Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Journées du Patrimoine 2

Following the visit to the "Petit Bordeaux" we made our way homewards via Le Mans. Seduced by several notices beside the road as we went, we followed signs to a "friterie" (chip shop, I guess) for lunch. They led us to a lakeside shack run as a fishing operation by a couple of brits, who fed us lunch in the form of a burger that was basically an English Breakfast-in-a-bun: fried mushrooms, fried egg, bacon, tomato and onion. Oh yes, and a beef pattie. With chips, of course.

It was nice to be served vinegar with the chips; I do like my chips with salt and vinegar. There was a French chap at the next table who asked what the brown liquid in the shaker was. We explained that it was vinegar. Vinegar in France is sold unmalted, and is a clear liquid, so he didn't recognise it. He didn't believe it when we told him either, because he took the top off the dispenser and sniffed it, just to be sure.

The fishing operation comprises three lakes, stocked with carp and catfish. I was surprised by the combination since I thought that the catfish would eat the young carp. But apparently they don't eat the big ones, and for the period in the year when the carp are spawning they don't feed so you can't catch them. So people fish for the catfish at this time.

Most of the customers are British fishermen looking for a peaceful week's outing with good fish. Accommodation is in bivouacs (I called them tents but was gently and firmly corrected) and facilities there are basic but friendly, and the food is English. Sounds to me like a good option, if you're into carp fishing.

On to the Manoir de la Massonnière in the afternoon near Loué and on the way home. A much more formal French garden, with a seriously impressive vegetable area. And a frog.

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