kandi’s perspective

The Creature Comforts of Home: Eating, Sleeping and Exercise
by Kandi 

As Gord keeps you informed of our adventures and travels, I
thought I’d let you know how we are making out with the basics: eating,
sleeping and exercise. 

The first 4 or 5 nights we were on the road staying in
different places. Two of the places, fortunately, we were able to cook our own
meals. This was a treat since we had eaten several meals (breakfast, lunch and
dinner) on the road. The “supermarches” offer much of what we would find at
home and there are several little grocery stores that offer up much the same.
The patisseries and boloungeries have been a treat—offering baguettes, cheese,
and meat. We have also been to a couple of markets and bought fresh fruit and
vegetables, cheese, and yes, more baguettes. 

Restaurants have been a bit more challenging. For the most
part, we have been ordering from menus in a different language. We’ll have a
pretty good idea of what the main course is going to be “poulet” but the extras
have usually been a surprise. Pizza margarita has been a hit a couple of times.

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A staple we are all familiar with from “Earl’s”. At one restaurant, Laura
wanted pasta with an alfredo sauce. The closest item we could find was
spaghetti carbineau. It was creamy all right. Interestingly, when they served
it up, there was half an eggshell plopped in the middle of the pasta with a raw
egg in it. I suppose a delicacy. So much for my repeated warnings about eating
cookie dough because of the raw egg.

I was happy to have read before I left that bottled water
was becoming unpopular even in France. I remember when I last traveled in
Europe having to clearly state in restaurants “tap water s’il vous plait”. A
little embarrassed because I was too cheap to pay for bottled water. Now, we
are in vogue! A big jug of “tap water” is placed on the table as we sit down.
During our travels, we have been filling up our water bottles with tap water
any and everywhere along the way.

It took us about three days to get turned around with the
time change and jet lag. Sleeping is going well now with Gord and I adopting
the teenager’s hours, up late and sleeping in. The campground where we are
staying offers “cinema” night. The movie starts at 10 pm, our bedtime back
home. A big screen is erected in the main outdoor area and everyone pulls up a
lawn chair. Sort of like a drive in theatre without the cars. The choice of
movies has been good family fun: 
Hidalgo and the Horse Whisperer. We can even ask for “English
sub-titles” if we want to follow along!

Gord and I have enjoyed wonderful runs. In Zurich we scoped
out a Starbucks for the end of the run. In Caen, we ran along Canadienne
Boulevard and through Bomb Alley, and now at the campground we have a choice of
bike paths to run along, usually ending up in the “port” to pick up an English
newspaper. We have to be there early or they’ll all be sold. It costs only six to seven euros for two tabloid English papers.
Gord is in his glory for the rest of the morning! Some things never change.

Did I mention yet the campground where we are staying sells
fresh baguettes not once but twice a day? Oh yes, once in the morning for
“petit dejeuner” and again in the evening for “diner”. How do the French stay