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Flunching in France 7 June 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — Julianne Dodds @ 8:21 PM
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I think I’ve fallen a little behind on what’s been going on lately. Some of those events will not be posted, but some of them are appropriate for my grandparents to read about.

Bern, Switzerland

Bern, Switzerland

After spending a couple days in Innsbruck I headed east to Bern, Switzerland. Nice city, but so expensive. I spent the next day in Interlaken at the country’s oldest hostel, which also happens to be the partiest place I’ve stayed so far. And I did my fair share of participation in that partying, spending the next day hung over in a hammock.

With some time to kill before heading back to France and some blank slots on my railpass, I shot over to Amsterdam for a day. It was great going back to that first city, to my first hostel, after five months of wandering. I felt triumphant and was amazed at how different the city felt in the spring. I was also surprised that I had no trouble finding my way around, and even when I wandered aimlessly my feet instinctively lead me back to familiar places.  A guy who worked at the hostel remembered me from before. In a small sense it felt like going home.

Even better was the return to France. Before, Jason and I had been staying at his friend’s house while he worked on the one he was buying, but this time we were actually staying in Chateau Le Vignaud. Part of the roof was missing, and there was neither electricity nor plumbing, but it felt so good to be there. My first morning we went down to the lake and I took a bath while Jason washed clothes, filling a basin with lake water and soap and stomping on our clothes like he was making wine. I have to say, I’ve never seen his socks so clean. I got to spend some quality girl time with Gigi, in which we cut each other’s hair and gave ourselves pedicures.

Gigi and Jason grilling pizza

Gigi and Jason grilling pizza

Well, I’m going to have to really gloss over this part and hopefully fill in some details later, but then I went to Paris for a week where I met my dad, on vacation with his wife, her brother, and his wife. I think we all had a pretty good time and it was definitely nice to see my dad relax for a few days.

We all had a picnic under the Eiffel Tower

We all had a picnic under the Eiffel Tower

Now I’m back in Gueret with Jason, Gigi, and our British mate Dirty Darren. Last night Jason hit his head on a brick and probably gave himself a concussion. I had to hold him up and then set him down in a chair, and clean up the blood on his face. But it was getting dark, and there’s no phone, and I can’t drive his standard car, and I didn’t know what to do. I know when you have a concussion you’re not supposed to sleep, but I didn’t know what else to do with him besides help him upstairs to bed and hope he didn’t die in his sleep.

The next morning he was still alive so we drove over to Gigi‘s house. After I took a shower at her place, Dirty Darren came over and took Gigi and I over to the Giant Labyrinth, supposedly the world’s largest hedge maze. It took us about 45 minutes and a bottle of wine, but the three of us totally showed those Frenchies how it’s done.  Afterwards Gigi and I played a rousing game of giant checkers, shared a crepe and the biggest stick of cotton candy I’ve ever seen in my life, and pet the ponies.

The labyrinth!

The labyrinth!

Girly love in the labyrinth

Girly love in the labyrinth

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We needed a break at this point so we went back to her apartment and watched a movie. After 2 hours of a Bollywood movie (there were a couple bottles of wine in there too) we were all hungry, so we let Darren take us over to Flunch.

We’d been hearing about this place from Darren and his parents for months. Flunch is a chain of family-friendly buffet restaurants, and we’re pretty sure it’s an abbreviation of “fucking lunch” as in “I’m eating my fucking lunch!” Just like in the labyrinth, we showed the Frenchies the right way to Flunch.  I’m not sure if we’re welcome back at this particular franchise location, but we all enjoyed our weekend.

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