just south of me.

Today was hot, temps at 30C or 88F and sunny bright some wind, just a regular summer day before summer. The folks were turn towards the beaches and traffic going there was heavy ,especially from 14H or 2PM onwards.

We decided that after our family errands we will head there for a nice brunch late lunch on a hot Saturday afternoon. This we did, and headed easily with little traffic towards the center of Quiberon, this is the Place Hoche just before hitting the Grande Plage or big beach and just after place du Varquez, and the site of the market on Saturday mornings.

The parking is very nice if arrive early with 210 spaces metered parking, and just walks to the beach and the resto/bars in and around the square and Esplanade or big promenade after the parking Varquez and just before the Place du Varquez.

Here, you have the Café de l’Esplanade Hoche, and Remy the owner, always pleasant helpful talkative and the drinks and snacks just great for a wonderful afternoon. Later on in the evening they stay open until 2-3 AM and the crowds gets more lively. We go with the family so we stay to go in the afternoons more quiet and more time to talk.

We had our usual pate in Mousse de Canard à l’orange (duck in orange ) and Patê de Lapin aux pruneaux (rabbit in prunes) ,and Terrine de Canard au miel (duck with honey), saucisson comte, (comte cheese sausage) ,and of course our local beer 8,5% Belzebuth  (a meaning from the New Testament of the head of demons) , here is just a wonderful Celtic/Breton beer blonde. Wonderful mild houblon taste just melts in your mouth, more on it here, beware of the Devil. Brasserie Grain d’Orge, 185 rue Léo Lagrange, 59500;Douai, Hauts de France region. More here:

The tourist office on it is here in French:é

And this is the merchant’s site of Quiberon:

The site in Facebook is here:

It is a fun place, and good quality price ratio, a must for us when stopping in Quiberon ,which is often ::) We live just 45 minutes by car and this is a peninsula with several beaches along the way and the wonderful Wild Coast or Côte Sauvage I have detailed earlier on my blog. Highly recommended if in the area or just come it will be worth it.

Stay cool, drink liquids (any ::)) and have a blast summer times are here again. Cheers

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June 14, 2017

Some news from France CLVIII

Well here I am again and temps in the glorious 32C or about 90F sunny hot this is Summer already.  And already almost half way in June moving to vacation time next month and August, the big one lol!

Some info on attendance on the museums of our World, some paid and some free, the most visited according to this organisation TEA/AECOM Theme Index and Museum Index are:

June 11, 2017

Revisiting the Côte Sauvage, the wild coast of Quiberon

This wonderful peninsula of Quiberon and its wild coast or côte sauvage is just about 40 minutes by car south from my house; and we love it. Even if with so much to see, we should come here more often. The last time wrote on the wild coast in my blog was in 2014 shamefully admitted.

This Sunday is special day in France as it is the first round of legislative elections to elect our congress and of course , I voted in my district 6 by 11h30 this morning.  The second round and definite one will be held next Sunday June 18, which is ,also, Father’s Day in France ! More on the elections here:

Afterward, we headed for the Quiberon peninsula along the D768. There was a block on Portivy the entrance to the wild coast with some kind of bicycle race so we move on to Saint Pierre de Quiberon and cut off into the wild coast there. Signs are well posted as côte sauvage or wild coast.

The views here of the ocean and the force of the waves hitting the rock is impressive and the fresh sea air wonderful. It started out as a bit rainy and cloudy and finish very warm and sunny with all kinds of ocean activities going on from kites to surfing ,boating and rock climbing.

For a general view the designation wild coast or côte sauvage is for tourist purposes given by the French government to areas in the regions  Bretagne (mine), Pays de la Loire, and Poitou-Charentes. Some of the other specifics are the  peninsula (or presqu’île ) of Croisic ;including the towns of Croisic, Batz-sur-Mer, and Pouliguen in the Loire Atlantique dept 44 Pays de la Loire region.

Others are the island or Île d’Yeu on the south coast of the Vendée island. The island or Île d’Oléron on the west coast of the Charentes island opposite the pertuis d’Antioche. In the coast of the Pays Royannais on the Spanish point or pointe Espagnole in the north of the peninsula or presqu’île d’Arvert until the point or pointe de la Coubre in the limits of the towns of Mathes and La Tremblade. All this bordered by the forest of the Coubre.

And coming into my area; in the Finistére dept 29 we have the  island or Île d’Ouessant out in the Atlantic ocean on the west of the continental part of Brittany (Bretagne).  the island is included geographically in the natural park of the Armorique  or Parc Naturel Régional d’Armorique,  More here in French:

and the marine natural park or parc Naturel Marin d’Iroise; more here in English too:

The Belle-Île-sur-Mer just out from the gulf of Morbihan in my dept 56; including the littoral south west of the island from the pointe des Poulains to the pointe de Skeul.  The biggest island in the Morbihan and very nice as well as historically rich. More in English at tourist office here:

And we come ,back again to the Presqu’île de Quiberon peninsula just south of me.  This peninsula extends from the west part of the peninsula after the village of Portivy to Saint Pierre Quiberon to Port Maria in Quiberon. You have pictures and a great map of the wild coast in French here:

All along the peninsula you will find beaches on both sides bay and ocean, wonderful beaches nice sizes to small creeks very private romantic and wild. The cliffs along the wild coast are impressive and nice, beautiful natural front holding on to the master sea of the Atlantic ocean. Hotels, vacation homes, restos;bars are here to please and choose, tourism of course is big and many have seasonal opening times.

The tourist office of Brittany has more on the wild coast in English here:

We just ride and stop in every creek , every turn of the wild coast and marvel of our ocean majestic wild and powerful in front of us, it is heavens on earth and we are lucky to be very close to it.

On the way back,we had our meal in between lunch and dinner, at Le Vivier in the  Côte Sauvage tel +33 (0) 1 97 50 12 60. this is a full seafood restaurant open from February to November right off the cliffs of the wild coast. Terrace is gorgeous natural and we love it. We had what the ocean has best oysters and mussels with chips and plenty of brut cider Brocéliande; two bottles to boot !!! delicious.  The ciders were 8,50€ each and the mussels for 8,90, fries for 2,50, and oysters dozen for 17€, all reasonable and good. The views of course are tops and well recommended to all; more from the tourist office page in French here:

And now home, enjoying some juices from the Caribbean of guava and pineapple lol!!! or goyave et ananas !!! cruising to start another week of work and reports lol!!! Enjoy it while you can, life is beautiful or la vie est belle!  Enjoy the photos and the views !!!!! Cheers.

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June 10, 2017

My travels in the Morbihan ,XX

And we arrive at Saturday on a off sun on clouds day and temps mild at up to 22C or about 70F; the weather has remained cloudy so far and we are finishing the day now . We have so many plans and work to do on the house ahead ,and visitors from America, that we decided to take it easy and stay home doing some errands and small fixings around the house.

Our town is moving on and has plenty of activities including bicycle races and running counting for the regional championships. And its time for children to be prepare to go to summer camps all over; mine went as far as the French Alps with their school!

We even have an annex of the area Tourist office in the Mayor’s office building or Mairie.  June 17 is the Fête de la Musique in France and here we have in the  Place Saint Michel at 21h30  a performance by the Duo Dan Ar Braz and Clarisse Lavanant; and on the Place du Marché or market square from 19h concert of the music school, 20h demonstration of zumba and country music (US!) 21h concert of Shave And Hair Cut (blue grass music), 23h concert of YP’s (pop rock music) and to end the Breton feast of Fest-Noz with Arvest.

And we have a library or Mediathéque that only you can become members to take media out but you can order it and they deliver it to your house as well! Family at same address pays 18,70€ per year and the library is open Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 9h-12h30 and 14h to 18h30, Saturdays from 9h to 12h30. It is located at Place Notre-Dame des Orties next to the Church Saint Guigner the main one in town and across from our favorite chocolatier store! La Fondue de Chocolat , more here:

The town tourist office is open Mondays to Fridays from 9h30 -12h and 14h-17H ; Tuesdays 10h30-12h and 14h-17h, closed Wednesdays ,Sundays and Holidays ; more here:

We combine a walk in our town with our errands by Vannes and lunch in our all American fast food ! The pictures a bit cloudy not just for the day but they were taken with my old cell phone nokia ::)

We went searching for an exotique grocery store of Caribbean/Asia/Africa goods that we were told had many of the plaintains, maniocs and drinks from my beloved Caribbean, and we found it!! This is Hibiscus 19 Rue Denis Papin, off the D767 across from the Clinique Océane. Loads of goods from the Caribbean here and we load up on plaintains ,maniocs (yucca) , tropical juice drinks like guava, and corned beef, etc other goodies. Of course, now we know and we will be back. More on it here:

We ,of course, went by the pharmacy for that cough medication of these days where the pollen is out and the sinusitis comes back…. I did my appointment at Norauto for my car revision before the summer trips for July already know the cost of it which is nice ahead of time.

Then , we check out the market on the last hour at Vannes place du poids public/place des Lices area which is always loaded with goodies. checking the Halles aux Poissons or fish market is great as well and you get the best direct for what the main reason to be in France, food/wine combination !!! We left our car at the underground parking in place de la République and for only 2€ we parked enough to do it all!!!

We did check into our wine store ,Nicolas in the Place du Poids Public just in the middle of the market, and load up on our favorite liquid white and red , even from Spain! And most of the time as good customers we walk away with a gift ::)

It was time to eat as time was passing by and the gang has an inner circle in their mind that reminds them of their birthplace in Florida so we headed for that famous Floridian landmark worldwide call Burger King. There is one nice one in Ploeren just outside city limits of Vannes and we headed there for that big double bacon whopper and onion rings! More on it here:

We finish by doing our major groceries at E Leclerc hypermarket and it has totally been remodeled to be a very modern spacious store, products from all over and our favorite spot to shop for groceries here, together with the other one in Auray or the Carrefour hypermarket in Vannes inner. More of the latest here:

Then, finally it was time to come back home and think of what to do on a Sunday in the Morbihan from our window to it of Pluvigner. Y’all welcome y’here !!! Cheers

Vannes Vannes Vannes Vannes Vannes Vannes Vannes Vannes Vannes Vannes Vannes Vannes Vannes Vannes Vannes Vannes Vannes Vannes Vannes

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June 8, 2017

Some news from France CLVII

Back to the routine of living in wonderful Morbihan , Brittany, France. Today we had cloudy day with some shots of sunshine and temps in the 60’sF or 14-19C thereabouts. Paris is hotter now at 81F or about 27C .

Giving some good news about what is happening in France and keeping eye on election in the UK with France legislatives election coming up Sunday June 11 with a second round in June 18, which is Father’s Day here!

Vinexpo in Bordeaux, the 19th edition will open June 18 as well , the greatest gathering of wine connoisseurs and amateurs etc the works.  Four days and 45000 professionals will be there. ALso, 2300 stands coming from 40 countries mostly from France, Italy,and Spain . And one of the novelties is the showcase of Bio wine with 150 producers! China will be here with 22 stands from two on the last edition coming strong.  The house of Möet Hennessy will be there with its 21 houses offering their full line of Champagne, spirits, and wines. More here:

The primeurs of wine from a region very dear to me, Médoc and more precisely St Julien all in Bordeaux. The 2016 are coming up superb according to article in Le Figaro newspaper. Some of the best producers are here with score from the journal staff: I would highlight those I like the most, of course, over the years I have tried them all ::)

Château Gloria 2016, 16.5/20; Red fruit nose, black berries, Zan, vanilla. Fresh juice, beautiful mash, tonic, soft tannins, gourmet wine.
Château Langoa-Barton 2016, 17/20; Nose of small notes prunes, bramble, violet. Ample mouth, tannins a little tight, beautiful elongation.
Château Saint-Pierre 2016, 17/20; Intense red fruits, red plum, small black berries. Fresh mouth, small, mature tip, free attack, ample tannin, long final.
Château Gruaud-LaRose 2016, 18/20; Black fruit nose, graphite tip. Fresh, fruity, supple and elegant tannins, fresh finale.
Château Talbot 2016, 18/20; Dense nose, black fruits, red plum. Ample mouth, beautiful acidity, ample tannin, elegant, final very long, wine digestible.
Château Brane-Ducru 2016, 18.5/20; Small black fruits, fresh fruit. Ample mouth, fresh, silky tannins, medium intense, graphite tip, beautiful stretch, nice wine.
Château Lagrange 2016, 18.5/20; Intense red fruits, bramble, Zan, Black cherry. Fresh, elegant mouth, lots of pep, soft tannins, beautiful material, superb elongation. Nice.
Château Léoville Barton 2016, 19/20: Nose of pretty red fruits, cherry, floral, deep. Ample mouth, beautiful attack, elegant tannins, superb finale. Very good success.
Château Léoville Poyferré 2016, 19.5/20; Very fresh red fruit nose, Zan, vanilla. Ample mouth, fruity, ample, greedy, very nice touch of mouth, elegant tannins and coated. Final Sapid. Very big wine.
Moving on away from the wonderful wine of France, the best YES!  I have other news to tell you
The SNCF  is going to renovate the gare du Nord, the biggest in Europe. It will have the first section of work in the period ending in 2018. If  things goes according to plan , there will be a second phase before the opening of the Olympic Games of  2024… if Paris gets the nod. There is a new way of working teaming up with private companies. If all goes well, there will be renovations like it on the stations of  Toulouse-Matabiau, Marseille Saint-Charles ,and the gare de Lyon in Paris. Source: Les Echos business journal
About telling you about those wonderful places where you can have a cup of coffee in a nice garden within a wonderful museum of Paris! These are some of my favorites:

Café Branly,  in the Musée du quai Branly-Jacques Chirac, 37 quai Branly, (7eme). Tel +33 (0)  1 47 53 68 01. Average price of entrée-main meal or main meal and dessert is  35€. More here:

Café Renoir,in the musée de Montmartre, a secret place that you will love to keep for yourself but I couldn’t .  At the foot of the house of the shop of  Suzanne Valadon, located at  12-14 rue Cortot,(18eme). Tél. +33 (0) 1 49 25 89 39. Lunch for about 14€. More here:

A temple of sculpture in the hôtel Biron  where Rodin came in 1908  for never leave. It has a wonderful garden with 3 hectares of garden in the French style and works of art of the master Rodin. You go from an alley to the amphitheater of bower in the basin that you can see the clouds ,rosary, and the great lawn ,also walk in the promenade with shades of trees by the wall of the fence. Here you have the Café du Musée ;Musée Rodin, 77 Rue de Varenne (7eme) Tel +33 (0) 1 45 55 84 39.  average price with entrée-main meal or main meal and dessert is 35€. More here:

In the museum , the café in the Petit Palais is our best. Le Jardin du Petit Palais  is a dream niche in the center of the dome on a long courtyard with beautiful exposition salons, given to an luxurious garden with palmiers, banana trees, maniocs trees bamboos on a basin bordered with mosaics . The ceilings painted in al fresco with rose granite columns and golden flees around it and a terra cotta floor just a Proustian charm.  Le Jardin du Petit Palais, musée des Beaux-arts de la Ville de Paris. Avenue Winston Churchill, (8eme). Tél. +33 (0) 1 40 07 11 41.  menu of the day with main meal and dessert just 16,90€. More here:

You have the small coffee shop in the mansion of Ary Scheffer,  painter of history and portrait maker of amongst others  George Sand, Chopin, Ernest Renan, etc. It is a heaven of peace, a tea in this garden of the musée de la Vie romantique. Hôtel Scheffer-Renan, 16 rue Chaptal, (9eme), Tél. +33 (0) 1 55 31 95 67. Garden formula menu of tarte salée, dessert,and drink for 15,90€. More here:

More on the Americans in Paris trail, the Mona Bismarck American Center  has a wonderful weekend to start the season of pop culture.  The place renamed the  « Summer House » for the occasion welcome the concerts in open air and film projections by the cinéma Christine 21.  Without forgetting the Texan BBQ , with bar and cocktails.  All this until September 2017.

The Forum des Halles  welcomes you for the second year of the Festival Rock en Seine to show you the event « Unexpected Festival», 3 days of discovery of rock and pop music such as Barbagallo et Peter Peter ,Friday, Findlay et Her Saturday, and the  Papooz Sunday. More here:

The 14th meeting of the jardin des  Tuileries  has for theme the « La ville nature». You will discover ephemeral gardens created by expert gardeners with the idea to show in evidence the terraces and balconies all with over 100 shops exposing their trade. This is over with but a good idea to jotted down for next year.  More here and in English in pdf file;

Dedicated to SubSaharan AFrica and the Caribbean the musée Dapper  will closed its doors on June 18 unfortunately. This is the last day of the exhibition “Masterpieces of Africa” . You have about a week to admire it at 35 bis rue Paul-Valéry (16eme), its collection of remarkable art.  The foundation will remain on its work thru cultural events beyond its current walls especially in Senegal and the Caribbean. Enjoy while you can here:

An update on previous post on it; the last sections of the old railroad line around Paris long of 32 kms will be given back to the walkers and pedestrian traffic by 2020. This is on the 20eme south of the rue de la Mare, in the 14eme between the promenade Broussais  and the avenue du Général-Leclerc, in the 17eme along the boulevard Pereire ,and the rue Saussure ,and early by 2019, in the 12eme between the villa du Bel-Air ,and the rue des Meuniers. The petite ceinture is back! More in French here:


Well the local take is not so good on the new café on top of the Arch de la Défense but here it is for info; as not been back since it reopen. The food is not so good and very expensive with four radishes , salt butter etc they propose a menu with entrée-main meal and -dessert for  50€,! The opening was well waited for on the top June 1st after 8 years closed. The lunch at 110 meters high is an experience.  The main advantage when you reserve a table is the ticket to the top is included with the meal so you save 15€  ,which in itself is pretty expensive just to climb to the top terrace. There on top you come to see and enjoy ..the  Les Jardins de Joséphine . No webpage just call the restaurant for reservations at  restaurant Joséphine Chez Dumonet Tel +33 (0)


Curly wigs and bodice dresses are back in the alleys of the Château de Vaux-le-Vicomte (Seine-et-Marne). This coming Sunday, the time of a costumed day, “The Grand Siécle Experience” the home of Nicolas Fouquet, superintendent of Finance of Louis XIV, reconnects with the splendour of the Great century.  Courtiers, Marquises and gentlemen have an appointment in the garden of 33 hectares imagined by Andre Le Nôtre. Lace parasols, ribbon-decorated shoes, taffeta scarves … all the details count to win the best costume prize. Awarded at the end of the day, it will reward the most successful dresses in men, women and children, as well as the best fancy costume. At Chateau de Vaux-le-Vicomte, Maincy (77) Sunday from 10h to 17h, admission 15,50€ to 17,50€ and only 11,50€ for those coming with costumes. You can rent one on site for 35€: more here:
The coronation Mass and Mozart’s Requiem, you know? These two major works by Mozart Open the 37th Festival of Auvers this Friday, June 9. Until July 7, the events take place under the vaults of the Church of Notre-Dame of Auvers, dear to Van Gogh, or the Château de Méry-sur-Oise, a stone’s walk away; You will love Saturday Karine Deshayes, winner of several victories of classical music and Delphine Haiden. These two mezzo-sopranos have prepared a repertoire full of humour from the 19C and Mendelssohn’s songs to the operettas of Offenbach.  On Sunday, with his show “The Pianist with 50 fingers”, Pascal Amoyel will pay homage to the undisputed master of the instrument Georges Cziffra, guest of the festival just 30 years ago, just before his death. Among the inescapable: the great Mass in C of Mozart, on June 25th, relocated to the musical scene of the Ile Seguin in Boulogne (92) directed in Baroque version by the famous chef Laurence Equilbey. Finally, a great accustomed, Natalie Dessay, the immense singer who never takes herself seriously will perform for the closing of the Arias of Schubert, Debussy or Gonod. She will be in duet with pianist Philippe Cassard.  See the Festival of Auvers, Opus 37. Friday, Saturday Sunday and until 7 July. Complete on June 14th. at the Church of Auvers and Château de Méry-sur-Oise. Prices from 20€  to 95€.   Reservations at +33 (0) 1 30 36 77 77. more here :

And last ,but not least in my beloved Versailles:Chez ReminiSens, located in the heart of  Versailles,  the lady Caroline Masselin wanted to create the ambiance of the court in the 17C and 18C at the time of a meal where the food served to the kings of France was appreciated accompany by baroque music such as  « Le Nôtre et les secrets des jardins », « Louis XV et ses liaisons dangereuses » or « Les scandales à la cour du Roi Soleil ». Many emblematic stories told at the table with playing actors that do all this without disturbing the guests. The lady was inspired by recipe books of the time like « Le cuisinier royal et bourgeois », edition of  1729. For the dinner spectacle you will pay between 100€  and 195€  menus.  However, for those not reaching these prices you can have a formule like the « Les petits soupers du régent », going from 12€ to 20€ ,which includes gourmand dishes that you accompany with a glass of Champagne or Rose water. All this located at  20, rue Baillet-Reviron. Tuesdays to Sundays from  19h30 to 23h. Information and reservation at +33 (0) or Cell +33 (0)  More here in pdf file and French:


Easy to come to the above restaurant, just walk out of castle museum on your left hand side take avenue Saint Cloud (past the Grande Ecurie) turn right here; continue walking until Rue du Maréchale Foch passed the market at Notre Dame square, the street before the boulevard de la Reine on your left hand side turn into rue Baillet-Reviron, and the theater restaurant is on your left hand side on what was before the Table of Agadir resto.

Enjoy France as much as I do every day. Cheers!



June 7, 2017

Concarneau has its charms and it bring us back!

This is a nice town with a gorgeous ville close or enclosed old town in a fortress about 40  minutes by car from me. This is Concarneau;  I have written before on it several times here:

 We were back this past Monday an Ascension holiday in France, and had our chow in a familiar place. Some additional photos to complement those taken in the three posts above. You get a bookful of Concarneau but all worth it.

We were at Quimper (see previous posts) and on our way back home had some time so we decided to stop by again. We headed for downtown or city center and it was packed . Not only was market day in Place du Guesclin but also a sailing event and parking was hard to be found. We drove into the other side of the harbor and was able to get an on street parking for free!!!

We come here on the road N165 so easy in and out ride, we did took a quick ride to the Chateau de Keriolet as it opened in the second week of June but , we were late for the guided tour alas!! The story here is of the Russian princess Zénaide Narischkine-Youssoupov and her husband the Count Charles de Chauveau in a wonderful castle of the 19C. The Castle itself foundations dates from the 13C,  and was finance by the princess to built the new renovated castle.  One of the castle owners was prince Félix Youssoupov who was the assassin of Raspoutin.  The castle is only 5 minutes by car from the downtown of Concarneau. More on it here for now:

We took our usual walks in the city by the covered market and the square Guesclin ,the tourist office where this time we got a nice map of the city, and the harbor area.

The ville close was gorgeous as usual and the pleasure boats lovely on a calm day just before the storm. We had our lunch in the restaurant of the Hotel des Grands Voyageurs on the main square facing the ville close fortified city and wonderful as usual. We had our chorizo omelets, mussels in cream sauce, pizzas and salads all down with the local St Omer amber beer and good desserts of a sort of different ice creams mine the Breton favorite caramel sauce over ice cream caramel ! all for less than 22€ per person. A wonderful location to stay if coming visit here from afar: more here :

On way out we saw a new monument the lighthouse or Phare de Beuzec-Conq , this is literally in the home of someone’s property! It was built in 1848 at a height of 9,3 meters…The optic is white and fix until 1894 it will have optic red and white. In 1907 it was refitted with the new tower and electricity finally arrived in 1943 always working until 1964. Some info in French here:

In all  a pleasant ending to a nice ride out with the family, just enjoying the bountiful of Bretagne land of the Bretons! Cheers

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