A Day on the Boat:

August 28, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

Brittany was such a fascinating place, and I must tell you about a day spent on the boat.

Once again I will just write what I wrote in my diary on July 30, 1994.

 

I slept in until 9:30...it was so cool and quiet here in Brittany...an unbelievable change from the hot bee hive that was Paris. I think about my Dad, and wonder how he felt when he was here in Brittany in June 1944 following D-Day. It would have been a terrifying place with the war going on all around him, but look at it now. You would never guess that a war had been fought here...such beautiful scenery, and peace. This is what all of those brave veterans were fighting for and what they gained through their struggle.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Following a light breakfast with Benedict and the boys, we made our way down to the beach where the little sail boat was tied up. Today we were off to the Isle de Brehat which is a couple of kilometres or so from here. The sky was clear and blue with only light winds, so a perfect day for this outing. Benedict has done this trip many times so nothing to worry about. We raised the sails and with the wind, tide and current in our favour we struck off.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


With the tide being out, the rocks were exposed and in the early morning light they had a wonderful golden glow to them. Gulls circled above us hoping that we had food to share I guess, and on the distant rocky islands were perched large numbers of gannets, and cormorants. The salty air filled my lungs and out here on the boat you had a great sense of freedom! What must it have been like for my Irish ancestors crossing the Atlantic bound for a Canada that was new and strange to them? I can't imagine.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


After sailing along the coast for an hour or more we saw Brehat and got as close to shore as we could before dropping anchor. We all boarded the dinghy and made the short paddle to shore where we met Benedict's cousin and his wife for a visit and tour of the island. After exchanging friendly greetings we started off on our walk down a narrow gravel road.

The island only has about 400 residents and there are no vehicles allowed here other than farm tractors or bicycles,” said Jean, “so it's very quiet and clean...how we like it.” As we walked past the farm houses, I could see cows and sheep grazing peacefully on the lush grass, and chickens scurrying about the barn yards. A tractor came down the lane and the driver gave us a friendly wave.
 

This place had a real magic to it...hard to describe, and I took many photos of the old stone houses, flowers, and rugged landscape. It would be a wonderful place to live, I thought to myself...such a sense of freedom and solitude in which to make art.
 

 

After a considerable walk we reached the lovely old home of Jean and his wife. We sat in the yard in the shade of a large pine tree and enjoyed cold drinks and snacks. After relaxing for a while we were given a lift by tractor back to where we had left the boat. It was time to go back to the mainland

 

The wind had dropped so we started the motor and headed off for home. It had been an amazing day site seeing by boat and on foot. Tomorrow we were going to the town of Paimpol, and more great things to see!

 

 

 

Blair T. Paul, all rights reserved
Edited and posted by: Chris MacFarlane Photography


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Welcome to my blog. 
I'll be writing on a regular basis about my experiences as a painter over the last forty years. I hope you'll share your thoughts and comments with me - it's a great way to be connected.

Blair T. Paul

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