|27th April 2012:
Friday, basic plans like shopping at Carrfore and going into town (Toulouse Matabiou Train Station) to see if Yvonne's Lost Property has turned up. Although not feeling well Yvonne spends the day looking at arrangements for our Italy trip from the 14th May till the 19th. Owing to the fact that we will have all our luggage (as we won't be returning to Kev's Pad before returning to OZ) we decide to base ourselves for the 5days in Rome and take day trips using the fast rail and a 3 day Eurail Italy pass to visit other cities.
No joy in locating our lost property the item appears to be still in Paris. The attendants supply me with some phone numbers for the lost property office in Paris's train station. This has take the best part of today to achieve...grrr!
Back at Kev's, Yvonne is still not feeling great and doesn't want to venture out, so I give her some peace by heading off to find the local bar. It is a traditional pub (It is Friday after all) similar to back home with drinking at the bar, paying as you go, a sports section in the back etc. The bartender / publican seems amused at my accent. No one at the bar speaks English but the beer is cold and good.
On the way back to base (Kev's pad), I stop off and order a pizza at the local pizza place for dinner. No one speaks any English so ordering a pizza is very amusing yet again (somewhat like charades). Away from the traditional tourists spots it seems that French is the only language. All goes well and on my return at 8pm my pizza is ready and an enjoyable meal for Yvonne and myself. Kev has gone out to his usual Friday get-together with his French Friends and returns home at the unruly time of 11pm after leaving to meet up with Alexandera at 4pm (Wayne asked for his written excuse...of course,Ha!). We are quite at home here in Toulouse now (this is our 3rd stay) thanks to Kev's hospitality. He is happy to go off and do his own thing and leave us to do ours.
28th April 2012:
Saturday. Spent this morning Skyping with Kerryn & Michelle between 9am to 10am (we all attempted to do a group link-up without any great success). Eventually Kerryn said she would contact us again tomorrow (as she was going to the Officers Mess Dinning in Night) and Wayne and I spent time with Michelle who wished YvonneHappy Mothers Day in advance. Yvonne spent this morning down loading photos and emptying the memory sticks ready for our next trip. This takes an hour or two. Nardin drops in for a French long lunch with Kevin preparing (starters: pate on French stick,olives &green salad followed up with goats cheese wrapped in bacon heated and eaten along with the salad (which Wayne made. Yvonne is banned from the kitchen-food preparation until she is over her cold) and finally a macaroni cheese with chicken & sea salt added. To drink we opened the bottle of Rose called 'Seduction'. Wayne is torn as it appears to be a waste owing to the fact that Yvonne is sick & Nadine has a sore back.......After lunch We spent the rest of the day pricing Hotels for our next adventure, setting out time line etc to send off to Roz & Lester for feedback.
29 th April 2012
Sunday a sleep in and a slow start to the day.
Ya nick (Alexandera's partner) comes over and fixes our ipad problem of being unable to connect to Kev's wifi. Yeh! finally we are able to use our i-pad at Kev's place.
We are off to the Toulouse Matabiau to book our 2 remaining EURail train trips and also our Paris trip to get our connecting flight to Rome on the 14 th May. That done, we head home to complete our tour plans.
In the afternoon we are invited to Alexandra and Yannick's place for afternoon tea. We gratefully accept and have a wonderful afternoon chatting about various topics including travelling to Venice (Alexandra and Yannick had been earlier in the month). Alexandra has cooked a far (a Brittany dish similar to a custard tart with prunes) for afternoon tea. Yannick had been out photographing various landscapes and arrived home a little while after we arrived.
Yannick is a keen photographer and even sells some of his mounted landscape photos at the various markets around the city. He was generous enough to show us various photos that he had taken and was very proud of. He was even more generous when he gave Yvonne and I a mounted photo each. The photos are scenes of Toulouse and boats on the Canal du Midi. This was a wonderful gesture on Yannick's part that will be hard to repay.
Later, as storm clouds rolled in, we bid them farewell and headed back to Kev's for dinner and a nice drink.
30th April 2012:
Monday. Kev feels adventurous and decides on cooking a pork roast meal for dinner, so the preparations being early. First the stove has to be fixed so it will cook ie the digital timer has to be reset. That done, the boys go shopping while Yvonne continues booking hotels for our next trip. Carrfour is unusually filled with people for a Monday, but as Kev has said, the French love their shopping and many people will have taken a 4day week-end. Yvonne and I have been paying for all the groceries and drinks etc that get consumed while we are in Toulouse. It is the least we can do to repay the generosity of our free accommodation.
With the shopping done and the bookings complete we are able to sit back and enjoy a relaxed afternoon in the spring sunshine. Yvonne decided to update the trip journal website with details from our Czech Republic excursion.
The dinner meal is cooked to a treat and Wayne and Kev are pleased with themselves and celebrate by deciding to have another bottle of wine.