Bonjour – Hello


Nous sommes heureux que vous soyez ici! Je vous remercie.

Si notre français doit être corrigé, envoyez-nous vos commentaires. En 2014, nous avons traduit l’entrée quotidienne du blog en français. Mais pour 2016, ce sera tout de suite dans un certain temps. Habituellement, le blog ne sera que en anglais.

Pour 2017, ce sera un blog hebdomadaire, espérons-le, publié dimanche. Ce ne sera probablement qu’en anglais. La traduction en français n’est pas difficile, c’est tout le reformatage du texte et des images qui le rendent difficile.

We are glad you are here! Thank you.

If our French needs to be corrected, send us your comments. In 2014 we translated the daily blog entry into French.  But for 2016 that will be just once in a while.  Usually the blog will only be in English.

For 2017 it will be a weekly blog hopefully published on Sunday.  It will probably only be in English.  The translation to French is not difficult, it is all the reformatting of the text and pictures which makes it difficult.


le semaine se terminant le dimanche 15 juillet 2018 – the week ending Sunday July 15, 2018


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If you want to see the album of our pictures from June 2018, you can click on this link, June 2018.

le lundi 9 juillet 2018 – Monday July 9, 2018

We took the bus to the Carrefour Hypermarché located at La Madeleine Shopping mall. We wanted to buy things that aren’t available at the markets or the mid-sized Intrmarche grocery store where we usually shop. We bought dental floss, garbage bags (20 liter size, elastic at the top with drawstrings to close), lightly breaded fish (similar to the fish from “fish + chips”), and fresh ravioli filled with spinach. We only waited less than 5 minutes for the bus to return to the Intra-Muros. It was a successful trip. It was hot today on the bus. We sat on the sun side of the bus and the temperature was 25 C with very little wind.

We had a text from Michael with a gorgeous photo of white water falls from Iceland.

High tide took place around 16h30 this afternoon with a low co-efficient of 58. We walked in the water with the tide still coming in. There was still some beach visible at the Plage de l’Eventail. Some of the beach,  towards the Digue, was totally under water. It was nice to be in cool water on a very sunny day.


the beach is very near the wall at this high tide, not much beach but we did not have to walk far to the water

le mardi 10 juillet 2018 – Tuesday July 10, 2018

This morning at La Fournee Malouine two new assistants waited on Sandy when she ordered our breakfast. They are not used to hearing her style of French and she is unfamiliar with them. Sandy had to repeat herself 3 times before her order was understood.

After breakfast and shopping at our local marché, we took the bus to the Rocabey stop. We needed to go to a para-pharmacy to purchase vitamins and other toiletries that aren’t available at the grocery stores. We went to the first para-pharmacy, Rocabey Para-Pharmacy, but they only had one of the three items we needed. We walked around the corner to the Para-pharmacy de La Gare for the additional 2 items. They were very busy.

We walked back towards Intra-Muros on the shady side of the street. The temperature was 24 C but felt much hotter. We were glad to reach our apartment.

During our walk back to the apartment we spotted a car with a license plate from Portugal in parking lot.


car from Portugal in the parking lot

After lunch we reserved our train and hotel room for our return trip to the USA in September. Time goes fast.

An hour before the time of high tide we walked to the Place de l’Evantail to walk in the water. The wind had picked up and the temperature had actually dropped since our walk in the morning. However, the water was warmer!

le mercredi 11 juillet 2018 – Wednesday July 11, 2018

Today was the last day of Michael’s vacation. The photos he sent from Iceland this week have been almost magical. So much white water, rocks, cliffs, falls but very few trees. He returns to the U. S. late this afternoon.

It was only 15 C when Sandy shopped for our breakfast. She even wore a jacket today. We took the bus to the Intermarche grocery store, did our shopping, checked out quickly, and were back at the bus stop to return home in 45 minutes!

After lunch it was still cool in the shade, so we took our camping chairs to the harbor. The tide was coming in with at least 3 more hours until high tide. There were many things happening. We watched at least 4 fishing boats unload huge amounts of mussels packed in orange mesh bags, weigh them, throw the orange bags onto pallets, and load into refrigerated trucks. Four Corsair Ferries were coming and going, and when the locks opened we watched a Russian cargo ship and 10 sail boats exit the basin into the channel. The Condor Ferry was loading, and the Armorique a light house and beacon repair ship returned to the harbor. We had a very entertaining two hours!


weighing crustaceans from a fishing boat


unloading moules (mussels) from a boat

le jeudi 12 juillet 2018 – Thursday July 12, 2018

We received a text around 5h30 am this morning letting us know Michael was back in Grand Rapids. His cat was glad to have him at home.

Sandy asked the assistant at La Fournee Malouine if the boulangère was here this week. Sandy hadn’t see her since Sunday. The assistant thanked her, said that was nice, the madam was here all week just very busy making many sandwiches in the back. They do a large take-away sandwich business this time of year. With the new terrace, this boulangerie is even more enticing to have an inexpensive lunch and be able to sit down in the shade.

We watched Alain play boules for a few minutes and visited with him. He and his wife had just returned yesterday from attending Jean’s funeral in Paris.  They had spent 6 nights helping Denise in Paris.

We walked in the water at the Plage de Môle at low tide. There was a lot of sand to walk through!


while on our walk in the water we saw these kids learning to sail

After dinner we listened to the “Les Corsairs Malouins” sing sea shanties. They were very entertaining.  We have fun watching and listening to the group.


“Les Corsairs Malouins” sing sea shanties

le vendredi 13 juillet 2018 – Friday July 13, 2018

The town was very quiet when Sandy shopped for our breakfast.

We walked to the Saint-Servan marché to purchase meat. We arrived at the bridge while it was open and waited a few minutes for boats to enter the lock and the bridge to slide closed. The marché was busy. A lot of tourists in town for vacation and extra people in town due to tomorrow being the Fete National 14th Juillet. After 15 minutes in line, it was our turn.

We had an uneventful walk back home and since the wind was out of the north there was a cool breeze blowing.

Today was one of the days of the Grande Marée where the tide is exceptionally high. The expected co-efficient was 101. It was also one of the days of exceptionally low tide. There were warnings in the newspaper and on the radio for people to be observant.  It was a good day for “Pêche à Pied,” fishing by foot. People walk out a very long way in the sand to the sand bars to dig or rake for their dinner. The warnings were due to the fact that once the tide starts to come back in it does it very rapidly. We walked in the sand a very long way before we got to the ocean.  We were on the far side of the Fort National. It was farther than we’d ever gone to reach the water. We walked in the water for a while in both warm and cold temperatures.


the beach at low tide, it is quite a walk to the water

le samedi 14 juillet 2018 – Saturday July 14, 2018

Today was the Fete National Quatorze Juillet (National Holiday 14th of July). A lot of visitors were expected in town. Signs had been posted at parking lots, entrances to the ramparts etc about the possible closure. The Intra-Muros was closed to all vehicular traffic starting at 17h00 unless you had proof of residency or owned a business. Restaurants and bars were busy!

We walked to the beach before noon today. A Grande Marée is scheduled for 8h45 and after 21h00 this evening. We wanted to walk in the water between a high and low tide to avoid walking through blocks of sand and yet have enough beach to walk on. The sky was brilliantly blue and the air fresh.


great looking sail boat we saw on our walk on the beach

Later we walked out of the walls at 22h45 to be in place to see the fireworks. There were very large city trucks, garbage truck size blocking the entrance to all of the ports. Streets were blocked off and police were around.

At 23h00 the fireworks started. It was just barely dark but they were on time. They were set off at the Môle des Noires or the breakwater. We and several thousand additional people stood in the middle of one of the round points to watch. They were incredible and timed to music played over large speakers. It was amusing to hear songs from the USA, Ireland, France, and other countries. Several of the songs dealt with the sea, and one of the famous Saint-Malo songs Santiano was part of the entertainment. The fireworks lasted for 22 minutes, 6 minutes longer than last year. We were back in our apartment by 23:30. Time for bed!

le dimanche 15 juillet 2018 – Sunday July 15, 2018

It was relatively quiet when Sandy shopped for our breakfast. She passed several street cleaning crews trying to clean up after such a crowd yesterday.

After breakfast we took the number 1 bus to the Le Mouchoir Vert bus stop and then walked about 1/2 kilometer to the Vide Grenier (empty attic flea market) at Square de Biscayenne on the Rue de la Marne.  Every year it is a big market with lots of vendors.  Our friend Alain and his wife Mary-Yvonne were there.  Alain was helping at the concessions stand.


the large crowd at the Vide Grenier

On the way back we missed our bus and ended up walking all the way back to the apartment.

This afternoon is the final of the World Cup from Russia.  France and Croatia are playing.  There are people all over the place in the Place du Marché aux Légumes.  There was a lot of horn blowing and shouting during the game.  France won 4-2 so everyone is pretty happy.   The game ended about 4 hours ago, but the celebrating is still going.






le semaine se terminant le dimanche 8 juillet 2018 – the week ending Sunday July 8, 2018


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le lundi 2 juillet 2018 – Monday July 2, 2018

It was much calmer and more quiet at the boulangerie today.  Sandy shopped there for our breakfast. She saw our friend Michel, owner of the Hotel Quic-En-Groigne, picking up a huge basket of various breakfast breads for his guests.

After breakfast we tried to beat the predicted rain and do some grocery shopping. By the time we finished our shopping, the rain had been delayed until after 15h00.

After lunch we walked to the boules court to see if Alain was playing. He was playing but throwing with his left hand. He said he had “tennis elbow” in his right arm and was using his left arm today. The rain had again been pushed back until after 16h00 so we walked towards the Mole, the breakwater.


while on our walk on the Mole, breakwater

On our return we walked down Rue de l’Orme.  This short street has a butcher shop, a cheese shop, a Le Bar à Babas shop (rum desserts), the world famous butter shop Bordier, a small vegetables and fruit shop, 4 restaurants, and the Halle Blé.

This is the “year of the terrace” since the butcher shop and Le Bar à Babas were having terraces installed today. Rue de L’Orme is a very congested street now, with terraces and tourists it will be a challenge when walking.

le mardi 3 juillet 2018 – Tuesday July 3, 2018

It rained over night and the streets were wet.

Sandy shopped for our breakfast at Maison de Pain. When she walked through the door the lady greeted her with a “Bonjour,” and then asked “Pain au raison and un baguette gana?” Sandy answered oui, paid for her purchases, and was out the door on her way back home.

Michael took the train from Paris Gare Montparnasse to visit us today. He arrived around 13h30.

After a quick sandwich at home we walked along the Ramparts and admired the views. The sun was shining but the temperature was not hot. Sandy and I enjoyed a “Menthe à l’eau” (mint syrup and water) and Michael had a beer at Le Charly’s Bar before heading for home. At the bar, the waiter asked Michael if he wanted a lo-cal beer. Michael thinking he meant a light beer said no. However, the waiter was referring to a locally brewed beer – aka “local”. We still find it interesting to hear culturally appropriate phrases and understand the true meaning of each phrase.  In the end Michael got a regular beer.

This is the week of the 23rd edition of the Folklore du Monde, World Folklores. There are 20 different groups performing throughout the week from the countries of: ALGERIA, MACEDONIA, URUGUAY, GEORGIA, THE REPUBLIC OF TUVA, MEXICO, and IRELAND. They perform at different places round town and also feature Bretagne (Brittany) dancers and musicians. We watched two groups perform from Algeria and Macedonia just a few steps outside our apartment on the main street. Very colorful and entertaining!

For dinner we ate at one of the restaurants on the Place du Marché aux Légumes. It was a beautiful evening and especially enjoyable since Michael was with us.

le mercredi 4 juillet 2018 – Wednesday July 4, 2018

The USA is celebrating a holiday today!

The weather forecast was for rain in the afternoon so we headed to the beach around 11. Michael was swimming while Sandy and I sat on our beach chairs. It began to rain, even though at that time there was a 15% chance. We picked up our chairs, climbed the stairs to the street, and by then it had stopped. Back down to the sand we went and watched Michael dive off the “high dive”. Since high tide had just occurred, the distance to the water from the high dive was not as high as normal because most of the platform was still under water. That was the end of the rain for the day.


sandy reacting to the cold water


Michael on low high dive

After a quick-lunch at home we decided to walk to the harbor to check out the boules game. Our friend Alain was in the lobby picking up the mail for Denise. He told us he was meeting the immobile so Denise could sell her apartment. Another sad bit of news.

The entertainment from the Folklore du Monde was from Uruguay and Georgie. Part of one of the dances included swords, so there was a lot of music, noise, and dancing!

We had dinner at restaurant L’Aristide for this first time. The dinner was delicious and beautifully presented. However, the prices were high compared to other restaurants in the area. We’ll save this for special occasions.

le jeudi 5 juillet 2018 – Thursday July 5, 2018

After breakfast we took the Corsaire ferry to Dinard. It was a beautiful day. The sun was shining, there was a light breeze blowing and the temperature was around 70 F. We Walked to the Dinard marché, looked at a few stalls then returned to the beach. Michael went in swimming and we sat on a bench enjoying the day and watching seagulls. We watched a lady become very startled when a sea-gull walked up to her pizza box and helped himself to a slice of pizza. She wasn’t happy but it was amusing to watch. We purchased ham sandwiches to eat on the bench after Michael finished swimming. Then we walked back to the ferry dock and returned to Saint-Malo. It was a lovely 4 hour trip.


on the Corsaire ferry heading to Dinard

Around 18h00 we watched the Folklores du Monde entertainment from Mexico and the Republic of Tuva.


throat singers from the Republic of Tuva, on the TV show “The Big Bang Theory” the Sheldon character was attempting to learn Tuvan throat singing


folklore dancers from Mexico

After the entertainment, we walked along the beach out of the walls near the ocean. It was a great walk and we stopped at PIZZERIA L’OLIVIER for dinner. We each enjoyed a pizza, had a nice walk back and bought ice cream cones from Sanchez for dessert. Sandy read in the newspaper that SNCF, the train company was having a strike today and tomorrow. We’ll check in the morning on Michael’s train trip back to Paris


le vendredi 6 juillet 2018 – Friday July 6, 2018

After breakfast Sandy looked up Michael’s train trip for Saturday. His train trip was one involved in the strike and it had been cancelled. We discovered he could take a direct train tomorrow from here back to Gare Montparnasse. So, we booked a hotel room for him again at the Hotel Plaza Opera, cancelled his hotel room at the CDG airport, and took the bus to the train station. Upon arriving, there wasn’t anyone waiting in line and we were able to change his train reservation. We then took the bus to Saint-Servan, looked at the market, walked to the Rosarie Sainte Anne garden, down to the beach and back home. It’s a great walk.


flower garden by the Tour Solidor in Saint-Servan

At home, we received an email from the owner of the Hotel Plaza Opera. She saw we had booked another night for Michael and asked us to do her a favor. Her son had been here this week visiting our mutual friends who own the Hotel Quic-En-Groigne here in Saint-Malo. He accidentally left his keys at the hotel and wanted to know if our son would bring them with him tomorrow to their Paris hotel. No problem. Glad we can help out. She has always gone out of her way to take care of us at her hotel and this will help them a lot.

Michael complained of ear discomfort today. Around 15h00 we decided it was worth a trip to the doctor’s office to see if an appointment was available in the afternoon. We were in luck.  The receptionist, who knows us, was still there.  She was very kind and scheduled him for a 19h40 appointment later in the day. He didn’t feel well all afternoon. Dr. Bernard-Griffith diagnosed an outer ear infection.

On the way back from the doctor’s office we stopped at Chez Marcel for a kebab sandwich for dinner.

le samedi 7 juillet 2018 – Saturday July 7, 2018

Since the pharmacies closed at 19:30 last night we weren’t able to pick up Michael’s prescription. Phil took care of that this morning. We translated the instructions and he was set for the next 7 days.

At 11 am all of us took the bus to the train station, There were many people waiting and 4 trains parked at the station, Michael’s train left 5 minutes late, but at least it was running. A few later trains had been cancelled due to the strike. We were sad to say good-bye, but anxious to hear of his next 3 days in Iceland before returning to the USA. It was a very pleasant visit and we sincerely enjoyed having him with us. He is such an easy-going, fun person to be around. We are very proud of him and all of his accomplishments.


Michael and Sandy – about to escort Michael on to the train for Paris

It was a quiet afternoon with just two of us at home. At 17h00 the last Folklore du Monde performed at the Esplanade Saint Vincent. The trees next to the ramparts are large enough next to provide shade for the performers and some of the viewers. We were in the shade. The group from Uruguay performed for over 30 minutes. The dances and songs were different from what we had seen earlier in the week. The next group from Algeria was not as interesting to us. They had several drums, the dancers wore masks, and had sword fights. After 15 minutes we headed for home.

le dimanche 8 juillet 2018 – Sunday July 8, 2018

We took a walk on the digue this morning.  A lot of people on the digue, on the beach and in the water.


people on the beach and in the water


In the afternoon, Michael was at the airport for his flight to Reykjavik Iceland.  He will stay in Iceland until Wednesday.  Then he will return to the USA via Chicago.


le semaine se terminant le dimanche 1 julliet 2018 – the week ending Sunday July 1, 2018


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le lundi 25 juin 2018 – Monday June 25, 2018

The forecast is for a high of 23 C, almost 75 F. We took the bus, shopped at the Intermarche grocery store, returned on the bus all in less than an hour and a half.

Sandy spent awhile continuing to wash windows, window sills, frames and the frames of our awnings in the back or west side of the apartment. With warm temperatures predicted all week, she wanted the windows clean and cobweb free. We also bought a large bottle of Monsieur Prop, Mr. Clean, this morning.  When the pigeons are gone there will be a lot of cleaning to do on the balcony.

We went out to the harbor late in the afternoon and discovered Alain finishing up a boules game. It was very pleasant in the shade with a fairly cool breeze.


the Sirocco in the harbor

Sandy peeked around the curtain to see how the squab was doing before bedtime.  Unfortunately it did not survive.

le mardi 26 juin 2018 – Tuesday June 26, 2018

Today’s high temperature forecast is for 27 C.  Hot for Saint-Malo. Sandy shopped at the marché for fresh fruit and vegetables.

Later, we took the 10h03 #6 mini bus to the Saint-Servant marché to go to the butcher. We wanted to buy ground beef and some sausage meat to make meatballs. We also bought some chicken breasts. We walked home down the hill and could tell it was going to be a warm day.

There seem to be many more tourists around. Apparently many arrived Sunday or yesterday. You can tell because they’re uncertain where they’re driving, frequently making wrong turns on one way or dead-end streets. Then they have to back out causing traffic jams.

In the afternoon we went to the beach. We took water shoes and walked in the ocean in mid-calf deep water. It was still surprisingly cold, but the day was sunny warm and refreshing.


walking around on the beach in the shallow water


le mercredi 27 juin 2018 – Wednesday June 27, 2018

Phil spent almost an hour cleaning up our balcony this morning. Good thing we purchased a large-sized bottle of Monsieur Prop! We can finally put our table and chairs on the balcony and enjoy it ourselves. Sandy is glad to have the railing to hang our clothes drying rack from the sides.

The forecast is for a high of 28 C. Another hot day. Phil made meatballs and Sandy spent the rest of the morning cleaning the french doors to the balcony.

We spent over an hour walking in the ocean in the afternoon. It’s such a great way to stay cool and get some exercise.


kids learning to sail on Wednesday afternoon, no school in the afternoon

We enjoyed Phil’s meatballs for dinner.

le jeudi 28 juin 2018 – Thursday June 28, 2018

The warm forecast continues. Sandy opens all of the french doors and windows of our apartment when she gets up in the morning. Then as the sun rises over the walls and buildings we close the windows and shutters to stay cool. So far, this has worked.

Sandy was pleased to see the madam at La Fournee Malouine when she shopped for our breakfast. The boulangère (female baker) said she’d had a great vacation. During her vacation a terrace had been installed in the front of her store.

Sandy made several unplanned trips down our stairs. She was continuing to clean our balcony using the broom. The head of the broom, the part with the bristles, shot off the handle and fell to the ground. She ran downstairs to retrieve it. The broom needed some repairs. Next she washed the french doors on the outside while standing on the balcony. The wind had become much stronger and before she knew it, her roll of paper towels blew to the ground. Downstairs she went again to retrieve them. Finally finished, we decided that it was so nice and cool we didn’t care to wade in the ocean.

We took our chairs to the harbor at low tide and watched the water rise. The Armorique, a ship we hadn’t seen before arrived to wait for the locks to open. It is a ship that manages the lighthouses and buoys. It had come from Roscoff, France. By the time the locks opened, 2 hours prior to high tide, there were 12 boats waiting to enter the lock.


Armorique with signal lights on the deck


gull that came by to see if we had any food to share

le vendredi 29 juin 2018 – Friday June 29, 2018

At the La Fournee Malouine this morning to purchase our breakfast Sandy saw the new tables and chairs on the terrace. They look very pretty and will be enjoyed for sure.

After breakfast Sandy shopped at our marché for fruit. She knows the “routine” by now. If you want to purchase fruits and vegetables you wait, sometimes in line, for Monsieur Alix or his helpers to serve you. You only help yourself when directed by him with a “servez-vous,” serve yourself. There were two people in line in front of Sandy. An English gentleman that had helped himself to leeks and was standing there holding the leeks and his money waiting to pay. Another local lady was waiting in front of Sandy. Monsieur Alix helped the local lady in front of Sandy. Then he helped Sandy. The English gentleman was ignored until after Sandy left and there wasn’t anyone else in line. He will learn the routine quickly.

We took the bus to Intermarché to buy ice cream drumsticks to enjoy for the weekend Our favorite flavor is a chocolate and pistachio twist. Delicious!

Our friend Alain stopped by after lunch to deliver some sad news.  Our friend Jean, who we had visited in May in Paris, had died during the night.  Tough news for us.  But even tougher for Alain.  Jean was Alain’s cousin, but more like a brother.

Around 16:00 we walked to the Plage de l’Eventail to walk in the water. The tide was just beginning to come in and we walked quite a ways on sand to reach water. The water was very clear and cool-refreshing!


10 kite surfers enjoying the water and a stiff wind

On the way back, we passed a group of people walking down the street who had purchased galettes for a snack. A lady had her galette on a paper plate in her hand. We watched a gull swoop down from the sky and grab the galette. The gull dropped it on the ground in front of the lady and took a few bites. It was very amusing to see, although the lady seemed very surprised and not very happy!

le samedi 30 juin 2018 – Saturday June 30, 2018

The forecast is for hot again today. So far this week, we have avoided real hot days. There has been a breeze out of the north keeping the temperatures pleasant, even with the sun shining.

After breakfast we decided to walk in the ocean around noon before low tide. We wanted to avoid walking through a block or more of beach to reach the water. The clouds came out, the wind was from the north, and the temperature was around 20 C or 68 F. We went to the beach anyway. The sun came out making us feel warm but was very comfortable.


Sandy after our walk on the beach in the water

The forecast changed to reach a high of 26 C. With our windows open to dry sheets, it seemed like a hurricane was blowing through our apartment. Both Paris, France and Holland, Michigan are under excessive heat warnings today. Fortunately here in Saint-Malo we are not.

For dinner we went to Chez Marcel’s for kebab sandwiches, frites and Orangina. Sandy wore a windbreaker since the wind was still strong. We arrived shortly after 19:00 and he was not quite ready to open. Everything was delicious as usual.

After eating we walked to the esplanade Saint-Vincent. Tomorrow is July 1st and we will need new bus passes. The new cards and automated machines make it very convenient to renew for the month. We’re ready for tomorrow!

le dimanche 1 juillet 2018 – Sunday July 1, 2018

We were woken up during the night by thunderstorms. Usually living in a building made of granite we don’t hear too much. The thunder and lightning must have been loud.

La Fournee Malouine was extremely busy this morning. A group of bicycle riders had just arrived from the UK on the ferry.  Every table in the back was occupied. They all ordered coffee and something to eat for breakfast and were buying sandwiches for lunch. The two tables in the front were occupied by two Asian couples. Sandy was 5th in line and by the time she was ready to leave the line was out the door. Great business today!

Just got a text that Michael had landed at CDG airport in Paris.  Good!

In the afternoon we walked down to the harbor. We took our camping chairs so we could sit in the shade of the trees.  Most of the benches are not in the shade.  Also they are wood and very rough on the bottom.  A dog and its owner were in the harbor area exposed by the low tide.  The dog was having a great time going in and out of the water.


dog exited the water but was in again in a few seconds

Just got a text from Michael that he had checked into his hotel.  Great!







le semaine se terminant le dimanche 24 juin 2018 – the week ending Sunday June 24, 2018


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le lundi 18 juin 2018 – Monday June 18, 2018

La Fournee Malouine, Sandy’s favorite boulangerie, is closed for vacation. La Maison du Pain, a very close boulangerie, is only 58 steps round trip from our apartment door, so that was the breakfast stop for today.

We took the bus to the hardware store Bricorama. It is located across the street from E. Leclerc. We were looking for short, sheer curtains for our bedroom windows and a drapery pull. We found two different style curtains, but since we hadn’t measured accurately, didn’t buy any. We found a drapery pull but just purchased one until we see how it works. Back home for lunch.


could not find the right curtains

le mardi 19 juin 2018 – Tuesday June 19, 2018

In the afternoon we walked out to Le Môle des Noires, the breakwater. The Europa cruise ship was moored in the harbor between Dinard and Saint-Malo. We watched another cruise ship the Silver Wind maneuver to the place where two tug boats were waiting. The tugs then pushed the cruise ship into place. We sat in the sunshine on top of the wall of the Mole and watched for over an hour. The sun felt wonderful!


Silver Wind entering the harbor

le mercredi 20 juin 2018 – Wednesday June 20, 2018

It was foggy and drizzly.  Sandy walked to the Cathedral Boulangerie to buy our breakfast. They were the closest boulangerie open today. However, the sign on their cash register said closed for vacation from Sunday 24 June to 4 July. So it will be Maison de Pain for breakfast next week too.

At around 18h30 pm, Sandy noticed 4 police officers standing at the top of the stairs outside our bedroom window. They had roped off the stairs with two sets of crime tape and the restaurant at the top was closed. At 20h30 we walked by to dispose of our garbage, recycling, and glass, the police and the tape were gone. It was very quiet in the Place du Marché aux Légumes. Wonder what happened??

le jeudi 21 juin 2018 – Thursday June 21, 2018

It is cool today even though the sun is shining. Phil wore a jacket when we walked to take care of some errands.


walked through Saint-Servan in the morning, the library

One of our errands was to stop at the tabac for the local newspapers. There were 3 different articles in the paper about the police existence yesterday. Apparently someone accidentally left a piece of luggage near some benches. The police were called, apartment buildings, restaurants, and bars were evacuated. Then the robotic bomb removal machine was brought from Nantes. The whole area was blocked off for 3 hours. The robot took photos and the locked bag contained makeup and toiletries. A lot of excitement and expense for nothing. Better to be safe than sorry.

Tonight is the Fete de la Music in France. Since 2008 this longest night of the year according to the Solstice (sunrise at 6h05 and sunset at 22h15) is celebrated with a variety of music. There are stages and tents set up all over town with music beginning at 18h00 and lasting until 0h30. The predicted high temperature is 17 C so, everyone will need jackets.

le vendredi 22 juin 2018 – Friday June 22, 2018

It was quite cool this morning. The fruit and vegetables vendor Monsieur Alix continues to help Sandy with correct French pronunciation when ordering fruits and vegetables in the market. The oranges we are buying come from Portugal. The salad, carrots, potatoes are from “down the road.” The melon is from Spain and the strawberries are from here in Brittany. No wonder they all taste divine!!

We wanted to return to the Bricorama hardware store to purchase 3 additional drapery pull rods. They made opening the drapes so easy, we wanted to attach them to the other window coverings. A short bus ride, 7,50 Euros at the hardware store and we were back in our apartment.

In the afternoon we took a bus to the end of la Digue. We checked the opening hours on the Fish and Chips restaurant in Rochebonne in case we wanted to have lunch there on Sunday. Then we walked out to the digue. It was high tide around 15h30 and there were several people attempting to ride the waves on surfboards. It was VERY windy!! A lovely walk with clear sky, no clouds at all, and sunny. Breathing in the clean fresh air is wonderful! The air here always surpasses freshly cut grass and hog confinement farms of the Midwest.

le samedi 23 juin 2018 – Saturday June 23, 2018

Again, it is cool, but the forecast is for a much warmer week. This is the first day Sandy has worn shorts.

We took a #2 bus to the La Découverte stop by the big Intermarche. Then walked through the pedestrian tunnel to avoid the round-about and walked 10 minutes to reach a flea market. It was sponsored by another charitable organization. They had clothing, furniture, a lot of glassware, dishes, household appliances, linen for the home etc. Sandy was looking at curtains for our bedroom windows. She found several pairs that would work but needed two identical pair. It might be difficult to find something used when she wants them to match. It was an interesting and new spot for us.

Alain called in the afternoon to say he was playing boules. We walked to the boules court and took our beach chairs. After greeting Alain and his wife we took our chairs down towards the harbor to sit in the sun. Even after 15h00 the sun was very strong and Sandy only lasted 15 minutes in the sun. We moved under one of the shade trees and watched the boats and people come and go. It’s surprising the difference in temperature between sun and shade here. It feels like there is at least a 10 degree difference.


young gull walking around the harbor

le dimanche 23 juin 2018 – Sunday June 24, 2018

Sandy brought home la flûte Gana (baguette) and a delicious pain aux raisins for breakfast.  La Maison Du Pain does have wonderful bread and treats.

At around 11h30 we took the number 3 bus to the Rousse bus stop in Paramé.  We then walked 1/2 mile to the Fish and Chips resto in Rochebonne we had checked out the other day.  Of course we had fish and chips which were very good.

We then took a walk on the digue, enjoying the sun, surf and people.


children playing rugby on the beach


had lunch at the fish and chip resto in Rochebonne by the digue

We have checked out the pigeon nest.  There is only one squab, the other must have died.  It is getting bigger and its feathers are turning a much darker color.  Hopefully in the next week or so it will be ready to leave the nest.


one squab is still growing

le semaine se terminant le dimanche 17 juin 2018 – the week ending Sunday June 17, 2018


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le samedi 9 juin 2018 – Saturday June 9, 2018

We had arrived in Saint-Malo on the 27th of May with our friends Caron and Donna.  While they were here we had the pleasure of showing them around Saint-Malo, so we did not perform all our normal housekeeping.  But they had left on the 6th of June, so we were starting to settle into a routine.

In the morning it is raining and the forecast is for an all day rain. We had hoped to attend a flea market but changed our minds. The flea market was to be held at a former middle school which required a 15 minute bus ride then a 6 minute walk. We preferred to stay at home and dry. Phil worked on our blog and Sandy washed all of the windows on the inside.

Washing the outside of the windows was on hold.  When we left last September we left the geranium planters on the balcony.  While we were gone a pigeon decided to make a nest in one of the planters.  She must have made the nest just a week or two before our return. In any case, when we pulled back the curtains on our arrival on May 27th to look at the balcony we saw this pigeon on the nest.  The pigeon had a mate and at certain intervals they exchanged places sitting on the eggs.  Sandy spotted the mate because one bird was a bit white and the other much darker. During one exchange Sandy saw there were two eggs in the nest.  We decided to try to not disturb the nest and to stay off the balcony.  According to Wikipedia,  it takes about 3 weeks for the eggs to hatch.

So by now the pigeon was on the nest for two to two and a half weeks.  The outside windows will have to wait for the pigeon family to finish their business.

pigeon parent on far left of the planter

pigeon parent on far left of the planter

le dimanche 10 juin 2018 – Sunday June 10, 2018

Foggy conditions with a light drizzle this morning.  This is the 3rd or 4th day of early morning fog rolling in from the sea. Our friend Alain and his wife Marie-Yvonne were our guests for lunch today. They met us at the Brasserie Armoricaine at 12h30.

Sandy had a nice 3 course lunch which included a starter (entrée in French) of crudities which consists of cubed pickled beets, grated carrots in a vinaigrette, lettuce leaves, sliced tomatoes, diced cucumbers in a vinaigrette, diced purple cabbage all arranged on the same plate. It is very pretty to look at and delicious to eat.

starter of crudities

starter of crudities

Her main dish (plat in French) was roasted pork with diced potatoes and broccoli. For dessert she chose chocolate mousse.

Phil had the same entrée as Sandy but had turkey in a mushroom sauce for his plat dish. He had floating island for dessert.

Our friends are patient when we speak French and don’t worry if we make mistakes. They speak slowly to us and it helps Sandy understand almost all of the conversation. Everyone had a very good meal and experience at the Armoricaine.

By around 17h00, the sun was shining and the sky was blue. A very enjoyable day despite the morning fog. Later in the evening, Sandy noticed the bird from the nest on our balcony fly away. She looked at the planter and discovered two yellow mustard colored chicks. Apparently the two eggs from Friday or Saturday had hatched! It’s odd that the chicks have yellow feathers when the pigeon parents are gray, blue, and black.


two squabs – baby pigeons

le lundi 11 juin 2018 – Monday June 11, 2018

It is a difficult day for us. Today would have been David’s 40th birthday. Some days are much more difficult than others, today is one of the more difficult ones.

We decided to take the bus to E.Leclerc, the hyper supermarket. We were looking for a few items that aren’t available at the other stores and trying to keep busy. Sandy bought chili beans at this store in 2016, but couldn’t find them last year or this year. When she makes chili, she now uses haricot rouge (red beans).

The forecast has changed from rain all day to cloudy all day. It is still jacket weather but umbrellas aren’t needed. We walked out to the harbor later in the afternoon and the temperature had dropped. Even Phil was too cool to be outside for long. Of course, he had on a short-sleeved shirt and no jacket. Sandy wore two jackets. On the way back to the apartment we stopped in the Place du Marché aux Légumes and took a picture of the newly planted flower beds.


 new flower beds in the Place du Marché aux Légumes

We stayed inside for the remainder of the day.


le mardi 12 juin 2018 – Tuesday June 12, 2018

The temperature was 14 C, in the 50s F. The forecast is for sun, we shall see. It stayed cloudy all day and was a very difficult day for both of us.

le mercredi 13 juin 2018 – Wednesday June 13, 2018

We awoke to lovely sunshine and a temperature around 16 C, middle to upper 50’s F.

We took a #8 bus to the Kennedy stop along the beach. Then we walked back on the digue du Sillon. The digue is a walk-able breakwater which is really beautiful! There were a lot of runners running on the concrete and the sand. The tide was very low and way out so a lot of beach was available. We noticed several large mansions were being painted or being repaired. Probably the “rich” getting ready for the summer season.

english lesson and beach exploring for students

english lesson and beach exploring for students

le jeudi 14 juin 2018 – Thursday June 14, 2018

We took the bus to the Rocabey stop and walked the 3 blocks to the Intermarche grocery store. Last week, Sandy wanted to buy a demi-baguette (half of a baguette) and we couldn’t find the bread section. The location where we expected to find the bread was empty. But today, the bread and bakery section were in front of the store just to the right of the opening. They previously sold magazines in the same space. We didn’t want any bread, but at least we know where it is. The empty space from last week, the former bread aisle, is now the International Food section.

In the afternoon we went to Studio 3 for hair cuts. Our friend Marie Dominique from the Quic en Groigne Hotel recommended this hairdresser. We were very pleased with our hair cuts. So, we now have a new coiffure (hairdresser) for the rest of the summer.

le vendredi 15 juin 2018 – Friday June 15, 2018

We walked uphill through Saint-Servan to the La Roseraie Sainte Anne. Sandy had taken Caron and Donna there about 10 days ago. Not too many roses were in bloom at that time. Today there were many more roses in bloom than last time. It is a gorgeous spot to view flowers and reflect.


La Roseraie Sainte-Anne

On our way down the hill we stopped at the marché to purchase meat.

Back at our apartment, Sandy’s phone showed she had walked almost 8000 steps. She’d walked to the boulangerie and back and to our local marché for fruits and vegetables.

After lunch we walked along the ocean towards the Sillon Beach. We missed a delivery of a package on Wednesday and we needed to pick it up at the local depot. The wind was blowing and since we were walking in the shade it was very cool. The temperature was 16 C, 58 F. The pickup point was a Tabac/Presse (tobacco-newsstand shop). After retrieving the package we returned to the boules court to see if Alain was playing. We didn’t see him, so after watching a few minutes we found a bench at the harbor.

Today was to be a “Grande Marée” (high tide) day with a coefficient of 102. Six hours before the high tide, there is a corresponding low tide about 6 hours earlier. All of the boats in the harbor were sitting in sand and the boat ramp was completely out of the water. We watched a white crane, sea-gull, and cormorant all fishing for a late afternoon snack. The temperature was much warmer in the sun!

In the evening around 21h00 we walked out to see the high tide.  It was interesting, but without a wind there was not much really going on at the wall.


high tide, see the water marks on the wall, but not really much to see


le samedi 16 juin 2018 – Saturday June 16, 2018

We had read in our local newspaper that there was to be a large braderie (flea market) in Paramé today. It is sponsored by the Secours Association (charitable association) in Saint-Malo. They advertised new clothing, shoes, purses, suits, glassware, household items, games, toys, books, and CD’s. They opened at 9h00. Since it was a beautiful sunny day, though cool, we decided to go. We arrived just before 11h00. There was a line of 25 people at the door.  We realized the line was because there was a limit as to how many people could be in the building at one time. We waited in line about 5 minutes and the door opened. A volunteer counted the number of people he allowed inside and closed the door just before it was our turn. In another 5 or 6 minutes, the door again opened and we were included in the 20 people allowed inside. It was packed with people!!

We spotted a brand new still in the package cheese grater. It was a French brand of kitchen items that we like called Moulinex that is good quality. Sandy spotted a vase and a volunteer wrote out a ticket for us. Two items for 3 euros. The check out line was a little long. Phil got in line while Sandy tried to look at some of the tablecloths and men’s shirts. She was trying to find a blue striped “Brittany” shirt for men. She gave up not being able to squeeze through all of the people. She did see a dressing room with a very long line. All of the clothing had new tags on them and were donated by local stores. She found a striped short sleeve shirt for herself and purchased it without trying it on.

Next we walked across the street to a charcuterie (delicatessen) that Sandy saw earlier in the month. They had gratin de crabe in the window along with many other tasty looking items. They were very busy and after waiting in line a bit, we bought two gratin de crabe. The actual crab shell was used as a dish to hold the gratin.

Our friend Alain phoned after lunch and Sandy answered. She doesn’t like to have to speak French on the phone but managed to understand and answer.  He was going to play boules in 5 minutes and did we want to come and watch? We said yes!

The weather had changed significantly! It was cloudy with a strong cold wind straight out of the south and everyone was bundled up. We didn’t stay too long.

The crab was already cooked and just needed to be warmed in the oven for 15 minutes.


gratin de crabe

We ate the crab as a entrée for dinner.


le dimanche 17 juin 2018 – Sunday June 17, 2018

Sandy shopped for our breakfast at her normal boulangerie, La Fournee Malouine.  There was a sign saying the boulangerie would be closed for a vacation starting tomorrow and reopening on Wednesday 28 June at 7h00. The boulangère made sure Sandy saw the sign. She is a very nice lady.

Around noon we took a walk around the ramparts to get some exercise.  It was cool but still a very nice day.


The harbor during our walk on the ramparts.