Archive for January, 2013

Culture Shock! Can’t We Just Stay On The Canals?

After our harrowing experience on the Marne River I was looking forward to the peace and quiet of a sleepy canal.  Once tied up in Meaux, we would almost be done with any more treacherous currents.

Brie cheese was invented in Meaux, so we found a delectable cheese shop on a little side street. Lisa and I lost all control.  We couldn’t help ourselves.  There were hundreds of cheeses to pick from.  The smells were overwhelming, and ...

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Returning to Chateau de Fere

We continued down the Marne River.  The weather was changing.  Clouds were building. The sky was getting dark, and rain was in the forecast. The current was running much faster due to the recent storms.  After our foray into the trees I was paying extra attention making sure Rabelo wasn’t going to be pushed into the foliage again by the strong current.

Chateau Thierry was our next stop.  There’s not much left of the actual chateau, but ...

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Exploring The Aisne-Marne and Le Chateau de la Ferte-Milon

We headed off to our next chateau, but on the way we passed another World War I cemetery. The Aisne-Marne American Cemetery nestles up against the foothills of the Belleau Woods where most of the 2289 American soldiers who are buried there lost their lives.  It is a beautiful, peaceful yet haunting park with its row after row of grave markers.  To see the names of so many American heroes on the stark stone chapel walls brings tears ...

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Exploring the Chateau’s of Champagne

After a wonderful week with our friends we needed to take the champagne tasting down a notch.  Rather than succumbing to a life of decadence and debauchery we decided to seek out the chateau’s hidden throughout the Champagne Region.  Please don’t get me wrong.  I never said we would eliminate the consumption of champagne only reduce it slightly.

Our next stop was Dormans where we parked Rabelo in the same spot we had parked Tigrerose nine years ...

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Chandon, Perignon and Tattinger – Oh My!

The tasting with Michel Gonet was the perfect beginning for our champagne mission.  The next stop was Reims.  I’ve never been a huge fan of large champagne houses.  Vintners like Moet & Chandon, Dom Perignon and Tattinger, in my opinion, don’t offer the value of the smaller producers.  What they do offer is an interesting tour of their massive facilities.  We visited Tattinger with its vast underground caverns originally excavated by the Romans (The French pronounce Tattinger Tah-ta-jay.) ...

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