“Which one?” Mark asks accusingly as if I had cheated on him.
“Saint-Gilles. By the way, once again, France is not in the southern hemisphere. It’s fall, just like in Canada, maybe a bit warmer. So it’s not like I went swimming. I was wearing a sweater. I just… wanted to take pictures and see the ocean.”
“Humph. Looks like some people are swimming in the ocean in your pictures…”
“Yeah, well, I didn’t. Not warm enough for me.”
Still, no rain, no wind, 20°C temperature in the afternoon, it was a lovely late October day in Saint-Gilles and the perfect reward for tackling a few of my French missions successfully, including picking up my ID card and Mark’s in Angers.
It was a gamble, though, because Saint-Gilles is a terrible place to be when it rains—the beach is huge and there’s nowhere to shelter.
The town was lively with the two-week fall school break just starting, and the train from Nantes was full of parents dropping off kids at their grandparents’ for the holidays. I always wonder what happens to seaside resorts once the summer tourists are gone—it looks like Saint-Gilles doesn’t go into full low-season mode, there are enough year-round residents to keep it awake through the cold months.