France – The pleasure of pain
Posted on May 27, 2014
We enter Strasbourg. When we reach our street I see a sign on a patisserie – Plaisir Du Pain. Well, we’ve had our struggles in France already and I was ready to interpret the sign as thrashing myself for the love of pain. But it really means Pleasure of Bread. We hope to find out soon if French bread is all it’s cracked up to be.
Meanwhile we are untangling our frazzled nerves from being hopelessly lost as soon as we entered the outskirts of Strasbourg. We were armed with the latest Google maps and turn by turn description, and highway numbers, too. But as soon as we crossed the Rhine and passed the France country sign, all highway numbers disappeared, as did street signs. In addition, the road, according to our interpretation of the written turn by turn instructions, correlated in no way with the way the roads actually went.
After half an hour attempting to find our way, and as roads got progressively narrower and we were all but in the countryside, we saw a guy walking down the middle of the little road. We stopped, got out and asked for his help. I was armed with my iPad containing detailed maps. Of course, he only spoke French but was very kindly in manner. Pretty clearly he could not read a map but began to gesticulate with his hands and arms. Then he kind of gave up and suggested he just get in the car and direct us to our abode, some miles away, not so far from his own home. He was the quintessential gentleman and directed us flawlessly, obviously knowing of every turn and every speed bump. Once we were on our street, he got out and would take nothing for his efforts, but shouldered his small knapsack and spryly went on his way.
Now we are off to a good start and ready to dig into French bread with pleasure.