22 July 2018.
Greetings from under the sweltering hot sun and cornflower blue skies of Bordeaux! I am here sitting on the soft golden sands of Arcachon beach about one hour’s drive from Bordeaux, soaking up the sunshine and just simply enjoying life. We arrived here two days ago and have done so many things during that time, from visiting tourist attractions, eating delicious food and to where I am now, reclining on a beach! We flew from Dublin to Bordeaux and hired a car when we arrived. The second I got off the plane, I was hit by blistering heat. I knew it would take a while to acclimatise to it! Once we reached the hotel, I flopped down on the bed and read some pamphlets that I had found at the reception desk. They were colourful and glossy and had lists of the best beaches, the tastiest cafes, restaurants and bars and the tourist attractions worth visiting. I took out a notebook and jotted down the places that caught my eye. I knew Bordeaux was famous for its wine tasting experiences but I reckoned I was too young to try that! I compiled a list of our daily activities and the attractions we would visit. I then showed the list to my parents, and I got the stamp of approval! The first evening, we decided to check out the amenities close to our hotel. There were some charming cafes and bakeries with window shutters and hanging baskets weighed down with flowers of every variety. We also passed a couple of the restaurants recommended on the pamphlets and studied the menus mounted on the walls. One restaurant provided the more traditional French cuisine of frog’s legs and snails. I made a mental note to cross this restaurant off my list. We returned to the hotel at around nine o’ clock. When we got back to our room, I took a flying leap at my bed and landed in a heap. When I discovered we were going to France on our holidays, I invested in a French phrase book and dictionary. I flicked through the book but gave up trying to pronounce the words and phrases. I laid back and the minute I hit the pillow I fell asleep! The next morning we rose early and went to a local bakery where we bought fresh croissants. They were delicious and melted in my mouth. Our next port of call was the Cathèdrale de Saint Andrè. By the end of our tour, I had a crick in my neck from looking up at the splendid stained glass windows! We got a tasty bite to eat at a restaurant where we were spared having to talk French as the staff could speak good English. We returned to the hotel and packed our beach bags as we would be heading to the beach early the next morning (where I am now)!
À bientot! Claire