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A Few Weeks in France

Well, as Paul predicted, it’s been awhile since our last post. Trust me though, we really do have a sweet excuse. We’ve been out of the country for the last couple of weeks, bouldering in Fontainebleau, France. Sorry for no live updates straight from the cozy, hip, European internet cafes. We didn’t really spend much time in them this trip. In fact, we didn’t really spend much time doing any sort of non-climbing hanging-out-type activities. Why? Cause we were too busy out there in the forest squeezin’ *juice* out of the boulders baby! That’s why!!! Fontainebleau was sunny from the day we stepped off the plane until the day we went home (very rare in rainy springtime France). And wow did we take full advantage of every last sun-filled drop – bouldering 10 out of 13 days.

Our bouldering buds on this trip included Courtney (came along with us from the States), Grit and Manu (our dear friends from Germany), Lutz, Chris, Gerald and ‘lil 5 year old Fritz (friends of Grit and Manu – also Germans), and Alex and Lisa (more Germans!). All that time commuting in my car listening to ‘Drive Time French’ prior to this trip….sheesh! I should have been learning to speak German!

So I was debating on whether or not to give a long day-by-day, blow-by-blow rundown for this trip report. And I decided not. Reason being, because every single day of our trip pretty much went kinda sorta like this:

Wake up late morning, 9 or 10am, in our comfy cozy gite. Nominate someone for bakery duty. Said nominee jumps into cutesy little euro roller-skate car and heads down to the bakery in the nearby village, practicing his/her “bakery French” along the way. Baguette, croissants, pastries, cheese, jams, yogurt, fruit, coffee and tea for breakfast. Or seeing as it’s nearing 11am, shall we call this “brunch”? Who cares – Mmmm.

Hit the boulders around noon. Climb, climb, and climb some more. Watch old French men cruise your projects with ease, cheesegrate down the slabs and vote on who has the most banged-up knees for the day, eat baguette like it’s the next generation power-bar, and blurt out Alle! Alle! during every sketchy sloper no-holds topout you see. Continue this ‘till about 7 or 8pm, when the baguette supply runs low.

Back at the gite, it’s now time to bust into some bottles of wine. Someone has volunteered to be chef for the evening and is cooking up his/her special dish for the full house. In traditional French style, dinner lasts around 2-3 hours. More wine, a few bars of chocolate for dessert, stories (both in German and in English), laughs (at the Americans trying to speak German and the Germans trying to speak English), more wine, more stories, a few more laughs to work off the last full chocolate bar each of us just chowed down, one last sip of wine to polish off the bottle, and finally the tired climbers hit the hay around midnight or so.

Sleep like a baby.

Wake up the following morning. Same time. Same blissfull place.

Repeat, repeat, repeat.

Grit slappin’ #10 Blanc at Franchard Isatis, 6c

Dinner time in our gite

Little Fritz. So psyched to climb he’s climbing out the window!

Paul attempting el Poussif at Franchard Isatis, 7a+

Mmmmm. Breakfast.

The Bottle Game on a rest day

April sending the tedious Marie Rose at Bas Cuvier, 6a

Breakfast at the Chateau de Fontainebleau

Fritz squeezin’ the juice

The crew

(more pics on the way)

posted by arr

This entry (Permalink) was posted on Tuesday, April 24th, 2007 at 8:35 pm and is filed under Bouldering, Fontainebleau-France. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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