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Valar Qringaomis

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Wednesday, February 12, 2014

France 2012 - Day 12 - Carcassonne - Canal du Midi (Part 3)

France 2012
Day 12 - 24th October - Carcassonne - Canal du Midi
(Part 3)

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"Toco, Rompo, Pago!"
This is Spanish for "Touch it, break it, play with it!". Maybe there's something wrong with Spanish people.

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The English doesn't say why they don't reserve stuff for you for later collection anymore

When I returned to the hostel to take my camera battery I was informed I had to change my room as they had given me a girls' room. Hurr, HI prudery. I went up and noticed frilly purple underwear on a bed I didn't think was there before.

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"Mixité" is one of their values despite gender segregation. I should've lectured them on "separate but not equal"

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Grow your own grapes
These are for eating, not wine. Only the Merlot can be used for wine. Wine grapes are too acidic and have too much tannin

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Place with lots of awards. Including from the "Universal Cassoulet Academy".

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Basilica of St. Nazaire and St. Celse

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Nave

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"The Church is at the centre of your lives. Help it to live"
Making the church relevant

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Stained Glass

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Rose Windows

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Altar

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Pillars

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Organ

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Pulpit

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Pieta

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Trinity

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On the Stained Glass

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I didn't understand the sheaves of wheat

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Portal

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Capital

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Grotesques

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Joan of Arc (I think)

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"The Basilique St NAZAIRE is a church always assigned to the Roman Catholic Cult"
Apparently you should use trumpets

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St Dominic preached for Lent in this church in 1213

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Tower

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Gargoyles

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Exterior

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From bottom

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Carcassonne from further away

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Classic river view with old bridge

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"Restaurant Le Viêt-Nam"

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Portal

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Tiny door to a historic place: Prosper Montagné, Grand Master of French Cooking, was born here in 1865

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Place Carnot

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Fountain

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"Ti' gouté" (small taste)
aka Kids' Set
I passed on the toy (the surprise) and the chupa chups and got €0,20 discount

I decided to walk a stretch of the Canal du Midi.

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Canalside beside SNCF station

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PDA area

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Ducks

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Jogger under bridge

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It was a 35 minute walk either way. I don't know why I was expecting more.
At the hostel they said it took an hour to walk to and fro and see 3 locks - though I walked quite fast I only saw 1.

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House across Canal

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Graffiti

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Ugly lock. I decided not to see the other 2, not least since it was getting late.

On my way to the lock I'd come across 2 ladies who said it was 10 minutes away. It was actually 15. I was resting near the lock and they returned. I pointed out the time estimate had been wrong and they apologised. I asked if they'd driven and they said they had. I was hoping they'd feel guilty and offer me a ride back but they didn't so I took another 30 mins to walk back.

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Canal du Midi near Carcassonne - Lock

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More graffiti

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Carcassonne at night

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From below at night

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Night tryst

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"10% discount [for early patronage]. This 10% doesn't apply to products which benefit from the reduction in VAT"

I ended up in the square that I had resolved to avoid anyway, not least since yet another guidebook-recommended place was closed for dinner. I was tired and not really hungry but felt it was better to eat. Less than half the places were open for dinner (I suppose most people don't bunk in the old city).

The set menu was only €12,90 at "le plus vieux café de la cité" (the oldest café in the town). Outside of Paris, cafés and restaurants in France are actually cheaper than in Singapore.

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Glorious salad with lots of bacon

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I added on a "Or-Kina", the Carcassonne apéritif which was the sweetest of these.
Most of the "specialités terroir" (specialities of the region) have lots of pork.

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Very rough and hearty sausage

I discovered why no one else was sitting outside at night (there was a couple before me but they had left). It wasn't just that the wind was cold but my food was also getting cold fast because winter was coming.

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They had ice cream doused with vodka/tequila
The "Coupe Mystère" was chocolate and mystery ice cream.

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Bread and butter pudding. I didn't like the other choices. Lunch had been better overall but this was okay; the dessert was quite limp but the rest was not bad.
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