You’ll all be relieved to know my right boob did not set off the metal detector at airport security and we are now walking around the Pyrénées chasing St. James

We made it to Toulouse drama free, well, drama free except for my usual fear of flying and a new-found concern that my boob would set off security alarms.  I recently had two titanium chips implanted in my breast during a biopsy of a suspicious lump….and I’m happy to report that not only was the lump non-cancerous, but my breast made it safely through the scanner unmolested by TSA.

Thank goodness we were flying Lufthansa–though I’m not a happy flyer, I adore Lufthansa.  My favorite seats are in that tiny economy cabin up near first class.  I’m fairly certain that the view of first class is blocked off by a curtain is that the seats are all filled with bald, semi-nude German men reclining odalisque-style while eating bananas and that a mere glimpse of them might drive those of us in economy wild with desire.

After hitting the grocery store, our next stop in Toulouse was the train station where we printed out the tickets I bought in advance online.  Americans who want to shop for French rail tickets: if you’re trying to buy directly through SNCF, good luck.  SNCF’s site won’t accept most American credit cards and you’ll be pulling your hair out in frustration trying to score those sale fares before they disappear.  My advice?  Bypass SNCF and buy though Capitaine Train.  Capitaine Train has the exactly the same availability as SNCF (including the sale prices) but they won’t reject your credit card and if you have any questions you can write them and receive helpful replies in a timely fashion from an actual human being.  You’ll either receive print at home tickets or get a code to use to print out your tickets at any French train station.

We spent the day in the Pyrénées region of France at two Camino pilgrimage stops.  When I have more abundant wifi and time, I can’t wait to tell you how lovely it is.  In the meantime, enjoy the pictures.

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Airport picnic one: barley salad.

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Airport picnic two: cheese, crackers, dried mango and coffee (they give you free drinks at Munich airport–classy!)

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Sainte-Marie cathedral, Saint-Bertrand-de-Comminges, population 257.

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Basilica of Saint Just, Valcabrere.

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Just some pilgrims and some chickens….

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Just some Americains eating their nugget’s…

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The  highly questionable bedspread and pillow roll in our hotel room.

 

How we got to Toulouse: flight (with a layover in Munich) from Chicago.

Where we slept: Hôtel La Caravelle.  Price: €49 for a double.  Recommended: meh.

How we got to Saint-Bertrand-de-Comminges: train from Toulouse to Montréjeau, bus from Montréjeau to Loures-Barousse, taxi from Loures-Barousse to Saint-Bertrand-de-Comminges.

Where we slept: Hostellerie des Vallées. Price: €40 for a double.  Recommended: (doesn’t matter, since it’s the only place here you can stay.)

 

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11 comments

  1. Your vision of Lufthansa first class had me hooting with laughter…and don’t start me on SNVF. I prebooked my ticket to print out at Paris Austerlitz…the machines were down.
    Off to the ticket office, long queue, finally reached the heasd of the line and explained to the clerk showing him my e mail conformation. No, he could do nothing…gallic shrug.
    But I don’t have enough money on me to buy another ticket.
    Then ‘vous etes foutue, Madame…’ (You can guess what that means even with minimal French!)
    I was glad that i had enough French vocabulary and strong lungs as my reply brought a supervisor from his lair…who sorted it in two shakes of a lamb’s tail.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I looked ‘vous etes foutue, Madame’ up in google translate—-oh my. I can imagine if I said that at my job I’d be fired in 5 minutes.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. No chance! He has a job for life!

        Like

  2. Haha! I started off this post laughing out loud! But hey, the vision of the first class from the economy is just that of the ‘sour grapes’. I travel economy and now I can just point and laugh at the bald headed people in my mind all I want:) haha!

    Like

    1. LOL–no sour grapes here. We’re just fine in economy with our full heads of hair.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. peppergrass · · Reply

    Lovely, funny post. I would like to follow the Camino one day myself. Are you attempting the whole trail, or just happened upon a couple of the stops?

    Like

    1. Thank you peppergrass. We aren’t “real” pilgrims because we aren’t walking the whole trail. We already visited a lot of the French sites, so we hope to visit several more, including N. Spain, on this trip.

      Like

  4. Thanks for the advice about Capitaine Train.

    Like

    1. Seriously, this is great to know–thanks WOB!

      And bon chemin to you both 🙂

      Like

      1. Thanks Nathan–bon chemin to you as well!

        Like

    2. You’re welcome BuntyMcC. I hope it helps you next time you travel to France.

      Like

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