Sunday we decided to drive to Bordeaux in the southwestern part of France. None of us had been there, and it is the major red wine producing region. The drive down took us about six hours, through lots of lovely green farm country. It was only when we got to within about 100 km that we began to see vines. We arrived in Bordeaux in late afternoon, and after visiting the Tourist Office in downtown, we decided to have a glass of wine in an outdoor café on the square. It happened that there was a stadium about 3 blocks away, and there was a jumbotron set up so that 60,000 people could watch France play Portugal in the finals of the Euro Cup soccer tournament. The fans were much like one would see at a Superbowl game, except there were national flags everywhere, and people with tricolors on their faces, arms, and clothes. It was crazy loud with people shouting and blowing air horns as they walked down the street on the way to stadium. We decided it would probably be a good idea to get out of downtown before the crowds got too crazy. So we went to our hotel, and checked in and then went to look for a restaurant for dinner. We didn’t realize the WHOLE country was waAf\tching that soccer match. After looking for an open restaurant for about an hour, we ended up eating at the French version of Applebee’s – not my idea of a great meal, but it was food.
Then next day we left Bordeaux and headed for the lovely little town of St. Emilion. It is a village in the middle of a large number of vineyards, and has dozens of Caves (wine shops). We went in to one and tasted a dozen different wines before making our purchases. Cici and I bought a bunch of wine and had it shipped back to the US. Then we had found cute little bottle carriers and each bought 9 bottles to take back to the house. After a very long drive with many detours, we got home at 10 PM – and it was still light outside!