Rain and Alaskans

Our Alaskan visitors, John and Christin have arrived! We had all kinds of adventures picking them up. We rented a car from a supermarché in Decize which was a little weird. Had a little hiccup getting the car because they required “un justificatif de domicile en FRANCE récent de moins de trois mois” (proof of residence) which, of course, we did not have. They were helpful, though, and suggested a utility bill from our home in Houston which we provided (via email and the internet) which satisfied them.

JC 1
John and Christin (in a brief, non-rain, period)

We ended up with a little manual Clio (no automatics) for a day and a half for 68 Euros which seemed reasonable. We drove to Nevers several hours early to do a little shopping (we have a car!). Strange driving at 90 Km/Hr when, for the past 6 weeks, our top speed has been 8-10 km/hr.

And, just as the French train system seemed to be collapsing (the arrival and departure screen showed all the trains “en retard” by 1 – 2 hours), the train arrived with John and Christin. Drove back to Decize in the rain and prepared to leave for the Canal de Nivernais the following afternoon (Wednesday). The first two days on the Nivernais have been fun but rainy. It rained almost all day today but the day ended with some excitement as we passed through our first multi-locks (ganged locks), the last of which was a triple (three lock cavities and four sets of doors) with a 24 foot ascent.

Christin 2
Our newest helmsman

After suffering through 95 plus days on the Canal de Roanne last week the high today was  in the mid 50’s.

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