Beaumont, Jersey (La Ruelle es Ruaux)
Today I was up early so Jeremy could take me to the harbor to catch the ferry to Guernsey. We left a little after 8:00, and because of traffic, we didn’t arrive at the harbor until 8:30. My ferry was scheduled to leave at 9:10.
I needed to get a ticket from the counter when I arrived and showed the clerk my on-line purchase. He then gave me the unfortunate news. My tickets were for October 23rd. Somehow I had managed to put in the wrong date when I ordered on-line. Now what? He then suggested I spend the day in St Malo, France. He could convert my ticket into tickets that would get me over to St. Malo and back again later in the afternoon. I asked him to make the changes. Sometimes you have to be flexible.
I was the last person on the ferry and we were soon underway. I had no time to do any research on this town beforehand so I tried to find out as much as I could once I got seated. I found out that it is a port city in Brittany, there is an old town that is surrounded by tall granite walls. It was home once to privateers (pirates approved by the king). The principle building is the Saint-Malo Cathedral.
Once we landed I walked over to the nearby old town. This part of the city looks like it is fairly intact. The buildings look to be mostly from the 1700’s and there are many shops along two of the main streets that run through the town. Also many restaurants that serve crepes.
I took my time, since I had between 4 – 5 hours to explore today, walking through the streets. Beyond the shops, walking towards the channel waters, was the city wall. From there you could see two forts out in the water. One was Fort National and the other, Grand Bé. The clouds from this morning were burning off and enjoyed my time looking out from the old town walls and smelling the fresh marine air.
I was thinking that I should find a restroom and also an ATM to get some Euros. Neither were in abundance, but it gave me time to walk around some more. I visited the town’s large cathedral before continuing my walk. I finally found a restroom but it didn’t open until 1:30. I decided to have something to eat in the meantime.
I found a restaurant that was off the main street and where I could sit and people watch. Of course the menu was completely in French so I had to translate most of it using my phone. I eventually decided to order Croque Monsieur, or the French version of a grilled ham and cheese sandwich, and a salad. They also served fortified cider, which came with the meal.
I was full once I finished lunch but sat there and enjoyed my view of this part of the town until I felt it was time to move on. I had time to look around for another hour before I thought I should walk back to the port to catch the ferry.
At around 3:30 I walked to the port, got my ticket and waited to board the ferry back to Jersey. I didn’t want to miss the ferry, otherwise I would need to spend the night in St. Malo. After awhile we got underway and I was on my way back to Jersey. The captain announced we should have a smooth trip back to Jersey, but it got a bit rough as we got near to Jersey because a storm was passing through. The boat really rocked. I went to the men’s room and I guess one of the passengers was getting a bit sea sick. Glad I don’t have that problem.
When we got off the ship we needed to go through Passport Control. I was a little concerned because there wasn’t much space for the more stamps in my passport. The agent asked me a number of questions about the length of my stay in the U.K. but it seemed to satisfy him to see the spreadsheet that I maintain where I keep try of my stays. He had never seen a spreadsheet like mine before. Though most people that he sees are holiday travelers, not full time travelers. In the end he was satisfied and I was on my way to find a taxi.
The taxi driver was very talkative and just when I was getting out of the taxi he starts talking about Trump. I managed to get away before the conversation got too deep.
Again I was very tired from my travels today and took a nap before making dinner. I didn’t feel like writing my travel blog and went to bed early. I’ll write my travel blog tomorrow before leaving for the airport. My plane doesn’t take off until early afternoon.