Travel Note – 11 August 2012 (Le Colombier)

I’m so behind in writing this note because we’ve been having too much fun driving up the French alps mountain ranges.

– Today started with going to a market in Annecy. I had a great time there. The bread guy said “I love you” to me.. Lol !!

Some things that they sell in the market are:

I don’t know how to cook using artichoke but they looked so fresh & big there!

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Normally I don’t really like strawberries but in France they are so sweet and have a very beautiful smell. I love them!

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Olives are not my thing (so I thought)! I tried a couple in this market, and found them so good that I can finished them off in one sitting if I don’t restrain my self from it. I can’t describe how good they are in words.

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They also sell clothes and other things at the market.

This is a head massage tool

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Some locals are buying clothes from the market. The clothes are new and still have tags in them.

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My great find in the market is these rings. They are gorgeous. Too bad I didn’t have time to take a good look so I bought two in neutral colours for me.

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– We rented a manual car from Europe car in Annecy. It is good to book ahead because we saw some people who walked in and couldn’t find what they want because it was all booked out.

Manual small car is the cheapest that we could find. The automatic car costs more than double.

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If you plan to rent a car in Europe, check a few things before you drive them:
1. Where is the petrol cap and how to open it.
2. How to use reverse gear (some cars have a different button to push or you need to lift the a ring on the gear stick).
3. Make sure you have a GPS device. We updated our Australian GPS with a European map.

We love picnics in summer. Even back home we often go for a picnic after work & weekends whenever we had lovely weather.

If you plan to go for picnics, essential things are:
1. Picnic mats. We bought roll up mats from a sport shop in Annecy for €2.90 each. They are durable, easy to pack and we have been using them for the beach as well.

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2. Fruits & cheese knives.
3. Wine bottle opener.
4. Plastic cups and paper plates.
5. Serviettes and wet tissues.
6. Heat resistant bag.

We bought most of those items at Lidl shop. We thought this shop is similar to Aldi. They didn’t carry bottle opener so we went to Carrefour market near by.

I’m surprised to see how small carrefour shops are in France in comparison to those in Jakarta or Bali.

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And.. they allow their check out girls to sit!! This was an issue in Indonesia sometime ago. The check out girls are not allowed to sit in order to increase productivity & efficiency.

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– Our first picnic of the day was for lunch near another part of the Annecy lake.

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the view from our lunch area

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our lunch

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This is the path to the lake

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The only thing lacking was the toilets! In Australia we can find toilets everywhere! Even in the bush. The Austalian government even has a website to locate the toilets.

Luckily we parked our car near the camping ground called Le Solitaire du Lac. You need to bring your own toilet paper in some toilets in France. This is not applicable in big cities.

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This is the camping ground office and their price list

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This is what it looks like. I’m tempted to
try the cabin sometime. Maybe we’ll start somewhere near home first.

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– We stopped for a swim & sun bathing at Plage du Lido near Aix-les-Bains.

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– And.. having ice creams at L’esapede au Pond de la Loi

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– Today’s highlight was driving up Col Du Grand Colombier mountain. This is one of the mountains they used for the Tour de France.

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On the way back we saw a restaurant and when we went there the lady said that they were fully booked! So if you plan to go to the Auberge du Grand Colombier restaurant, please book ahead.

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Our GPS sent us to a blocked road on the way back to Annecy so we had to turn back and follow the signs instead of the GPS.

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We came back to the hotel at around 10 pm and had dinner at a pizza restaurant called Brasserie de L’Abbaye in Annecy. The waiters are nice, they speak English and they were still open while others didn’t accept anymore patrons after 10.30 pm. The food was so-so but when you’re hungry, everything tastes good.

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