Tuesday, July 28, 2015

July 27, Monday: In and out rain, castle and the best part of my day!

I started out early. Why not? I hardly slept a wink. Was it caffeine or a mind that just wouldn't turn off?

Whatever it was, at 6:30am, I decided to get up. I spent two hours having breakfast, doing a little packing, and working on my journal.

At 9:00, I walked up cardiac hill. Hardly anyone was up and about except for a few early tourists with cameras. By 9:30, I was installed at Cafe???? Where they serve the hottest, the biggest and the best café crème in Dinan. I also had a pain au chocolat.

It was amazing what a difference just 10 minutes made in terms of foot traffic. I was writing, only partly aware, but at some point, all of a sudden, the noise level increased in decibels and by 10am, everything was animated, and it stayed that way all day. Haute saison.

I headed for the tourist board to ask if they would book me a taxi for the 30th at 5:30pm. I will be leaving my little house, the maid - who stopped by this evening - will come in and clean, and I expect the next artist comes in the day after.

I had already made up my mind that today was the day that I would tour the castle. Dinan has a very long history, founded in the year 1000! The castle started 200 - 300 years later.

I took the tour in French as it was starting in 15 minutes. Only about 8 or 10 of us. The young woman spoke very fast French, very fast, and her voice didn't carry in the wind and showers, but she was very nice. I missed a lot, but saw things that I wouldn't have had access to without the tour, like the dungeon and the crypt.

Then, I walked to find my B&B for the night of the 30th. I think I'll only get one B. My train leaves for Dol-de-Bretagne at 7:30am. I am 380 meters from the Gare SNCF and closer to the old city than where I am now.

To go by car, 3km; to go on foot, 2km; but, it would be up cardiac hill's cobbles with wheels. Shades of St. Jean Pied-de-Port. No thanks!

Yesterday, I had a very bad food day: cream tea, and a crépe au chocolat! When I realized that, I said to myself, "You need to get some real food." So I splurged on lunch and had Risotto with Saint Jacques, salad and a little white wine. Ooh la la!!!

I never found a drawing spot today. It was so crowded. So I walked down to the old port and straight to the Mercure to contact Martin. It was only 9:30am in Columbus.

I was falling asleep. It was very hot in the bar. Once we texted and I sent my blogs, I took a walk down that side of the Rance, in the direction of St. Malo. When I decided to walk back to my little house, I discovered that I had walked over 8 miles total today!!!

Of course, now there was sun, and a new crop of boats in the harbor including a big one from Jersey, C.I. I wondered how long that trip would take by motorized yacht.

I worked out some packing stuff, put out fresh paint on my easel for tomorrow, and went out to draw. Of course it was spitting rain. I went back for my rain coat and said, "Hey just go across the street to the gite." I ordered a pint of cider, a small glass of water and a serviette. I got out my paper, pen, brush and Bistre ink from Sennelier and started drawing. On the second drawing, a man brought his son over to see what I was doing. The 10 year old had a sketchbook, too! I asked to see it. We had a great time talking. They live in Sheffield, and the father said they had a place in Cornwall that he thought I'd enjoy painting. I gave them my website address, and he said he'd email me. Me and the kid could go out painting. Sounds great to me. That was a lovely ending to my day.

I thought I'd share this large fireplace from the castle because I think the stones interestingly interlocked in a  beautiful design and color. I also loved the pillars and carvings on both sides. And then, of course, my lunch!

1 comment:

Barb Walker said...

Sounds like another fun day! Did you paint with the boy?