On June 15th, Jeff & I headed to France! We got into Paris at 9:00 am on the 16th. We needed to take a train to Nantes (pronounced Not). Luckily it was part of the airport, so we didn't have to go far! This was the train station:
The reason why we got to go to France, was because one of the companies Jeff's company buys equipment from is based in Nantes, France. We were supposed to meet the salesman that Jeff works with from Sercel, and his wife, but their plane was late, so we headed on the train without them & checked into our first hotel. This was the inside:
These are the buildings outside our hotel. I love how all of the buildings are really old.
Here is our hotel:
It was the courthouse up until recently, and then renovated to become this hotel.
Since we had awhile to wait for John & Debbie to arrive, we ventured out into Nantes. This was a beautiful cathedral by our hotel.
Then we found this big square with this beautiful fountain in the middle:
Something that we learned fast in France, is that everyone pretty much makes their own hours everywhere. People are open at odd hours, and lots of people are closed on Sunday (and Monday...but we learned about that later.)
Anyway, after wandering around & not finding any stores open, we stopped in a little cafe & had our first French meal:
A sandwich & pasta carbonara. LOL! We split both & they were yummy!
We went back to the hotel and got things organized. In case you have never seen euros, here are some:
Here is our room. That picture is really freaky.....
John & Debbie finally got there & we ate a late dinner with them.
The next day, Jeff & John went to tour the Sercel plant, and Debbie & I (slept in) went out to tour some things in Nantes. Here we are getting ready to go out!
We originally started out in an industrial building, but it was closed. So we headed across the street to the chateau/castle.
Here I am playing "Lady of the Manor".
This is a well:
These are the grounds inside the castle walls:
It was the Duchy for the Duke & Duchesses of Brittany.
We tried to go inside, but it was closed also. We later learned that "France is closed on Monday". That would have been nice for the concierge to tell us, before we trekked all of the way over there....
After we left the castle, we walked around Nantes. It is a pretty small town, and you can walk over the whole town in a short amount of time. They have tone of cute shops and cafes that we stopped in. We also saw the top of this church, and decided to find it.
On the way, I saw this & thought it was funny. :0)
This is the inside of the church we found:
As we were walking back to the hotel, we saw this cathedral again:
Debbie & I headed back to the hotel & waited for the guys to get back.
When they did, we went out for drinks & dinner.
This is Jeff & I in front of the cathedral on the way to dinner:
Debbie & John:
We went to an Irish pub! I thought that was so funny that they had an Irish pub in a tiny French town.
On Tuesday, Jeff & John went golfing & Debbie & I slept in (again) and then went back to the castle to actually tour the inside.
This is Ann of Brittany. She was the duchess here, but she was also queen of France twice. She was widowed 3 times, and always returned home to her beloved Duchy.
This is a replica of what Nantes looked like hundreds of years ago:
A beautiful tapestry:
Most of the museum in the castle was about the shipping history of Nantes. This was on the front of a ship:
Ann of Brittany again:
These two statues were at the edge of where the ocean comes into the Nantes harbor:
China used in the Duchy:
How a room would have been set up:
That night we went out to a nice French restaurant.
On the way home we saw this shop making crepes. They had these all over Paris, but I hadn't seen one until then. People seemed to love these, but I wasn't that fond of them. They are like pancakes with different fillings.
This was our last night in Nantes. On Wednesday, we got back on the train to go back to Paris!