St. Malo (or maybe it was just the mussels) has induced me into a sense of complete restfulness. The day has been jam-packed with visual stimulation, emotional contentment, exercise and it has made me a bit tired. I am longing for quietness and time spent relaxing doing nothing.
We have made a reservation at a farmhouse not far from St. Malo. I am so craving the remoteness of it all, though I am a bit apprehensive as to how to get to it. The owner has given us what seems to be an address. Our GPS seems quite confused but we head in that direction and… do not find it. We are on roads where only farmland sees us go and come and go and come back again. GPS has given up on us and and we on her. I text the owner in French on our French sim card/phone (so glad we have one) and he answers “My dear, not an address. It’s the name of the farm.” So on our way we see another farmhouse with people outside. I get out and ask and they in turn ask me “Ah, you are the Australians that are going to stay at Dominque’s?” Yes… I mean no. Where is the farm? Don’t know how, but we reach it thanks to the actual Aussie at the wheel and guidance from above.
I am immediately in love. The farmhouse attached to the main house is rustic but just exactly where I want to be. The owner and an English-speaking friend are outside to greet us. A little fox terrier that can’t be dirtier and smellier if he tried is coming down the road. Dominique introduces us to him. It’s the neighbor’s dog that comes to sleep with him to keep him company. We are invited into Dominique’s home where he gives us a proud grand tour. He has built it all by himself. Even his Japanese garden is designed and planted by him. The dog is trembling and I ask if he is cold. No. He has Parkinson. A pang of remembrance of my mom and her disease hits me. Is this a sign of some sort? My heart skips and I do not refuse the dog when he cuddles up to me, no matter how badly he smells. We have tea. We learn about my host. I am charmed. He has escaped the rat race after years with a company as their graphic artist. He also suffered a devastating loss. This is how he copes. His visiting friend is building a cabin on the property and easing himself into farm life; he’s a commercial director.
We settle in for the night. The bedroom is on the second floor and quirky and fun. To go up you open a “door” that is technically on the floor. And the bedroom has a lamp made by the owner (as most of the farmhouse). With a typewriter that reminds me that I write. And a window that looks out to the garden and the cows, and the pasture and… I’m going to bed now.
We are leaving today and I just want to enjoy every single moment of this peaceful feeling this farmhouse gives me.
I visit the cows and they are more curious about me than I of them. I am thankful for the electric fence that separates us!
I go to the room and pack. As I go downstairs at the doorway are two sets of rubber boots! Dominique is outside and he tells me that the boots are just in case we want to take a stroll in the back. The weeds are overgrown and it may be wet so he brought us boots. Since I am not going to take him up on this offer he takes me around his garden. I so want to stay but we are continuing on today to Cap Frehel and Fort La Latte. We say our good-byes.
The water is crystal clear in places.
Forts of all kinds as well as walled cities fascinate me. Something comforting about a place that protects itself from the outside world attracts me. I choose to not think of the reason why a wall and such strong edifices are needed in the first place. The approach to the fort is almost soothing. You pass the caretaker’s home and continue down the path to the fort. And here it is. We enter through a drawbridge. And as soon as we do there are cannons and other instruments of war/protection. This is a bricole The water is crystal clear here too. The vegetation is so pretty.
And the view from one of the towers is exquisite.
Once on the ground these daisies along the fence do a lot to keep a smile on my face.
We have made a reservation at a hotel in Sene: Chambres D’Hotes Villa Sahara. When we arrive it looks more like a house than a hotel. Parking lot empty. Note on door: “If you arrive please call this number and someone will be here soon.” We had paid through a website already so I call the number. Yes, her son will be there soon. He arrives and hurriedly opens the door, tells us he needs to go back to the rugby game. Shows us the room and gives us the key. Oh, and we are the only guests so we can consider the place ours. So we own a B&B for a night. 🙂 The key ring that he gave us even has an “L” on it. In the morning we wake up to people coming in to make us breakfast and promptly leaving just to return before we leave onto our next destination!