Germany, Iceland, France (& that Bike Race) & England

July, 2005

Brittany: Day 4, Le Mont St Michel

On arrival at Le Mont St Michel we began to wish we had not slept in so much and dithered about the weather conditions for riding. As it happened rain fell as we left for the not too long drive, so this of course justified our choice not to ride.

The Abbey is huge. Centuries of changes, rebuilding and additions have created a monumental structure well worth the 8 euros entry fee and 30 minutes in the queue waiting to buy the entry ticket. Finding information in such popular tourist places was sometimes quite easy - and here there were written 'tours' in several languages, and even audio tours.. all for a small fee of course.

Mixtures of gothic and romanesque architecture, often within the same room, make for an interesting time. Trying to work out which are the old bits and which are the really old bits is fun. Views from the few spaces with clear glass or which are open are magnificent. We saw it at low tide so the ocean was indeed a very long way off - the largest tides in Europe occur here!

Navigating the crowds in the horribly over commercialised and touristy street leading back down form the abbey is very slow indeed. The shops are full of kitch (and we thought only germans did this) though the restaurants look pretty good, if slightly overpriced.

Hoping for a rainy day is someting we do often in Australia, but here it seems a rain day is always just around the corner. At St Malo, on the drive back, the crowds provoked us to agree... "we'll come back on a rainy day". We were pretty sure there would be one, though in a way we rather hoped not.

Finally we found some meat that looked almost as good a we are used to at home - still not great, but at least not all dried up on the edges. So, Fran will cook us some veal in white wine, parsley, mushrooms and cream. Yum!