On Sunday we headed out on another adventure. We found this adventure through the website www.vide-greniers.org. You can use this website to find a brocante, vide grenier, foire a tout, or fete. Going to a smaller town in the middle of nowhere can be hit or miss. Thankfully I have an adventurous family. There was also the promise of a castle later in the day.
On our way to the brocante we took the A13 out of Paris, and then we left the interstate. We love going across country. You see so many things that you wouldn't otherwise get to see.
We saw so many beautiful buildings. This is the marie's office in a small village, this was the most beautiful one we saw all day.
This was the view down the street from the other picture, such a quaint little place.
The architecture throughout France is always so fun. There are places that the old walls come right up to the edge of the road. The roads get smaller and smaller as you leave the cities. We ended up on several roads that were just one lane and you had to go off into the field to pass.
We made it to our destination. This town was also the home of the Wind Instrument Museum.
We spent about an hour and a half walking around this small town foire. It was awesome. We got there about 10 and most people were set up, just putting the finishing touches on their spaces. Some people had used clothes, toys, and kitchen items. There was one legitimate dealer of antiques and military items, but his prices were legitimate too. I did manage to find some treasures. The prices out in the country are so different than in Paris. For a treasure hunter like myself it was amazing. My French is good enough that I can ask a few questions, get prices and do some bartering. We were the only English speaking people that I heard, but that never slows us down much. There was a playground in the field where people were set up so Jon took the kids, did a little shopping and then played.
This was my view as I was finishing up. The church bells chimed a few times during our visit and it was so wonderful.
Here are a few of my treasures.
We left our first adventure in search of our next adventure. It meant more cross country driving, but on a day like this we couldn't have asked for a better time.
Unfortunately our second adventure of the day didn't pan out. We were hoping to visit a Fete de la Liberation, but it was not what we were expecting, I think we may have just visited at the wrong time. We did see quite a few old vehicles on the roads. We took this ride as a chance to eat the picnic lunch we brought twitch us too.
Our final stop for the day was Chateau Gaillard in Les Andelys. He found this on our last adventure to Robert le Diable's chateau. We were hoping this worked out better than that trip.
We tried heading up the path, but the stroller was not going to make it.
You can see Jon on the upper right hand side pushing the stroller up a different path, all the big kids made it up the little path.
I took over the stroller and Jon followed the kids up the hill.
And then we were in the ruins.
We were lucky that this weekend there were a group of actors and craftsmen staying at the chateau. We came in while they were eating lunch.
They had this display all set up.
There was a leather worker.
Our happy boy!
Ben is getting to be such a big boy. He was having fun playing on the well.
The view from the castle. This is the city of Les Petit Andelys. There is another part of town with a beautiful church that we would love to go back and visit.
This portion of the castle is only 3.20 for an adult and free for 10 and under. There is not a lot to do in here, but it is work walking through. They do a tour, but I am not sure if they have one in English or not. All of their signs with information about the castle were in English and French.
The signs all say no climbing, but I looked over and saw this little monkey. He is going to keep us busy.
Here are some of the characters in their costumes. The guy on the left in the black spent the afternoon sulking around the grounds with a foul look on his face. I think he likes his job. At one point I was trying to take a picture of the boys and I was trying to get them to smile. They gave me big grins all of sudden and when I looked behind me he was glaring at me. It was creepy, but it worked.
Addie was very interested in the leather working.
She found this head dress and fell in love. He didn't have any samples for sale that day, but he is on Facebook here.
Here are my boys looking at the camera.
Two more happy boys.
Addie was watching a basket weaver.
Jon got to try on a real chain mail shirt.
Jon said it felt heavy, a lot like body armor he wore in Iraq.
There was a small pack of dogs that were almost as big as horses.
Then the kids got to try on a helmet and hold a sword.
Then we headed back down the mountain.
From here we drove the hour and 15 minutes to our house. It was a full day, but it was so much fun!
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