Tuesday, September 3, 2013

CAMPING IN FRANCE

photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com

Day 49, Camp Nowhere (minus Christopher Lloyd, other kids, hjinks, and early nineties wackiness, but other than that it was exactly the same) - 8/26
by Jerrad

Morning creeped through the windows of the flat. Instead of the re-animated death groan and unwelcoming dagger stare we usually give the morning we welcomed her with opened arms. The reason for the warm welcome to our arch nemesis was that we had planned to go CAMPING!!!! Nadia's friend, Etienne, was going to lend us his car so we could go camping in the Perigord region of France. We grabbed our things and set off to get the car. 
We had learned that the camping site was about three hours away and we were going to tour france a little bit. I know Lance got a way better tour by juicing so I did what any american would do and juiced as well. I WAS PUMPED and ready to rip a phone book in half and/or cry. I also noticed a small stain on my shirt so I ripped it off and set it on fire after shattering a store front window for having clean shirts on display. We then lugged our gear through the not so mean streets of Bordeaux to pick up the car. 
We crammed all of our stuff into the our new whip and headed off to Nadia's parents to pick up the actual camping gear (tents, sleeping bags, fire source, etc). Now that we actually had camping gear we were off to the town of Vezac where our camping outpost would be. 
We made a pit stop for petrol (gas). We pulled up and we got out of the car and realized we had no idea what kind of gas went into the vehicle. The choices were: gazole, sans plomb 95, and sans plomb 98. I knew sans means "without" and plomb probably wasn't a term for a fruit grenade and guessed it meant lead. Sans Plomb = without lead. This meant gazole had to be diesel by default and not the jerk that works at the front of the station. Killer. Now alI we had to do was figure out if the rig we were driving ate gazole's or fruit grenades. After checking the manual it was determined that this car ate fruit grenades (sans plomb) and we were off again.
We decided to take the scenic route to our camping grounds. Our first stop was Sainte-Foy-la-Grande. We were extra excited about this stop because we hadn't eaten in a while (we missed second breakfast AND eleven-zees) and there was food here. Most of the town was closed, but we found a cheap place to eat. We walked in and the man behind the counter was nice... in a sarcastic, want to slap him, shut up and just give me some food kind of way. Lunch was giant gorgonzola penne pasta bowls for 5 euros each. Not bad. Refueled and ready to go we hit the road once again.
Stop number two was Belvès. We walked around this quaint little town and took some romantic pictures under their giant pom-pom poof lantern (see photo green bee) and then we were off.
We arrived to the town of Vezac and found our campsite, La Cabane. It was just like any other campsite I've ever been too. There was a yield to airplanes sign, a small stand to buy fries and pizza, a pool, and a giraffe bouncy castle. We staked out our land, unloaded our gear and went to the store for essentials (aka dinner and beer). The trip was quick and we hurried back to set up shop. Shana had never set up a tent and she did a fine job managing the tent all by her self. My baby girl is growing up so fast. Homes were built and we threw our swimsuits on to play in the river.
The water was amazing. We brought our warm tall cans with us and made a camouflage rock chilling fortress to cool them dudes off (see treasure map marked bottom secret). As we were taking photos there were hot air balloons taking off roughly fifty meters behind us. It was quite a sight to see. They were so close to the water and trees. Shana managed to grab one (See photo head pinch squish). Daylight was slowly fading and we had yet to make dinner. After stacking rocks high enough to find our aluminum friends for later we dried off and changed for supper.
Supper was surprisingly filling. Small raviolis, bread, and cheese.  We cleaned up our supper mess and decided we needed to burn off some of the energy we had ingested during the day so we made our way to Beynac Castle. The sun was real close to setting and the castle was virtually empty. The lighting couldn't have been better. We journeyed all around and snapped about three hundred thousand photos. The darkness had set in and we were getting sleepy. We headed back to our tents and called it a night.

Day 50, Dommed for Happiness - 8/27
by Shana

You know Jerrad and I must really enjoy camping because we successfully woke up early for our second day in a row. We awoke to Nadia making coffee and sneaking into our tent to take photos of us scraping the crusties out of our eyes (see photo: pitching a tent). We got out of our tent, grabbed our cups of coffee and walked a few feet to the river. Everything was extra foggy and beautiful. The light was just starting to shine through the fog and it was an amazing view to wake up to. I think I'll try this camping thing some more.
We finished taking some foggy photos and headed to Beynac Castle yet again to view it in the daylight. Luckily it was still early enough that the other tourists had not ventured outside yet, so we were basically the only ones there. We walked up steep and narrow streets taking photos along the way of beautiful, old-as-crap homes.
When we were through with Beynac we picked up some pastries (and by "some pastries" I mean enough pastries to feed a family of 5 for a week). Nadia picked out various walnut cakes, muffins, candies and even some homemade Nutella spread. We resisted our urge to inhale all of them at once and saved them for our next destination; the gardens of Château de Marqueyssac (google that shit).
I was expecting a small garden where we would sit, view some flowers and snack on pastries so I was obviously surprised when we walked into the 50 acre garden. The garden consists of about 150,000 boxwood trees carved into lovely shapes, magical views of the surrounding area, playgrounds, century old taxidermy diaramas, 5 peacocks, a children's labyrinth (which should just be a called "a labyrinth for anyone 5'4" and under"... see photo: "where's shana? here I am!") and a lot more. We easily spent 4 hours there wandering around. One of my favorite places in the garden was a little room full of old taxidermy animals. The animals were set up in violent scenarious where they were mauling and eating each other. The best part about the display were the speakers in the room, which played noises of live animals chirping and making other cute noises. It was the best/creepiest thing I've seen in a while. Our last stop in the garden was to get some official honeymoon food. We shared flavors like strawberry, daffodil and poppy.
We went back to the campground to pack up our tents and continue our adventure. We ended up in Domme, a medieval town. We parked and walked towards the town where we were surprised to find a buttload of tourists shopping for handmade soaps, ugly pottery and waiting in long lines for food. We wanted to check out more of Domme, so we walked about one street over where there were virtually no other tourists. Rather than shopping for mass produced "handmade" wine openers, we got to enjoy an awesome view (see photo "god domme it") and stroll through streets by ourselves*. After exploring Domme for a while we hopped in the car and drove back to Bordeaux.
We dropped the car off and realized we were starving. Nadia had mentioned Fufu Japanese Noodle Bar and Jerrad is in love with all things noodle, so we happily grabbed some seats at the bar. Jerrad and Nadia got meaty ramen soup (they said it was yummy) and I got vegetable yakisoba noodles, which were so delicious that I became an expert chopstick user and cleaned by bowl using only chopsticks. After dinner we headed back to the flat for showers and comfy-bed sleeping.

*If you're not into crowds and want to explore places without using a tour guide, sometimes all you need to do is walk one street over. Don't get me wrong, I thoroughly enjoy souveniers and the convenience of having an H&M around the corner, but it's nice to know how easy it can be to go off the beaten path. 

driving grandpa Jerrad - photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/

photo "green bee" - photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/

I like how I look 5'5" here - photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/

photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/










"head pinch squish" photo by Nadia, muffin-top-crop by me - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/

photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/




camouflage beer cooling technique


underwater go-pro fun





classy dessert

bunday monday.
MAXIMATOR beer.

where's Nadia?

no editing.


photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/

photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/

photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/


DAY TWO PHOTOS:

photo "pitching a tent" - photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/

photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/



foggy morning



Beynac castle


castle spikes

foggy graveyard


pastry stopover

Marqueyssac gardens:

Jerrad loved pigeons so he was excited about the cage of rare ones

view of Catelnaud from the gardens. CASTLES EVERYWHERE. photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/

the only taxidermy that wasn't bloody

oh hey a cute owl... EATING A MOUSE

just some ferrets eating a bird

yep.

goodbye cute little ducky



photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/

photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/



photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/

photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/

the Nadia Bush. Origin: France

the view

photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/

photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/

photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/

where's shana? here I am!  - photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/

photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/

goodbye campground

Domme - photo by Nadia - http://wvlam.tumblr.com/

view from Domme

carwash before dropping of the car off

dinner

4 comments:

  1. Can I just say "You kids rock". Loving this blog (and living vicariously) while laughing so hard I'm peeing my pants. :-) xoxo Cherie-baby

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  2. Shana and Jerrad, I feel as though I've been to all the places you guys went to. Spectacular photos Nadia! You are a one of a kind human being. If you are ever in USA come to visit in Arizona and get a tan. France is such a beautiful country. I had no idea. What a fun camping trip! So many things jammed into it. So unique, too. Love the castles,too. A great blog. Thanks for sharing.

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    Replies
    1. Nadia said "so your mom thinks I'm too pale?"... NICE GOING MOM. Just kidding. I'll try to convince her to come to AZ. <3 <3

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