Wednesday, May 9, 2012


Wednesday, May 09, 2012

We set a later start time this morning and had our breakfast at 8:30 am.  By that time we were packed and ready to go.  The plan was to put Terry and Linda’s luggage in our room…as they had to carry it down several flights of curved stairs…we have a room on the ground level and then walk a bit in the city to find some gifts they wanted to purchase as this was our last day in Provence.  I was going to look for the manhole cover for my sister…she asked if I’d gotten a photo of the one we found in front of the Arena in 2009.

We each went into our rooms and when I bent over to put our computer cords in the suitcase…MY BACK WENT OUT!   Thank goodness we’d though to ask our doctor for a small supply of pain pills!  I immediately took one and also got out my airplane neck pillow for the small of my back. 

I laid on the bed while Terry and Linda did their shopping.  Jim stayed with me and started packing the car with suitcases.  Less than an hour later we were on the road and headed south on the Auto Route 9; expensive but smooth roads and fast.  We had a drive of nearly three hours to reach our next hotel.  I was so glad I had my pillow behind the small of my back.

We decided to split the day up and find the Abbeye de Fontfroide that Linda had planned as a possible site on the road south.  It was a bit of a challenge as Fifi didn’t seem to recognize our input….so we also used the paper maps.  Part of the way there I’d taken another pill; when we arrived I dozed in the car while they went off to tour the Abbeye and Linda took my camera for photos.  She took the wonderful photos in the slideshow.  

When they returned we made use of the picnic table under the trees, spread our tablecloth and actually had a “real” picnic!  Except for me…I elected to stay in the car and eat my lunch there.  Soon we were back on the road and heading south again…it was 2:30 pm and the sun had finally broken through the clouds.

We arrived in Collioure about 4 pm and found another tourist packed village on the seashore. This village is less than one hundred miles from Spain. We’d packed smart this morning and only had to bring our small cases into the hotel.   I know that the bulk of the people will be gone before dark but for now it makes parking extremely difficult.  We double parked and got our luggage out…then Terry…the driver today…took the car up the hill to the train station parking lot where we have to feed the meter.

Our hotel is the Les Templiers…they have an elevator (so nice and unusual in the quaint little hotels we’ve chosen to stay in)…and both of our rooms overlook the port.  This is our first “view” room and even has a two foot wide balcony…big enough to step out on but not big enough to put a chair out.  I’m sitting in a chair with my pillow…I also took a third pill an hour ago…and Jim is lying on the bed; our French doors to the balcony are wide open…the flies fly in and the flies fly out…the pigeon landed on the rail but didn’t come into the room.  

Linda and Terry are out verifying the best place to park…we’re here two nights…and they are also looking for a place for dinner tonight.  I think we’re all going to take a day off tomorrow and just relax.  I’m definitely going to and I think the rest are going to take advantage of the excuse and enjoy our lovely little beach town with me.  Hopefully I will be much better tomorrow and able to walk without bending over.

At 7 pm we walked over to the Copacabana Restaurant for dinner.  We had a wonderful cold plate of lobster, crab, prawns and shrimp; all still in the shell.  What a meal…messy but sooo good.  We also had two bottles of white wine.  The sun set as we were enjoying our very special meal as we overlooked the port.   There were military personal enjoying ice cream as we arrived and by the time we finished dinner they were dressed in full uniform for a night drill on the water.  Faces were camouflaged to match their uniforms and they had assault weapons.  

We watched as they were loaded into a boat and then went for ice cream.  Suddenly we had another crew coming towards us all fully loaded and with the camouflaged faces.  We enjoyed encouraging them and they smiled at the gray haired old lady who was flirting with them.

Finally called it an evening and headed for bed.  We’ve all agreed to a late breakfast and a day off tomorrow.  We have half an hour free of Internet a day and they say that it is free in the bar?

We’ll find out tomorrow as I’ll use the free time to load the blog tonight.  I did put my Orange USB chip in earlier today and found that it was still working just fine.  I have to use it all before we return to Paris as my 30 days will run out before then.  It worked fine and I uploaded most of my photos before dinner. 
 A Bientot…

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