We have been blessed in many, many ways over our years of travelling. Rescheduled flights, technical issues, late departures and overnight delays - could be counted on the fingers of one hand (ferries... that's a different matter entirely). But when it comes to French trains, we are often cursed. In fact if we have a booking... it almost certainly predicts a train strike that day. But today everything went 100% smoothly. Left Gare St Lazare in Paris on the button of 10.10 am. The driver may well have dawdled on his trip to the Normandy countryside, but 15 minutes late is really quite on time when you're ecstatic there's not been a strike. We and our tonnes of bags leaped off fairly smartly in Caen (case of having to... people queued up behind us and people on the platform just itching to climb aboard). Our dear friends Lee & Annie met us at the station and the question of the day became... Where to for lunch? They said we'd never guess and they were right. We went to the U.S. of A! Well not all the way, but we did go to the Memphis Diner in Caen - more American than apple pie (and that was also on the menu!) Wow! Felt like we were in movie Pulp Fiction when John Travolta has a $5 shake. James had a sloppy joe - a burger as it turns out - and I had a very un-American smoked salmon salad. I was saving tummy space for the next three days. From lunch we motored across to an old monastery. Basically they had the ladies one and the mens one and Caen was more or less destroyed during WWII. The mens one was rebuilt... just saying is all. It also is the final resting place for William the Conqueror which may have had something to do with resource allocation. Stunning church but the ruins of the ladies monastery were even more beautiful against the gathering storm clouds. We then took a stroll around Chateau de Caen (or Caen Castle). Another stomping ground of William and his line. From there we figured... home to St Lo and a bit of a feets up. Still recovering from Paris as it were. But we had said at lunch how we always regretted not visiting the Bayeux Tapestry back in 2012... as it gets mentioned regularly through our travels. So off to Bayeux and finally, the tapestry, she is seen. And it was brilliant - the narrative and accompanying music as you walk around its 70 metre length, really brought the story to life (and we had wondered how good a visit to a almost 1000 year old embroidery hanging could really be - seriously 1070s is the current 'best guess' for date of production). Monday the four of us gorged ourself on 4 dozen oysters, fresh from the farm and expertly shucked by Lee, followed by a leg of lamb from NZ (in my honour). Tuesday it was off-exploring and we went first to the pretty little village of Saint Suliac (2nd prettiest in France in the latest competition... apparently) and from there to the walled corsair town of St Malo in Bretagne (pron: Brittany, but you knew that even if we didn't). We dined in a restaurant within the ramparts (curry mussels... ) and then visited Granville - a harbour town perched on a hill. The drive home saw a quick detour through Villedieu des Poeles - known for its copper and bells - it's even made a church bell for The Vatican. Wednesday was supposed to be stress free and easy and so it was until 11 am when we received an email from Stena Line (to be avoided like the plague), saying (and I'm paraphrasing "jolly sorry, but due to technical reasons, that is, we scheduled a trip but there aren't enough passengers to make a profit, your ferry to Ireland later today has just been canned... please phone our operators and spend an hour being repeatedly cut-off, misunderstood and re-booked in chairs on Friday night's sailing... not a cabin because the Friday sailing will be full with everyone we've cancelled today and there are no cabins left. Or you can have a full(ish) refund and have to harass us via email to also refund your payment fee on the sailing we've just cancelled for you". So yes, obviously paraphrasing, but that's what happened. Thankfully Irish Ferries had a sailing on Thursday, albeit from Roscoff which was a 3 hour drive from home instead of a 1 hour drive. Beautiful ship too... So we rebooked on that and tried to relax for the rest of Wednesday. Grrrrr. Thursday was an alarm clock day (you see that's why house-sitting is more restful that travelling - hardly ever need an alarm). It was a long and hair-raising drive to Roscoff but we found it to be the most beautiful little town we've never, ever heard off (Roscoff Harbour is today's picture). We had a traditional Breton lunch at a creperie - savoury ham, egg and cheese and sweet (chocolate) accompanied by cider and followed by coffee. We were at the ferry terminal by 3 pm and not boarding til 6 pm (as it turned out) - so it was lovely to sit and contemplate life in general and read our kindles for a few hours. We had thought we'd be boarding via a gangway (silly us) but there were only about 30 of us foot passengers though 100s of others on board with vehicles. In the end we got on a little bus and were driven into the belly of the ship before taking a lift up to our cabin. And a very sweet little en-suite cabin it was too. Thankfully we ran into new friends on our way to the cabin and they said, if you're planning dinner in the nice restaurant then reserve a spot quick smart... so we dumped the bags, ran up two levels and immediately sat down for dinner at 7 pm. We admit to feeling the tiniest bit guilty when they arrived at 7.30 or so and there wasn't a table ready for them. We would have felt more guilty, but were busy tucking into a feast - seafood chowder/crab ravioli with pesto and for main course - steak and a lamb shank off a very large lamb. In some countries it would count as a whole leg of lamb. James was a darling (at heart it's in part about self-preservation) and ran down to the cabin to get the world's best sea-sickness pills for me - called Stugeron. Available over the counter in vast swathes of the world (including the UK who post them to me periodically on demand) but not in Australia or the USA. Just because some people get the odd hallucination. Honestly. Anyway, you can see from the photos I'm even paler than my usual semi-transparent shade - but the pills, they worked and after a couple of lovely French wines and no room for cheese or dessert we repaired to the cabino, had a shower and settled in for the night. Well as settled as you can be when the ship is going up and down 6 metres at a time. If in doubt... take more pills. Slept eventually and kept dinner. Can't ask for much more than that when sailing from France to Ireland - Bon Voyage? Oui! Bien Sur!