Poagao's Journal

Absolutely Not Your Monkey

Nov 14 2014

Paris, etc., part 5

Our hotel room is straight out of a rejected line of Ikea showrooms, minus the style. The shower drains out onto the floor, which of course has no drain, and is about a quarter the size of a regular shower.

The sound of howling gusty wind and heavy rain through the night did little to raise our expectations of the weather, but the rain wasn’t too heavy when we finally emerged and walked to the bus station, where they told us that the first bus to Pont Aven was at 12:15. So we walked towards what we thought was downtown, until we realized that we were holding the map upside-down, upon which we turned around and found a bakery with amazing cherry crumbles. Then we explored a market, and I had to wonder why anyone would buy most of the sweets and other foods in the markets here when freshly made versions are readily available in bakeries and shops all over the place; I wonder if the supermarket versions are actually decent. It was refreshing to be surrounded by unadulterated food.

Then we actually went downtown, along the central canal, which is crossed by an amazing amount of bridges for some reason. The weather was nice and nasty in quick turns, and when we took refuse in the massive cathedral, we found the interior under construction. Alas. The combination of wind and rain made us realize why most people here don’t bother umbrellas.

We caught the bus out to Pont Aven, which took around an hour. Pont Aven is an amazingly beautiful little village criss crossed by streams and rivers, all cleverly shunted this way and that, surrounded by lovely woods and hills. We kept running into a group of older people, who greeted us enthusiastically each time. One of the trails led up a hill to the Church of the Yellow Christ, a lonely stone church that told the sad story of Gauguin and how nobody liked his paintings when he was around. I have to admit that the thought of living in one of those houses by the meandering river was attractive. At one point we came across a couple of very large geese, whom Chenbl prompted to attack me. Chenbl can be very persuasive. Around another corner a bunch of cats were playing with a dead mouse.

We tooled around the village until sunset, visiting the port where we fed seagulls and wondered what the big old stone houses were like at Christmas. Then we bought some sweets and then took the bus back to Quimper for a rather poor substitute for dinner at an Asian fusion restaurant. Why were we there? I suppose Chenbl and Xiao Guo were somewhat homesick for Asian food, but I’m sure that desire has been crushed because it wasn’t very good. Chenbl kept trying to speak Chinese to the owner, who turned out to be Vietnamese.

Tomorrow we plan to walk around a bit more, and then take the train back to Paris.

posted by Poagao at 5:32 am  

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