Archive for June, 2014

We Got A Car! The French Don’t Mess Around…

I hate tunnels.  They’re dark and cold, and there’s nothing to see for miles except red brick and rock.  Construction on the Riqueval tunnel was started in 1802, and it was almost six kilometers long.  That’s over three and half miles.  You’re not allowed to run your engine or generator in the long tunnels for fear of asphyxiation.  Consequently we were towed by an electric tug.  Convoys of up to seventeen barges can transit the tunnel at one ...

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Return to Compiegne and Chateau Pierrefonds

I’m almost embarrassed to write this installment.  It wasn’t that long ago that I wrote about Lisa’s favorite chateau, Chateau Pierrefonds and the Armistice clearing just outside of Compiegne.  We decide to give our friends Tess and Bruce a treat and show them these two very special historical sites.  We had to rent a car because we no longer have Wilco’s.   We will change that situation shortly and buy a car, but that’s a story for another day.

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What the French REALLY Think About Americans

We cruised down the Canal de Saint Quentin taking our time.  Our scheduled passage through the six-kilometer (3.6 mile) Riqueval Tunnel was not until tomorrow morning.  The weather was still overcast with light showers, but our new pilothouse was keeping us warm and cozy.  On both sides of the canal the scenery was typical French countryside… so, absolutely spectacular.

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The Grand Surprise of Gent

Wow! Gent was much more than we had anticipated. Yes, we had heard that some people prefer it to Brugge, but for our money it was far superior.  It has all the museums and churches plus its architecture is more varied and impressive.  Brugge is supposed to be quaint, but with thousands of tourists there’s nothing quaint about it. It’s also more expensive.  They really know how to stick it to the tourists. Gent is not as quaint, ...

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