Sun, 24 Jun 2001
La Rochelle // at 23:59
Trip total: 1455.0km
It was nice to wake up and not have to pack up and move. Michael and I walked around for an essential visit to the laundromat, then spent the morning sitting on the beach watching the girls go by.
The beach and the bay looked fantastic, but as the tide went out we saw that the sand ended at the waters edge, and it was all mud and rocks from there out! Probably explained why so many people were sitting on the beach, and so few were in the water.
In the afternoon I managed to chase up an internet connection and check my email, 690 messages to sort through, and only two that I was interested in, the two from Jo. The French keyboard isn't a QWERTY layout, and that really slowed me down. The whole “internet booth” was an Apple iMac in a fancy cabinet, and it crashed as soon as I tried to access St George's electronic banking applet. Not a satisfactory experience!
In the evening we walked around the harbour again and drooled over the Round-the-world yachts that had tied up as part of the BT Global Challenge event. Fleetingly joked about trying to crash the welcome ceremony and help ourselves to the seafood buffet and champagne that we could see, but settled for going to dinner and a few beers in a nearby café.
39FF for a pint of Guiness came as an unpleasant surprise, although the beer and the bar and the company were good. Later we explored a few more side streets as things got a little quieter with the end of the weekend, and found a statue of a horse that someone had put a beer bottle in its mouth. I tried to take a picture, but had trouble zooming in on something that far away. Again, it cooled down rapidly once the sun went away, and we had a fairly early night.