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Amsterdam & Belgium - Part 13 - Teresa's birthday in France

Posted by Rich Link on 12/03/2003 08:16:01 PM

May 28 – Teresa’s Birthday in France

After another great breakfast, we got an early start as we headed into France for a trip along the sea. However, we made a quick stop at the Brasserie Thiriez in Esquelbecq, not far across the border. The small brewpub makes very nice beers, and sells them in corked bottles. We tried La Blonde, a 6.5% ale with spicy hop aromas and nice bittering to balance a nice malty body. La Rouge Flamande, at 5.8%, had a malty-sweet aroma to go with crystal-caramel flavors. Bought a bottle for Bernadette.

Back on the road, after a bit of traffic getting into Calais, the drive along the coast was spectacular. The sky was clear, with a little haze. It was warm and beautiful. We pulled off at a couple of cliffs to look out across the sea to Dover. We’re told you can see Dover on a very clear day, but it wasn’t that clear I guess.

Bernadette had suggested that we stop at Chez Mimi, a small restaurant that specializes in seafood. Again, a language barrier. When I asked for a menu in English, the lady at the next table started to giggle. I wanted to kill her.

The meal was a full-scale flail. I ordered a huge plate that included crab, shrimp, mussels, oysters and other things that I did not recognize. Teresa is allergic to shellfish, so she ordered the sole. Well, I got my plate, and waited about 10 minutes before starting in, hoping Teresa’s plate would come soon. At her urging, I dug in. The waiter and the owner both came by and looked confused as to why Teresa wasn’t eating. I also gave them looks to suggest that her fish should be served immediately. A few more minutes passed, and I tried to communicate that we needed Teresa’s fish. They seemed to understand, but still no fish.

I eventually finished the crustacean plate, and Teresa’s dish did not arrive. Then, finally her dish came, and a plate of fish for me too, which I did not order. It was all good, and I was glad to have the fish since the shellfish didn’t do much to fill me. But, it was very frustrating to spend half the meal wondering where the birthday girl’s meal was. I must learn to speak French.

Back on the road, we hit a major traffic jam southwest of Watou. We found a grocery store and bought some Champagne and snacks, then went back to the Inn for some fun and games. I was shocked that the price of Champ[agne in France was more than it is in California.

Tomorrow - Driving to Brussels

Amsterdam & Belgium - Part 13 - Teresa's birthday in France - Rich Link, 12/03/03 08:16:01 PM

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