We started the day in Dijon at the oldest business in the same storefront in France, Miele Moutard, the mustard shop, has been in this very location continuously since the mid-19th century. This is a picture of the mustard bar where there most sought after flavors are on tap. You choose a black or cream colored jar and they fill it with your choice. There are also a myriad of choices of other flavors in smaller jars as well as a selection of fine oils and vinegars. Fantastic gift store with a truly unique item that is particular to Dijon.
After making our selections, we went back to our hotel and checked out to head to Chamonix. For some reason the GPS in our rental car says it is taking us the fastest way to a particular destination but the route is always on the smaller back roads and not the tollways. While I actually prefer meandering through the many small villages in France rather than blasting through on a motorway that could be anywhere in the world, today we had too many kilometers to travel so we turned the GPS off and resorted to a very old school method of navigation, an actual paper map that we purchased at a rest stop off the tollway.
The rest stops, by the way, are only similar to those in America in that they have gas stations, food, and restrooms. The difference is in the extreme level of cleanliness, the pet friendly areas, and the terrific food offered. We stopped at one which featured rotisserie chicken and they had a cafeteria style set up with various other entrees also as well as salads and desserts. You could buy a “menu” which included two or three courses for a reasonable price and the chicken looked and smell good even to me and I have not eaten meat since 1999.
We had coffee at the rest stop and bought the map (which pleased Jack greatly, the coffee AND the map 🙂 and then a few hours later stopped for gas and made a picnic of a baguette and pepper brie for lunch.
We got to Chamonix by 5 or so and again had no trouble at all finding a reasonably priced room for the night though booking.com. It has been a revelation to me how like the States this road-tripping is here in France. I had been under a mistaken impression that it would be so difficult to do things on the fly. Not true! It really is no more difficult to explore around than it is at home. Of course, this is helped here by the fact that it is late September so we are not running into a situation where vacancies are an issue. Jack is of course unsurprised since he travelled in this manner many times during the almost 4 years he was living in The Netherlands.
Mont Blanc from the small balcony outside of our room. The photo does not do it justice. I will try again tomorrow. Cloudy much of the day today and some significant rain during our drive but dry once we arrived.
Lovely river running through Chamonix.
Chamonix is very pretty, more Swiss looking than French. It has a ski resort off season feel similar to Winter Park, Breckenridge et.al. We ate dinner at an omeletterie. (the French love their omelets). I like a good omelet myself and am a fan of eggs for dinner so we enjoyed our omelets with green salad and fries. Simple food and relatively inexpensive.
Tomorrow we want to see if we can ride the tram up the mountain. We are unsure if it is possible to do that now but will find out in the morning. Then we want to see Annecy, a town about an hour away that we hear marvelous things about, and then on to Lyons.