Our ups & downs on Ile de Re
Trip Start Feb 28, 2010
123Trip End Aug 28, 2010
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Where I stayed
1A Lucien Faureau, Sainte Marie de Re
* Shopping in our local village, Saint Marie de Re just 200 metres down the road. A market every day with fresh fruit & veges, cheeses and seafood. A fantastic boulangerie and boucherie. Everything we need
* Strolling through the streets admiring the hollyhocks. Red, pale yellow, whie and every shade of pink, they grow everywhere along the white walls. Every so often you get a splurge of orange with the sariteas.
* Popping into the brocantes(antique shops) & art galleries hunting for a bargain. We did find some fabulous leather chairs however getting them home for a reasonable price is proving to be tricky. I also had a relaxing morning sneaking off with Mary and Bryan exploring the villages.
* Splashing around on Le Bois Plage en Re, the main sandy ocean beach on the island. We took Genevieve's wheelchair down over the sand dunes onto the beach and she was grinning from ear to ear when she touched the Atlantic ocean.
* Special family time with Mary and Bryan
* Visiting the lighthouse of Les Baleines, one of the highest and most powerful in France.
* Watching the kite surfers and sailing boats on the water.
* The interesting bell towers and church spires on the landscape
* Driving through the salt marshlands, market gardens and numerous vineyards.
* Visiting Saint Martin de Re, an ancient citadel with its star shaped ramparts built by Vauban. Fishing boats and luxurious yachts float side by side in the harbour.
* Watching the tractors on the beach harvesting the oysters. Exploring the fish locks at low tide which the fishermen used to trap fish.
* The Poitou donkey called le Baudet du Poitou. Distinctive with its long, curly coat, big head and long ears.
* The weather. Over 30 degrees and blue skies most days.
* Genevieve is improving day by day which is great for her and easier for us. At least half the time here she has slept right through the night. She is loving painting the hollyhocks.
* Watching Wimbelon and the World Cup soccer
* Farewell drinks on the promenade at La Flotte watching the boats come in
* Pushing Genevieve's wheelchair on the cobblestone streets
* Genevieve not being able to swim at the beach on the most glorious, scorching days with the water glistening.
* Simon and I in foul moods as we work through Genevieve's complicated insurance claim(speaking French), organised a roof rack, recharghed Simon's mobile which had randomly moved onto another very expensive plan and was churning up euros by the minute, exploring options to get furniture and gear sea freighted back to NZ and so the list goes on. Thank you Mary and Bryan for calming us down and helping out with the girls.
* Simon has counted that he will need to lift Genevieve 210 times to the bathroom over the next 6 weeks, at least. The house we are staying at is three stories so is not wheelchair friendly. It is proving difficult lifting Genevieve everywhere so we are exploring accommodation options with the insurance company at the moment.
* The island is a cycling mecca and Genevieve can't cycle with two broken ankles.
* We went to a local restaurant for dinner wanting traditional French cuisine for Mary and Bryan's last French dinner out and ended up with crepes.
As we reflect back on the week, Ile de Re has been a great place for us all to relax as we start to move forward again after Genevieve's accident. Mary and Bryan headed off this morning to Paris and fly out to NZ tomorrow. We drive to Paris as well tomorrow, with the wheel chair tied on the roof for 2 weeks of crazy city life in the heat of summer. Quietly wondering how we will all cope!