On The Road To Mont ST-Michel

After Thursday’s fifteen plus hours train, ferry, taxi ride from Copenhagen to Paris I needed a day to catch my breath before leaving Paris this morning for a day and two nights in Mont St-Michel and a day and two nights at the channel island of Jersey before returning to Paris on Wednesday.

I slept in till 8:00 AM, had breakfast and then finished and published my blog that I started on Thursday.  I then realized that it was Independence Day back in the US.  I thought well I’m missing the fireworks in Philadelphia and I won’t be in Paris for Bastille Day.  Oh well.  Anyway Happy Birthday United States.  It was raining in the morning but by early afternoon the sun came out so I took the Metro to Gare de l’Est to purchase my railway tickets for the next week’s travels.  Of course railway stations all across Europe are always crowded so I plan on at least a couple of hours of waiting in line.  Yesterday was no exception as far as the crowds went however, there were many agents so the line move pretty fast.  I think I was there less than an hour and had my reservations.  However, the resulting reservations made me $149.00 poorer.  I’m not so sure the Eurail pass is the bargain it used to be since there is a hefty supplemental surcharge on any train that crosses a border.  So future travelers if you are thinking of traveling by rail across borders in Europe you might want to do some analysis and compare the supplements vs. the actual cost of the ticket without a Eurail Pass.  Add those supplements to the cost of the Eurail Pass and it just may be less expensive in totally to pay full fare or it may be a wash or the Eurail Pass may still be a bargain.  I must admit that I did not read the fine print thinking nothing has changed in eight years.  Lesson learned.

After getting all of my reservations made I came back to Bastille and had lunch and then decided to take a leisurely walk around Paris without a map and without my camera but I did carry my iPhone.  The walk was nice and I did not get lost.  I love Paris any time of year.

When I returned to my hotel, Bastille was buzzing with activity because France was about to play Germany in World Cup competition.  So I decided to find myself a cafe or bar and route for France along with everyone else.  Much like my being in Berlin during the 2006 World Cup the scene in Bastille as well as all across Paris was electric.  There would be city wide cheering when there was a chance that France would score a goal.  Alas it was not to be.  Germany went on to defeat France 1-0.

After the game I decided to get something to eat then returned to my room to get ready for this mornings trip.  Once packed and after hand washing my underwear and socks I turned on the television in my air conditioned room and watched the first 55 minutes of Columbia trying to defeat Brazil.  I routed for Columbia but once again Columbia lost 2-1 in what I thought was the most physical game of football I’d ever seen.

Today I awoke at 6:00 AM after a restless night because the street my hotel is on is a hotbed of activity and on a Friday night the noise of folks shouting to each other lasted till almost 5:00 AM.  Believe me it would have been worse if I wasn’t able to keep the windows closed.

At around 8:30 I checked out of my hotel and headed to Paris Montparnasse via Metro Line 1 to Chaelet and then transfer to Line 4 to Gare Montparnasse.  I don’t know If I’ve ever discussed this but the Paris Metro is a wonder.  It really works well except for one thing.  When you begin at a station that has more than one line at the stop you will do a lot of walking underground and that long walk will take you repeatedly up stairs and down stairs which I have not been able to figure out why.  All I know is that there is a lot of up and down in those Metro stations.  It took about an hour with all the walking and changing trains to get to Paris Montparnasse and when I got off the Metro there was a long walk underground before getting to the station itself.  I was drenched in sweat by the time I reached Montparnasse.  When I came into the main station it was a mass of humanity.  I could barely move.  In fact it took almost 10 minutes to get to the track where my TGV train was waiting to take me to Rennes which was only five tracks away.  This was a very long train and it appeared to be full.  However, I found my seat, the train left on time and we arrive in Rennes on time.  From Rennes station I walked across the way to the bus station for the one hour bus ride to Mont St-Michel.  By the time the bus arrived here it was raining pretty hard and has continued to rain.  The weather for tomorrow is for sunny and fair.

The internet connection here at my hotel is poor at best so I’m not sure when this will get published but I though I would write and post pictures and publish all of it when i have a better internet connection.  

1.Louis.skypala@verizon.net © Louis M. Skypala 2014