Wednesday, June 10, 2015

A Relaxing Spring Day

Pages From Jan's Travel Journal: April 14, 2015

I awoke to a beautiful sunny day. Sadly, Darcy had left the house early for the office, but Mathieu and I enjoyed coffee together and then walked across the square to the little bakery for our morning pastries. Mathieu selected a marzipan pig. I chose a raspberry and cream tart. After more coffee to go with our pastries, we set out for a walk along the Loire. Though still early, it had already warmed up enough to leave the jackets at home. We didn't go far, but it was peaceful and lovely down by the river. 

Breakfast pastries.

 A family of geese on the Loire.

Around 11:00, I made my way to the tram, which is a mere three-minute walk from the house. I was headed for the university where I would meet Darcy for lunch. She had packed Bento boxes for us that morning and we planned to eat in the office while chatting with some of Darcy's colleagues. A man on the tram attempted to strike up a conversation with me, but when I explained to him, in my halting French, that I didn't understand, he soon gave up and left me alone.

This is where Darcy's office is located
 at the University of Orléans.

The campus was looking very pretty, with most of the trees leafed out and wildflowers growing haphazardly across the new grass. We had a fun lunch, but soon I had to leave so that my daughter could get back to work. I walked over to Parc Floral, and spent several very pleasant hours wandering in that beautiful botanical garden. It was still a bit early for most of the showy flowers, but I enjoyed the tulips and other early bloomers. I visited the spring, which was quietly flowing as it has been for who knows how long? I stopped at a concession area and ordered a glass of fruit juice, which I sipped while sitting at a lovely shaded table. The cool breeze was refreshing and carried the heavenly scent of flowers. A group of young children, along with their chaperones, went past, giggling and shouting as they pedaled their rented four-wheeled bikes. It looked like a fun way to see the park.

A tree in a basket at Parc Floral.

I met Darcy back at the tram, and we rode home together. Mathieu was waiting for us. We had a little snack and then bundled poor Azur into his cat carrier for a trip to the vet. It was time for his annual shots. He was not a very happy kitty, but he soon settled down once we were home again.

For our evening meal, Darcy cooked a wonderful dish of pasta with roasted chick peas, cauliflower, and broccoli, all seasoned with freshly grated Parmesan. It was delicious and I plan to cook it for the family at home. Mathieu made ginger floats for dessert. The rich vanilla ice cream and spicy ginger beer were a perfect combination. 

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