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June 2014  -  Page 1
Back in France -
aboard the Amarok
The AMAROK sporting her freshly-painted name at a bank tie-up in the shade of the plane trees.
Nevers to Cours-les-Barres
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16 June 2014 - Back in France aboard the AMAROK.
But not without a few delays caused by not one, but
three concurrent strikes.  Baggage handlers, taxi drivers
and train conductors are all involved in some sort of
"work action" - which translates to a lack of work action
here in France. Naturally, this caused a huge back-up at
the rental car offices. Fortunately, they honored our
reservation but we ended up arriving about 4 hours later
than expected - a bit tough on our barge partners Charlie
& Marcia who were hoping to drive our car back to
Charles de Gaule Airport that same afternoon.
Despite the inconvenience, France is a beautiful country
and we're glad to be back. We have joined the AMAROK
in the town of Nevers on the banks of the Loire.  We
will start our cruise on the Canal Latéral à la Loire.
Since we had some time to spare
before meeting my daughter-in-law
and grandchildren in Decize next
week, we rented a car and drove north
along the Canal Latéral à la Loire to
check out some of the places we'll
miss as we head southeast on the boat.
AMAROK at the Port de Plaisance in Nevers - at nine o'clock in the evening!
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We drove up to Briare, the nothern
terminus of the canal and site of the
impressive
Pont Canal de Briare
which carries the canal accross the
Loire and to the junction wth the
Canal de Briare.
The Pont Canal de Briare - a masterful feat of 18-century engineering.
We also visited the beautiful
hill-top village of Sancerre.
 This
region is famous for its wines. We
bought some.  (Also had tea and
pastries at the
Café des Artes in the
central square.  Quite lovely!)
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Vineyards of Sancerre, the hill-top village of Sancerre visible in the distance.
                           
(Our Ford Fiesta rental car in the foreground.)
House with a view in Sancerre.
Wine shop window in Sancerre.
We also drove to the very pretty town of La Charité-sur-Loire.
20 June - 10:15 AM - Dep Port de Nevers
   11:15 AM - Canal Latéral à la Loire
2:00 PM - double Ecluse du Guétin
3:30 PM - Arr:
Cours-les-Barres
        Today: 12 mi  -  5 locks
View of La Charité-sur-Loire from the grounds of the old Abbey.
Monument to mariners lost in the Loire - Cosne.
Our most excellent lunch at the Auberge
de la Poule Noire
in La Charité-sur-Loire.
The Auberge de la Poule Noire in beautiful downtown La Charité-sur-Loire.
"Where the Cat Sleeps" bookstore.
I liked the name of this (and that) store.
"Everything has been said, but because
nobody listens, it must always be repeated."
Along the Embranchement de Nevers at 9:30 in the evening - on a walk from the port.
All around town in Charité-sur-Loire there were little
philosophical quotes painted on the wall.  I particularly
like this one (at left) from André Gide.
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The Start of our cruise aboard AMAROK:
AMAROK - AMAROK!
Crossing the River Allier on the impressive Pont-Canal du Guétin.
View of the Pont-Canal du Guétin from below.  Remarkable
how these 200+ year old structures have survived!
Arriving at the double lock at the end of the Pont-Canal du Guétin.
Check out the flowers at the lock-keeper's station.
Insde the deep Ecluse du Guétin.  Note the flowers on the gates!
After passing through the double locks of Guétin,
we continued 8 kilometers north to
Cours-les-Barres
where we stopped for the night.  The log continues on
June 2014 - Page 2.
.          Continue to June 2014 - Page 2
.  AMAROK on the Canal Latéral à la Loire
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