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Bastille Day in France

We came back from Paris before Bastille Day and decided to spent it on the Atlantic coast, in the family house. This is where I spent most of my summers as a kid and a teen and I hadn’t been back there since 2002. At the time, I was coming back from Australia and New Zealand and I had spent the entire summer almost locked in a room trying to study for my university exams the following September.

This is a sleepy village 45 minutes from Nantes. Its claim to fame is the cookie factory. Other than that, there isn’t much: a roundabout (French love roundabouts and even the smallest village has one), a church, a bar-tabac (a small corner store) and a news agent. I both loved and hated the place as a teen. The beach is only a few minutes’ walk from the house and going there is fun, yet it gets very lonely after a while. Summer seemed to stretch forever: between going to the market and biking to the news agent to buy a magazine once in a while, there wasn’t much to do. I’m the oldest kid in the family and my sister, the second oldest, is 6 years younger than me. I spent entire evenings shouting at a bunch of kids (brother, sister, cousins…) who kept on sneaking into my room and yet I was bored at the grownups table at dinner time.

This was like a blast from the past for me. Feng and I didn’t have a car so we had to walk everywhere, like when I was a teen. Because nobody lives in the house full-time, there is no T.V and no Internet connection. I found most of the magazines I had left the last time I was there, eight years ago. I found my old swimsuit and my old posters. I found peace and quiet.

The coast had been badly damaged by TotalFina’s Erica oil spill in 1999 but little remains of the disaster today. I remember, at the time, there were pools of oils washed upon the shore and it looked like it would never be clean again. I guess ten years have passed…

You can follow our French trip here on Flickr: France (2010).

Local Cookies
Ne Pas Stationner
St Michel Beach
Bastille day Fireworks on the Beach
Bastille day Fireworks on the Beach
Streets in Pornic
Tall Trees
Boats at Low Tide
Naming Boats
Trees at Sunset
Castle in Pornic
Famous Ice Cream Shop

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