There is nothing like fresh french bread with butter and honey or a big glob of nutella (chocolate-hazelnut spread) to start the day off right. This campsite is so great, we decided to stay another day. The owners have a beautiful vegetable garden, a flower garden where we can sit in the shade, free internet access, and they even lent us a table and chairs to use at our campsite! The bathroom block is painted a cheery pale yellow and on it are hung watercolor paintings and photographs of the canal. Everything is so aesthetically pleasing here! Everyone is really friendly too; we met a retired couple from the Netherlands (I think) who were biking the canal from Brest to Nantes.
Tyler was hard at work this morning when I decided to walk to town to go to the market. I was so excited that we were in the right place at the right time, for markets are one of my favorite things in the world. I love just wandering slowly through the stalls and admiring all the scents and colorful fruits and vegetables to buy. I was going to leave, and tell Tyler on the way out, as he was at the entrance of the campsite sitting in the shade using the free internet connection to get his work done. He was so bummed about missing out on all the fun, that he quickly wrapped up his work and packed up the computer, eager to join me on my little outing.
Together we headed out of the campsite and walked along the tree-lined canal until we arrived in the center of the bustling little market town of Chateaulin. This must be a haven for ex-pats, for there are British people everywhere!
Tyler and I walked through the market, tasting melons and dried strawberries, and even a sauce made of seaweed. The lady making crepes shouted to passersby that they should try them, and the lady selling the artichokes boasted about hers being the best artichokes in Brittany! We ended up buying a watermelon and a "melon"—a smaller, sweeter, more delicious version of a cantelope.
We walked back home, and I prepared a feast for lunch while Tyler got back to work. We had bread, Coulommiers cheese, saussisson, melon, and salad with lettuce fresh from the garden here. I even added sugar to what juice was left in our little plastic lemon, making us a refreshing bottle of lemonade. For dessert, we had squares of hazelnut-filled dark chocolate. YUM!
After our late lunch, we chatted with the kids online. I've said it before but it bears repeating, it is always wonderful getting caught up with Tyler's little brothers and sisters! We miss them so much :( After talking with them, Tyler got back to work, while I used the spacious clothes-washing area to hand-wash our cycling shorts and shirts.
When I was through, I went to join Tyler in the garden, and I sat with him drawing flowers in my sketchbook while he chatted with clients. When he was through we talked and decided that we wanted to stay yet another night. Tyler went to pay and order another loaf of bread and some croissants for our breakfast, then went get dinner all ready. While he was off of the computer I had some time to send a few emails and poke around online. I found a map with all of the canal routes in France. If we so choose, we could conceivably cycle along canal paths the whole time we're in here!
When I went back to our little corner of the campsite, Tyler had cleaned up the tent and prepared a wonderful dinner. We ate it sitting on chairs at a real table. This little bit of normal life that we do without 99% of the time was a real treat, and made me feel a little bit more "normal" even as I was wielding a bowie knife to spread butter on my bread.