Katy Kelly Paris & Beyond 2008 travel blog


View from in front of hotel

Street hotel was on

Logs used as pileons, have to be replaced every 50 years


Fort National, built in 1689 to protect from the English


My gorgeous dinner!

Paulino and me at dinner

I've been looking forward to my trip to Normandy ever since we arrived in Paris. We were scheduled to leave Friday, February 29th at 7:45am. Unfortunately I was not awoken to the sound of an alarm, but instead was awoken to the ringing of our room phone. My roommate Natalie jumped out of bed to answer it and I hear Ged (one of our AIFS advisors) through the phone saying "If you are not down here in 30 seconds the bus is leaving without you!" It was 8:00am!!! We all had massively overslept. The chaos that ensued in the next couple minutes was quite hysterical in retrospect. Clothes were flying everywhere as we dashed to get dressed and throw things in our suitcase. We all made it downstairs in a record 3 minutes (literally!) and walked on the bus...and of course were greeted with a round of joking boos from everyone. So the trip didn't start out quite as planned and each of us had forgotten something, of course (for me, it was socks...had to buy those later). We set out several hours away to the small fishing town of Saint-Malo, located on the English Channel. The entire city is encased behind walls and was settled around the 7th century. We dropped of our luggage at the hotel, which was literally right on the beach and proceeded to have a walking tour with a native of Saint-Malo, called a Malouin. As we walked down the beach we were informed that the entire road we had our hotel on was closed during the summer equinox due to ferocious waves that pound it and that the spot we were standing on was under 42 feet of water during high tide! Saint-Malo has the second most dramatic tidal changes in the world (first is in Canada). We then strolled the streets of the medieval city and were told some other interesting things about the town; one being that up until a couple hundred years ago a bell would ring at 10pm and everyone outside the city walls had 5 minutes to get inside, otherwise they released starving pitbulls who would attack and eat anyone on the street! Yikes! Saint-Malo is famous for its seafood, and I went to dinner with Stacey, Paulino, and Jack. I ordered their version of scallops and not only were they delicious but the presentation was spectacular! After our thoroughly satisfying meal we proceeded back to the hotel and went to sleep, listening to the waves outside our windows. We had another jam-packed day planned for Saturday...

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