A very short blog post so you can view the parade.
Sandy and I took a little trip to the Paramé section of Saint-Malo last Sunday, July 7. We watched the 2019 Folklores du Monde parade. It was quite nice. Most of the groups from outside of France had only a couple of musical instruments as they are mainly dance groups. The French groups from around Brittany have a very Celtic theme and are marching bands. Many bagpipes, drums and small pipes.
We recorded most of the groups and put together a video of the parade. You can view the video by clicking on the link below. The video is about 9 minutes and 30 seconds in length. The video will open in a new window in your browser.
🇫🇷 HIGHLY RECOMMENDED: If you are reading this blog in your email app you might want to switch to a browser to view it more easily. Just click on the title above (the week ending…). The blog will open in a browser window which will be easier to read and navigate. 🇫🇷 🙂 🇫🇷
You can always click on a photograph to enlarge it for easier viewing.
lundi 1 juillet 2019 – Monday July 1, 2019
Sandy wore a jacket to walk to the boulangerie since the temperature was 15C (59F). The city was quiet and it appeared that many of the visitors from the weekend had departed.
As we left our apartment building we saw a new sea gull (goéland). It still had a lot of downy feathers. When they are ready to leave the nests, which are often on the rooftop of buildings, the parents literally push them over the edge. We have seen them flutter their way to the ground in previous years. They don’t learn to fly for a few weeks after leaving the nest. They are spotted brown in color for two years until they fully mature.
We continue to have problems with car drivers removing the parking posts around our building. Today we took copies of photos showing damaged or missing posts, including the street addresses to the Hôtel de Ville (city hall). We talked to the lady at the reception desk for several minutes. She was very sympathetic. She tried to phone the people she thought would be responsive to our request for repairs, but no one was available. She told us she’d pass on our request.
Next we purchased bus passes for the month of July and headed to Jardiland to look at plants for our new planters. We took photos of several and will talk to our friends about the possibilities.
We took the bus halfway back and walked back on the beach. Our return walk was over 6 kilometers – a great walk. In the afternoon we were invited to Denise and Gilles’ apartment. They served a variety of cookies, peach flavored Coca-Cola, Schweppes agrumes (citrus flavored) and Badoit sparkling water. We enjoyed their conversation and friendship. They return to Paris on Wednesday and don’t plan to return to Saint-Malo until September when it is quiet.
mardi 2 juillet 2019 – Tuesday, July 2, 2019
On our walk back from buying our breakfast croissants, we passed Charlie’s Bar and spotted the waitress named Sophie setting up chairs for the day. This bar is just up the sidewalk-staircase behind our apartment building which leads to the Place du Marché aux Légumes. It’s one of the nicest tree lined spots in Intra-Muros (in the walls) for people watching, or enjoying a beverage. The last two years we loved having a coffee break there. Two years ago, a wonderful waitress named Sophie worked daily and knew our order by heart. Last year Sophie wasn’t working. When we spotted her today she recognized us immediately. We asked her where she was last year. She told us she’d had a baby and in France, paid maternity leave is for one year. The baby was now old enough to leave at the crèche (daycare) and she was back at work.
We picked up fruit at our local market and bought a sweet potato (patate douce) for dinner. It is bright purple on the outside and yellow on the inside. We also bought a box of Gariguette strawberries. They have a distinctive shape and are delicious!
Next we wanted to walk to Saint-Servan to go to the butcher. We had to wait a few minutes for the sliding bridge to close before we could walk across it. We watched 3 sail boats enter the lock (écluse) before we continued our walk. The butcher had a new assistant today (too bad) but the line wasn’t too long. While Phil waited in line, Sandy looked at the many other stalls inside the building. At the fromagerie (cheese shop) she saw Comté cheese which we like. It came in 3 different prices and lengths of aging. The least expensive had been aged 12 months, next in increasing price had been aged 24 months, with the most expensive being aged 30 months. All three of the pieces looked similar to her.
After lunch we watched a boules game. We talked to Alain about Denise returning to Paris tomorrow and told him to knock on our door when he arrived. We’ll help carry their luggage downstairs. A large group of students, about middle school aged, arrived to watch the boules game. The players actually let almost every student try to throw at least one ball. The boules players all agreed that this game didn’t count towards their score.
mercredi 3 juillet 2019 – Wednesday 3 July 2019
We were up early to do some grocery shopping. We walked to the bus, took the bus for 2 stops, walked to the Intermarché grocery store, completed our shopping and returned to our apartment all in an hour. On our way to the store, we spotted 3 new goéland (seagulls). Usually there is only one or two that survive to get pushed from the nest.
While buying canned pineapple today to go with a slice of ham, we learned that canned pineapple in France comes from both Thailand and the Philippines. There wasn’t much difference in price, but the label clearly states where the pineapple comes from. Is it the same in the USA? The store wasn’t crowded and our list wasn’t too large. At 11h, Alain arrived to take Denise and Gilles to the train station. They are returning to Paris today. We were so glad to see them and enjoyed our visits. They don’t plan to return to Saint-Malo until September, after we have departed. Sandy washed windows inside and outside in our bedroom, kitchen, and the shower room. At least the first few layers of salt and dust have been removed.
A taxi from Torino (Turin) Italy parked in front of our building today. It was probably just the owner of the taxi and wife coming here for a visit. Otherwise it was an expensive taxi ride, 693 miles, 1,115 kilometers.
After lunch we watched the boules game for awhile. One of the players congratulated us on the USA women’s football (soccer) win over the French. A lady, Yvonne, shook our hands and said bonjour, and another player, Josette, said bonjour. Another player Philippe, who owns the little white dog named Gavroche, talked to Phil for a few minutes. It’s nice to be acknowledged.
We took a walk on the beach at low tide and came across hundreds of crab shells. We try not to disturb sea creatures on the beach. Some of the crabs had been turned upside down and were empty. They must have been caught between tides. The wind was very strong, over 20 kilometers per hour so we didn’t tarry.
This is the week of the Folklores du Monde. Six countries are invited here to entertain and share their native music and dance. There is a parade through the Intra-Muros each day at 18h. We watched groups from Ghana, Serbia, and Kazakhstan sing, play instruments, and dance. Highly entertaining! It was almost impossible to hear anything over the music.
jeudi 4 juillet 2019 – Thursday 4 July 2019
Happy Fourth of July USA! 🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸
We walked to Rocabey to buy meat from the butcher and look at the plants in the outdoor area of the market. The flower vendor had quite a few geraniums so we bought 3 to put into our new boxes.
Around lunch time the man Phil had hired to clean out our cave (basement storage area) arrived with a helper. They quickly cleaned up the old straw, bags, and other remains from the previous owner.
Sandy left for tutoring and shopping with Christine at 13h20. When she arrived at the bus stop, our neighbor Jean-Michel was there. They greeted each other and Sandy offered her hand to shake as they had in previous times. He said no, “bise” meaning let’s kiss on our cheeks, so he’s officially our friend.
After two hours of French conversation and lessons, Christine took Sandy to Jardiland to purchase our plants. Christine bought a new car in April. It has air conditioning, a sun roof, automatic transmission (almost unheard of here) and it’s a hybrid. It’s a Toyota Yaris and much bigger than her previous car. Very nice. At Jardiland Christine talked to the employees and made sure the plants Sandy had in mind were tolerant of the winter here and would do well in boxes. We loaded up Christine’s car and were on our way home.
Phil met us at the apartment door and he and Sandy carried the plants up using a giant IKEA blue bag.
The city repairmen weren’t quite finished repairing the parking posts. But since we just notified the city of the problems on Monday their presence today was a good sign.
For dinner, Sandy heated the rest of the ham steak with the pineapple from Thailand. Very tasty.
vendredi 5 juillet 2019 – Friday 5 July, 2019
Any early visit to the marché right by the apartment building for fruit and vegetables.
After the marché Sandy put the plants into the boxes. Several people stopped on the street and told us how nice they looked. Even the man sweeping litter from the street stopped to help her sweep up the spilled dirt and said in English “green looks good here”. Let’s hope they last. Too bad we didn’t buy a sprinkling can. Taking water up and down in half liter discarded water bottles takes a long time.
samedi 6 juillet 2019 – Saturday July 6, 2019
The boxes look good this morning and do brighten up our doorway. Phil made meatballs this morning. Delicious!
In the afternoon we watched the boules game for a few minutes then took a nice long walk on the beach. It’s sunny and 23C (73F) and the beach had more people on it than we’d seen this year. All of the parking lots were “complet” (full) so there must be a lot of people around.
In the basin there are a lot of boats from Jersey. They are usually very large cabin cruisers and sail boats. This is one of them.
You might wonder why the tiny island of Jersey, with a population of 100,000, has so many luxury boats. Well it is because Jersey is one of the top FOUR tax havens in the world. There are a lot of wealthy people stashing their money in Jersey.
dimanche 7 juillet 2019 – Sunday July 7, 2019
Today was the final day of the Folklores du Monde. They always hold a grand parade of nations from the Rochebonne beach to the Parc Des Chênes where they each will give a final performance. We’ve attended the final performance a few times but never the parade.
WOW! We watched the almost hour long parade today. You know “you’re not in Kansas” any longer. Very interesting hearing all of the bagpipes, horns, seeing the various costumes and enjoying the humor of others. Interesting to note, as in Holland, MI, where costumes include wooden shoes, some Bretagne groups also wore wooden shoes. However, big difference here was the wooden shoes were trimmed and appeared to be lined in black leather. They also had heals and the toes curled up similar to shoes worn by Jesters. Since this area of France was settled by Celtics, bagpipe playing is popular.
We loved the parade and walked home along the digue (sea wall) since it was high tide and the beach was under the water. A wonderful three and a half hour trip!
How to find all our photos from our visit France, June 9 through June 30.
You can view the album of photos by clicking on the following link. It will open in a new browser window with the photos.