My Travel Blog

This Barge Is Not Built for 12!

Our son Randy and his wife Alexis just arrived with our two gorgeous granddaughters.  To help out with the kids Wilco brought his beautiful fifteen-year-old daughter Marscha.  We definitely have a full boat.  Now there is talk that Lisa’s nephew David and his wife Cecile along with their two young boys will also be joining us for a couple of nights.  Yikes, that’s twelve people.  Poor Rabelo was never designed to carry so many, especially rug rats, munchkins or ankle biters.  Lisa said I shouldn’t worry they’re just kids.  That’s easy for her to say. Fortunately all I have to do is pay the bills and drive.  Of course there’s the clean up I always manage to inherit as well, ugh!

“Geese visiting our front yard in St. Jean de Losne.”

“A barge on the Soane loading 3,000 tons of wheat. That’s a lot of baguettes.”

“The Hotel-Dieuin the city of Beaune was a state of the art hospital for the poor.”

“Two patients were placed in each bed.”

Originally I had planned on continuing down the Soane River, and then eventually turning onto the Canal du Centre, and heading to Paris.  We just found out that the Haute Seine, the portion of the Seine up stream from Paris, will be closed all of September for maintenance.  Now we have some extra time to explore Burgundy.  Randy said he wanted to see the Burgundy Canal and Dijon so we started the engine, pulled in our lines, and off we went.  It was just that simple, and one of the reasons we enjoy barging so much.

“Rabelo’s bow gets a shower in the lock.”

The Burgundy Canal from St. Jean de Losne to Dijon is perfectly straight.  The countryside so flat it reminded me of The Netherlands.We cruised up the canal on placid waters lined with tall trees forming a steep valley that pointed us to Dijon.  The August heat had set in along with an occasional afternoon thundershower.   The birds were singing as we moved along the canal at a stately pace while the sunflowers were out in full bloom.  The golden wheat fields waved in the breeze.

“The tree lined Burgundy Canal.”

“Even the locks along the Burgundy Canal are beautiful.”

Half way to Dijon we stopped at the village of Longecourt.  As soon as Rabelo was tied up Lisa, Randy and I set out to do some exploring.  Longecourt was a little larger than most villages so there was hope we might find a boulangerie.  In the center of the town stands Chateau Longecourt.  It is a private residence in need of help.  Its brick walls were once covered in ornate stucco, but now look tired and worn.  Eventually we found a boloungerie, but wouldn’t you know it the place was closed.  It’s August, and half of France is on vacation.

“The Chateau Longecourt looking a little tired.”

“With Rabelo’s roof down it’s a tight fit.”

-Tom Miller
Author of “The Wave” – 
a Chuck Palmer Adventure novel

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About the Author:

Tom Miller graduated from the University of Southern California with a Bachelor of Science in Geology. He is a consummate adventurer with over 1,000 dives as a recreational scuba diver, and an avid sailor who has traveled 65,000 miles throughout the Pacific including the Hawaiian Islands. Miller has also cruised the canals of Europe on his canal barge and given numerous lectures on cruising the canals of Europe, as well as sailing in the South Pacific. Piloting is also an interest of Miller's, and He has completed over 1,000 hours flying everything from small Cessnas to Lear jets.