When you move to France, you have to have a medical exam from the French immigration office, known as OFII. The OFII office nearest to us is in Annecy (pronounced Aahn-see and not Ann-eh-see, because as usual, the French have given up on some letters in the word). Annecy is about 90 minutes from Le Tour. That distance and the timing necessitated a road trip.
Emily and I have not had the occasion or desire to do any big road trips since we moved here and do not look forward to doing them often. At least not yet. This is mainly due to the fact that we are still uncomfortable driving around in France. There is no real reason for this discomfort other than the fact that we are scared. We are scared because we are uncomfortable and vice versa.
The main thoroughfares in France are some of the best roads we have ever driven on. If there is a bump on the highway we haven’t found it yet. It is true that the roads through little villages are a bit on the narrow side, slightly wider than a US bike path is normal. Our journey to Annecy was all on big highways though so there was no need to worry about narrow roads. There were tolls however and those made us nervous. As it turned out though, the toll stations were easy to navigate and round trip cost us a little less than 20 Euros.
Annecy is mainly known for it’s lake, aptly named Lac Annecy. It is a medium sized lake surrounded by large hills and it is quite beautiful.
The lake draws a lot of tourists and there are many boats for rent or for hire, including sail boats.
There are also quite a few statues and other pieces of art to view around town.
I think the main part of Annecy reminded me of the Pearl Street area of Boulder as it had lots of restaurants and shops and was for the most part a pedestrian only area.
Our appointment with the doctor went fine and was just a series of questions along with height and weight and an eye test. The appointment took about an hour and we were on our way back to the car which was parked in a parking garage that had classical music playing. Of course there were some distractions between us and our car. Namely shops selling all manner of bread and sweets. As shown below with Emily having found a small beignet.
While I was waiting for Emily, I too found some nourishment.
Technically the sign on the door says, “Without Gluten Free” but I got their meaning and had to go in and buy some sweets for myself.
We also saw what appeared to be an imminent game of unintentional dominoes.
Our trip was very successful and we are looking forward to visiting Annecy again in the future. It is a possible drier winter running area that offers many trails around the lake.
This week is UTMB week which means there are lots of spandex clad runners hanging about the Cham valley. If you are unfamiliar with UTMB, www.irunfar.com has a nice preview of the various races. Americans have a fair chance in several of the different races this year so hopefully they can perform on the biggest trail running stage in the world.
Emily and I meanwhile, will be trying our best to avoid the madhouse that is Chamonix during this week. The main street through town is literally shoulder to shoulder with people and the buses are packed like sardines in a can. Thankfully Le Tour is fairly removed from all the hustle and bustle.
Now go out and be consistent!