Sunday, 27 October 2013

2nd - 10th September at Montargis

We spent 2 nights at our free, brico & cinema, mooring that did not merit a picture! Other things did tho', the symbol of civic pride first, followed by their great show of flowers:
They even put them in boats anchored in their many streams:
But every now and then someone gets right in the way of a really good picture:
Then on the morning of the 4 we set off on our second, and much longer cycle ride (we bought the route plans from the local tourist office) :
That's an old mill (no, not millstone, it's behind her);  we did this trip again a few times, once on foot with some lovely friends we made at Montargis, because there's a very good and economical restaurant at the destination.  Along the way we kept seeing strange black patterns in the canal, everywhere, just that day;  we assumed they were tadpoles, but no, they had a full set of fins.  Any ideas?
It was on the way back that we met our to-become friends, and they encouraged us to whizz back and take up the newly vacated space on this sought-after spot, right in the heart of the lovely town of Montagis.  So we  dashed back, but there was a catch.  We'd an appointment with another vet because Bollinger had also picked up a nasty, compuslive sneezy thing;  It was a very hot day, and the vet was a long, long, long way off.  We considered a taxi, but time was now more important.  So this time it was my turn to do the stupid transport, carrying him in his basket while cycling.  In theory I was just going to rest his basket on the centre bar, but that was too slow for the appointment.  So I cycled it - fast - Nik couldn't keep up.  My right arm ached like fury after, but we were at the vets quite early in the end, and she saw Bolly; gave him pills for his cold, wouldn't give him any other vaccine because of his infection, and told us he had to have a booster from one of the vaccines done at Champagne sur Seine!  More complications.  Anyhow, we made it back, quickly left the mooring for the short trip but 2 locks, hoping the space would still be there! :
See, a floating garden centre and herb garden:
See, no hands!  Oh, we're in a lock that's why.
So we reached the mooring we were to be at (or Archangel anyway) for over a month, until we left on 8th October!  The mooring looked like this:
The mooring was pretty secure since it was not only looked after by the local police, who visited every day at least once, but they also managed it and took the money!  So now we had become residents, we began to explore the prettiest parts of the centre:
Sorry about the tramp blocking in the shorts.  Behind us is the Pecherie restaurant, who do a really good 3 course meal, fishy of course, but excellent quality and presentation, and good value.  Nik was there:
Well, to be honest, we both were - this one (rarely) taken by the camera - not good at composition tho':
Near the museum (which we didn't visit this time as we were saving it for a rainy day, that never came) there were some ruins (out of pure self-interest, I'll try to curb my comments to the facts only):
Now, in case you think this existence is easy, just look at what we have to face, day in, day out, such torment!:
Not quite sure whether to eat it or frame it!  There were lots of shops making these works of pop art fantasy which, allegedly, are wonderfully edible.  To be honest, we never got past the patisserie's and a few tarts (watch it!). Then Saturday is Market Day, and this, our first here, was invaded (I mean, really it was) by a dominant and drum banging mob of circus artists:
I've never seen stilt walkers so tall, nor dancing wildly, nor trying to pull one another over;  they were truly astonishing!  So the next day we felt the need to visit their circus (our trusty bikes, it was quite a cycle) and see what they were publicising;  it was a kind of festival of circus skills, plus musical and poetry performers, food, drink, etc.  here was one amazing performer - you had to be there!
This lady was a very capable acrobat and on the ropes, rings, etc., but made amazing facial expressions as she got herself into all sorts of (planned) fixes, and made as tho' she didn't know how to get out of them.  I think the children were a bit bemused - I think it suited the adults more!

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