I slept in today. It is very relaxing here and Monique and Michel are excellent relaxed hosts. I keep thinking it is like Queensland. The weather is sultry, very hot and humid. It is a great place to relax before I return home to Melbourne. I am speaking French still and enjoying learning the French way of life.
Michel and I went to the market this morning for fruit and then later to the patisserie for a Paris Brest, chocolate eclairs, triple choc slice and a Dax pistachio slice. All of which I was so busy ogling I didn’t take pictures!We also needed a fuse for the aircon in the car which we found at an AutoBarn type of place.
After we returned we had champagne aperitif, tomato salad with home grown tomatoes, followed by a scrumptious courgette and cheese flan, ravioli for Emma, chicken and potato tortilla, then cheese ( about 5 choices) and green salad, followed by the cakes and fresh fruit. All this was accompanied by fresh bread, and a good Bordeaux red. A great way to ensure a variety of food groups, and vitamins!
As it is really hot we head off to another beach today. About a half hour drive again to Vieux-Boucau-les Bains. This is much more of a beach town with camping, beachy tourist type shops, holiday letting and lots of parking. The beach is over the dunes again but a road and pedestrian path lead straight to it. The surf is much calmer today and the breeze off the water refreshing. We set up our spot on the beach and head for the water. The life guards use a whistle to get people’s attention and several times they make loudspeaker announcements about safety and a lost child. It was comforting and surprising to hear announcements in both English and French. It is a huge expense of beach backed by a saltwater lake. There are a lot of people on surfboards but not too many can stand and they don’t seem to sit in the water waiting for the right wave like at home, but just catch any white water they can. It isn’t great surf but there are some good curves every now and again. I note a couple of Australian surf brands rip curl and billabong. It is great watching people. This little guy in the rip curl onesy was too cute to miss.
I am impressed with the European body confidence. There are a few very big girls today in bikinis and lots of in between sizes. All ages and sizes wear bikinis which I like too. Everyone seems comfortable in their skin and there is a lot of it. People are sunbaking with not too many hats either. They change unselfconsciously at the beach as well. It makes Australians seem very coy.
We are home again by about 5:30 and it is soon time to eat again. Emma is always starving of course and I have just accepted this is the French way. It may not be as large as lunch but we still have the whole five courses. When I forget myself and think I will just have the fruit I am told to wait. There is more, beef stew with rice and potatoes followed by cheese, salad and dessert. It is not large but it is all delicious. I will need to start walking again soon!
Another relaxing day. I just say I am in recovery from all my walking. I am seriously impressed with Monique who runs every morning. She walks really fast too. I am inspired by her energy and she is a few years older than me. She used to run marathons and when she stopped at 50 she and Michel took up ballroom dancing. Michel takes amazing photos and he has created two picture books of their Via de la Plata Camino in 2015. Some of the photos are exceptional and we both agree it was a beautiful walk.