Friday, 25 February 2011
Toulouse ........... in the rain!
Last Sunday evening whilst slobbing in front of the fire and TV we heard a knock at the door about 8pm........very strange, as in deepest France we don't get many visitors unannounced, let alone on a Sunday evening.
I sent my husband to open the door and we were surprised by Sabrina, our au pair we had had when we lived in the UK. She has become part of the family, even if she doesn't live with us anymore but lives with her boyfriend in Tours Northern France, and she is also known now by us to act impulsively and spring surprises!
As it was half term from University she had made the 6 hour journey south with her sister to pay us a visit and stay for a few days. We were overjoyed to see her and I hurridly made up a bed for them. After a good catch up we all retired to bed at 11pm.
On Tuesday, I decided to take them out for the day, but in true Feeley style things did not go totally to plan!
Firstly, we thought it would be a good idea to take the train from Moissac, save on petrol and see what the SNCF rail network was like for us to get to Toulouse. Wrong.......not a good idea.
Issue 1: Only two trains a day to Toulouse 9am and 12 noon and two trains returning from Toulouse late in the afternoon and evening. So rather than wait an hour and a half, we decided to drive.
50 minutes later we were looking for a parking space in the centre of Toulouse. After circumnavigating the centre at least three times, driving up and down the banks of the Canal du Midi and swearing at numerous idiot drivers we finally found our space in a perfect location. We hopped out and disappeared into Flunch for a spot of lunch! My steak was consumed greedily and I was now beginning to relax and enjoy my day out.
Issue 2: Realised we had not paid for the car park and had to dash back to the car to pay before we were clamped! However, I need not have worried, in France generally you don't pay for parking over the lunch hour............this is unheard of, not paying for car parking in the UK especially at lunchtime and in the centre of a big city!
Car suitably ticketed, we wandered towards the central shopping area and Square where the Marie is located.
Issue 3 . Camer battery died typical!
The rain started lightly at first and after a short while it was throwing it down.
Issue 3: no umberellas! so darted in and out of shops to keep dry but thought as we were in Toulouse we really should go down to the river and wander along the Garonne. It was nice but we were fast beginning to look like drowned rats. Sabrina and her sister put on brave faces but after two hours we had all had enough and decided it would be much better to go shopping in an indoor mall near Blagnac airport!
Good choice..........and no issues, except not enough time shopping!