A Weekend in the beautiful French countryside. Free wine, great food and fantastic surroundings. Oh yeah, and the wedding between Chris and Muriel.
I've been in France before.
I run a marathon in Paris 3 years ago, I visited the city with friends, school and family and before all this London business my French was ok. I studied it for few years but like for any other language, the less you use it the more you forget.
I tried to remember some French words, to expand my vocabulary, but I was stuck with Pinot, Merlot, Thierry Henry and Voulez-vous (danser, coucher) avec moi. Well, I though was enough for my trip. At least I could make an effort and try to understand the people around me.
I was expecting a French environment with few English guys coming from England to support Chris on his way to a new life. Instead, I was surrounded by fantastic French Americans families. A big expanded family with members capable or switching from French to American English in the middle of the conversation. We'll talk about that later.
The trip to Tours was already long. Well, now I'm laughing thinking about it, because it seems like I'll be back home on Monday now. Only 24 hours later than planned.
Wake up call at 5.00. London has been under another terrorist attack just the day before, so to avoid problems with the tube, I had to jump on some bus and get to Liverpool Street. Once in Stansted, just in time to board my flight, everything seemed going easily enough. Once in Tours my brilliant idea was to rent a car and drive around to get to the different locations.
The airport of Tours was incredibly tiny, and probably the Ryanair flight from London was one of the few planes landing here. With such a tiny airport my chances to get a car were smashed. The three big rental companies had a total of maybe 20 cars available, and they were all gone for the weekend.
I decided to get to the city centre hoping to improve my (slim) chances to rent a car, but a conference about something emptied the roaster of the two rental companies. I had to wait 2 hours t get that information though.
The French like to make the siesta between 12.00 and 14.00 and everything was shut down.
I jumped on the first train and I arrived in the same station where I am typing now, and fortunately Chris' sister collected me and gave me a lift.
It was a sunny day. Today it rains. How fast things change. Back then I was wearing my favorite pair of underwear (you know, when you have a big ass and you move a lot finding a pair of suitable underwear it is very difficult) while just last night I realized I left them in the church, in a Tesco plastic bag. And my bottom doesn't feel as comfortable as before. Damn it.