Thursday, July 20, 2006

France Noizay Day 12

We had breakfast on the back terrace of the hotel. Afterwards, Sharon and Jack played tennis for an hour.

The plan for the day was to head for Chambord. This is the largest French Chateau; it has 440 rooms and 365 fireplaces. Chambord is surrounded by Europe's largest enclosed forest park. Given that the audio hours were more than one and a half hours long, we decided against it. We plotted our own path using the map. The scale of the place is impressive, but we did not enjoy this site as much as we did Chenonceau. Chenonceau seemed more consistent, while Chambord seems more like a thrown together museum and less like somewhere that people lived. We had a late light lunch in the village.

When we got back to Château de Noizay, we headed down to the pool. While we were sitting there, a couple comes down with two young kids. The husband seemed very familar; Sharon and I were trying to puzzle out how we knew him. Sharon finally realized that it was Joshua Malina who played the character Will Bailey on West Wing. While we were sitting there trying to decide if we should say something to him, he commented on the book that Sharon was reading. This gave us an opportunity to confirm who he was. We ended up to talking them for a little while. In a stranger twist, his wife is from Clarksburg and went to Delta High School. She knows a number of my relatives.

We had dinner in the restaurant at the Chateau. While this had the potential to be the second best meal that we had on the trip, the room was so hot and stuffy that all I remember about the evening was sitting there and sweating.

Over dinner, we agreed that we probably only needed one and a half days in the Loire Valley, rather than three. We felt like we wanted more time in Paris and less in this region. As a result, we decide to get up early on Friday and head back to Paris.

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