I woke up around 10:30, still tired from last night. I took a shower and washed my clothes in the sink and set them out to dry. The alarm on my phone ("Party Hard" by Andrew W.K.) also woke up Luc (my host) and after some meandering about we headed to the center of town to buy some food at the Sunday market. I had big lunch with Luc, and set out running towards Mormant after one. I somehow managed to average mid six minute miles with a stomach containing: 1/4 rotisserie chicken, 1/2 baguette, a bunch of carrots and potatoes, a decent amount of chèvre (goat cheese) and several glasses of water. The run went by pretty quickly, except for the last 5k, during which I was very excited to get to the giant castle I could see on the road in front of me. After much anticipation, the castle ended up being a modern industrial plant...and I ended up being rather disappointed. When I arrived in town I bought three bottles of liquid (water, fruit juice, Orangina) and a snickers bar...and quickly made them all disappear.
I walked around Mormant for a bit, seeing what I could see, and as I stopped to sit along a sidewalk a little marching band dressed in white passed by, and I followed along to see where they were headed. I discovered a little stage, where a man was performing in some African/French free verse poetry that I couldn't understand, and had a quick nap on a bench. When I awoke people were starting to leave, so I quickly asked a woman (while there were still people to ask) if she knew where I might be able to find a computer. She said that there wasn't really anywhere in this town, but that I could probably find something in the next town over. I explained that I was travelling on foot, and after a bit more talking I ended up getting introduced to the mayoress of Mormant. She introduced me to Sylvain, who offered to let me use his computer. While checking my e-mail and writing my post for the day before I was introduced to his family and his wife Valerie invited me to stay for dinner and the night. I happened to arrive on a day when they were having a barbecue with the extended family, and spent the evening eating some awesome foot and discussing the differences between American and French culture with the kids. I joked "no, we are not generally fat and named Bob, with guns and that beer drinking hat" and in reverse none of them were named François with a black and white striped shirt, beret, neck tie and cigarette. Funny how those things go.
After dinner Valerie and the kids showed me around some nearby towns where I saw both a medieval and 17th century château. When we returned, I spent some time marvelling at the number of comments I have received in the past couple of days. I feel very fortunate to have the support of all of you, and I wish I had time to respond to all your comments. It is awesome for me to read them. Overall a great ending to my first month, and a great start to the first day of summer. Thank you all, and thanks to my Dad for all of the love and support he has given me. Happy Father's Day!
22 June 2009