Monday, April 22, 2013

Lunching In Laval

The town of Laval sits on the edge of the Mayenne River, in the middle of what Marie-Morgane told me is one of the areas of France that produces the most milk. It's about two hours north and west of Tours, through countryside that looks more and more like Indiana. Established with a central castle and church in the 11th century, it's got a crowded but attractive old town area, and is surrounded by industrial development like the Lavalis complex. We saw the Cathédrale de la Trinité de Laval on the way in, and had a chance to walk by it on the way to the old quarter to find some lunch.

There's a nice walking path along the river, and I liked the little doggie WC area, especially in contrast to the poop-filled pathways I've been used to dodging through along the Loire. I'd like a chance to go back and spend a day exploring the town, looking at the older architecture and checking out the inside of the cathedral and visiting the château. And I could go back and look more closely at the cheese mold collection at the museum, too, though they'd probably charge me the entrance fee this time.

It was nice to walk in the sunshine, though the breeze was still rather brisk. We had to walk for about 10 minutes to get from the parking area near the cathedral to the bridge crossing over to the old quarter, where we found a restaurant that looked attractive enough. We set up on the terrace, taking sun or shade according to our various preferences, and ordered off the set menu for lunch.

It turned out, as we found on our return, that the Lavalis people had planned on taking us out to lunch, or at least having a cheesy snack between the morning and afternoon sessions, but the woman who gave us the guided tour of the museum either didn't know that or forgot to tell us in time. I'm glad we went to the restaurant, because it was nice to get out into the sun and the fresh air, and chat with friends, and eat seafood salad followed by veal in orange sauce, though I wish I'd gotten the fish for the main course, because it was served with spring vegetables instead of the winter remnants that must have seemed, to the chef, more appropriate with the veal. But it was tasty, and not too expensive, and a nice break before going back inside.

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