Friday, August 26, 2011

Adventures in the making

Having been vaguely reminded that I haven't really updated for a while, I feel compelled to explain that this is largely due to a lack of adventures. I have some in the works, but the last few weeks have been consumed by work dramas and people dramas which aren't actually mine to blog about. However, next week I will be going back to Dinard early next week, then the following week to Paris, and then I'm due to be gainfully unemployed again, so off to the South (Avignon I believe) for a holiday with some friends before returning to the wonderful world of looking for new job. The way I say that implies that I haven't already started looking, which isn't strictly true, I have, but it's hard to look in earnest when you work 12 hours a day, and all you want to do on your days off is get out of the house.

In other news, I moved rooms in the castle. I no longer have to deal with a toilet that you can't flush toilet paper down, but I also no longer have a shower. Well, that's a lie. I do have a shower here, it's just that it is one of those hose-pipe, hold in your hand affairs, over the bath, and there is no form of barrier to keep the water contained. Thus I must bath every night and then just torture myself with some sort of cold-water holding the shower-head over my hair thing in the morning. It isn't ideal. Also, my bed in this room sucks. It looks awesome, but is awful to actually sleep on. And it squeaks. Why did I swap my essentially comfortable room for this thing a floor lower and just across from the childrens playroom, preventing me sleeping in on my mornings off? Well, it has an internet connection. It's prettier too, but mostly it has internet. If only it was going to be more than a few days. Ah well. I might post pictures of this room, it's really quite nice.

Back to work...

Thursday, August 18, 2011


Turns out that drinking wine and then going for a swim while the stars come out is awesome :-) Even if they are strange, Northern Hemisphere stars.

Apparently I'm going to Paris next week, should be cool. Not that I will really have time to see the sights, but still, I will see some of it.

Oh and off to the South somewhere for a holiday in September, middle-end-ish of September, then Eurostar back to London. If I read the ticket correctly then I will be on a train for for 14 hours at one point.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Dinard ("Dinarrr-eh!")

Dinard is a resort town on the North coast of France in Bretagne (Brittany), and it far exceeded expectations. I was told Brittany was wet and cold, and that it wasn't anywhere near as good as the South of France, and that it was similar to holiday towns in Cornwall in England. Having never been to Cornwall (I know, major failing really, given my heritage) this wasn't very helpful. But it turned out to be really lovely, as the pictures should show. Unfortunately my limited comprehension of French was quite a hinderance here, I could see enough tourist trash to realise it seemed to have some Piratical history, but of course I couldn't understand anything written about it. It did have a piratical feel though, with cliffs and rocks with little coves and possible caves and tunnels up to the houses at the top of the cliffs- I was put in Famous Five mode!!! It was pretty cool. And not only did it have awesome rocky bits, but also a sandy beach, where I first dipped my toes into the Atlantic! It was really strange sand though, it sparkled like gold flakes when the sun was at the right angle!!! And it stuck like glue, really impossible to get off without showering, not like normal sand that you can rub off with a towel.

A very charming town, picturesque, and with ice-cream stalls in all the right places :-D

The only bad part of my trip was that I screwed my back part way through, and spent several days rather incapacitated before being tortured by a French doctor, and half killing myself with anti-inflammatories before being able to even do up my shoelaces. But at least the painful experience with the French doctor seems to have been worthwhile, I appear to be fixed.

In other news, contrary to an earlier post, I will be staying in France for a while yet, hopefully the rest of the summer, all going to plan. But as we all know, my plans are subject to change at short notice and on the whims of others, so really, I have no idea. In theory I'm here for another 5-6 weeks roughly. Earn some money, avoid snakes, and maybe go back to Dinard.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Foreign experiences...

I saw a snake today- a viper it would seem.

It sounds ridiculous, but I actually couldn't recognise it as a snake for a few moments, maybe a couple of seconds. I thought it was a slow-moving lizard, then I realised it had no legs, and briefly thought of a worm (child's concept of a worm mind), or some sort of insect. Then I realised that, like, holy shit, it's a snake! It was a little one, maybe a foot long, and not much thicker than a pencil, and then it was disappearing into the leaves, and a crack in the wall. In the old stables building across the driveway from the main castle.

Sooooo never letting the children touch piles of logs again!!!!!!!!!

Kinda cool, fascinating that they actually are pretty close to a child's picture of what they might look like though, squiggly line which appears to move forward without moving at all. More than a little surreal.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Some new adventures, coming right up!

So, suffice to say the job was rubbish and I have now given notice. I should be out of here in about a weeks time, and I won't be sorry to go. It has been interesting to live in a castle in France, certainly, but there are some things I just can't tolerate, and a hostile work environment is up there.

So instead I will finish out this week, then it will be off to explore France! We haven't organised an itinerary yet, but we are looking at Bordeaux, Marseille, Ummm some other places in the south... Cannes, then up to Paris, and will get the Eurostar from Paris to London. Hooray Eurostar!!! Chunnel! Lol that is something to look forward to at least :-D So is getting out of here.

Pictures of Dinard coming soon I promise. Just as soon as I have time and energy. Currently I have an adventure to plan ;-)

Monday, August 1, 2011

Never again will I travel without insurance

Not that I am actually suffering the consequences of not having insurance, but having screwed my back somewhere I can't speak the language, and in a lot of pain, without a European health card, I am acutely aware of how precarious my situation actually is.

So, hot French doctor says I have an inflamed lumbar region and has prescribed some apparently heavy painkillers, as well as anti-inflammatorys, and pills to protect my stomach from the anti-inflammatorys. He made me cry in front of my boss by poking me in the back (hence heavy-duty painkillers).

Curious Sam is currently in the process of becoming seriously drugged up in a resort town on the North coast of France. At least I can lie on the beach I suppose. My exploring plans are looking rather improbable at this point.