Chambéry

This new angle of going north from Provence shows us more green , spring valleys and the snow capped Alps. One just can’t get tired of looking at these feats of nature. 


We also observe that France is very large 🙂 we are only in the southwest corner and distances are vast. What is special though , is that there is a lot of uninhabited land with pristine pastures and long stretches of forest. We end up checking just how large France is and at 644 000km2, it is the largest European Western country.


After a packed lunch made from our cheese stash from the market we arrive early afternoon, so early enough for a little explore. It is a lovely day and lots of people are enjoying the nice weather. We check into our Air B&B studio which is perfectly placed to get around on foot. Tonight we go for a traditional crepe dinner, a Creperie is just around the corner from us. What an experience, our waitress is 84 years old, tiny and bent with osteoporosis but has class and is very professional in taking our orders. Out comes the drinks waiter, her husband probably 86 or so, carrying our carafe and with  a tongue and cheek smile says” don’t get too excited, it’s only water” en Francais 🙂 They have owned this creperie for a long time and there are clearly regulars that come in as the evening progresses.

It’s time for the concert, the venue not far , but as it is a new place we ask for help from our little French GPS. She knows her way around here, but as there have been recent road changes we manage to get on the autoroute out of town by mistake, eventually we can get off and double back, but slightly flustered we miss our turn again and finally arrive at the venue with 10 min to the start of the concert. Parking is at a big premium, so we split and André goes to find a parking spot.

Luckily it is a big venue and the French leave their arrival to the last minute, so  there is a big line up to get in. Just as it’s time to be let in André surfaces ,  it seems all good except…… with the new security measures in Europe no water bottles are allowed into the venue. André bolts to hide our travel water bottle in the bushes and we are OK in the end!

We have seats high up but centre stage,  a great vantage for Veronique. André sends her a pre concert Tweet to say hello.

The concert is INCREDIBLE!! She has a voice that has the breadth of shades which allows her to imitate a vast number of artists incredibly well. We get to hear, Cher, Beyoncé, Tina Turner, Edif Piaf, Lady Gaga, Annie Lennox , Whitney Houston etc, etc all performed with amazingly sleek dance routines. Her energy and talent rocks the whole venue and a long standing ovation finishes the night. I am sure during her final bows and thank yous to the audience I hear her say ” Cher André aussi” 🙂

An early start marks  the day to visit some more in Chambéry and we see the famous La Fontaine des Eléphants.


On the way home we decide to stop for a break and hopefully some lunch in a tiny village not far from Grenoble. The nose for a good feed does not fail us, as we happen to have stopped in a place with a gorgeous chateaux now being run as a hotel restaurant.


Out on the terrace surrounded by forest we order lunch, birds chirping and a very friendly waiter, who does not turn up his nose at my French.


Everything of course sounds so much more enticing on the menu in French, but what arrives does not disappoint. André with avocado mouse cradling lightly battered prawns and me with my local Saint Martin cheese pan fried on a bed of salads, local walnuts and balsamic vinegar.


It is a total treat and very content we move on home. We divert slightly to explore a tiny steep road taking us over the foothills of the Alps and we hit some beautiful lavender fields on the way.


It has been a tiring two days but totally worth every moment of the effort. A good nights sleep will fix all 🙂

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