Day 17 — July 17, 1996 (Wednesday)
17.07.1996 - 18.07.1996
Today is the day they supposedly clean our room, so we got up early to be sure to follow all the “rules.” After breakfast we washed our few dishes and Ed took the little bit of garbage out. We cleared the floors, bathroom and w.c. so “le maid” would have an unobstructed view. Then we left — not a rule, but it seemed sensible.
Headed south through Sisteron toward Digne and soon saw some huge vertical rock formations. I grabbed my camera just as the road headed the other way. Looked on my map to discover the rocks were Les Penitents at Les Mées.
Arrived at Digne-les-Bains and parked by the river. Since it was almost lunch time, the parking meter gave us an extra hour. We wandered through the old town and up and down a tree-covered main street. Shops were closed for lunch so we decided to eat. Ed found an outdoor café with a fountain and we ducked under an umbrella to escape the sun. We tried to order the 59F menu with chicken; however, our waiter said they didn’t have that but did have the plate du jour with something that sounded chickeny so we said okay. It turned out to be a boneless chicken breast stuffed with something delicious and a stroganoff-like mushroom sauce on fettucini. Good choice!
Digne les Bains web site
Digne les Bains city web site
Walked up and down a few more streets and then rescued the car from the metered lot and headed home. When we got to the turnoff to Les Mées, we decided to go find the giant vertical rocks, les Penitents. Coming off our second roundabout we saw French police stopping cars. We approached slowly but they waved us on.
It only took a few more minutes to get to the rocks and there was a little park there with an information booth. As we walked in, the young lady in charge asked where we were from, and discovering we were American, broke into pretty good English. She gave us info in English and played a French videotape for us. We thanked her and left to take pictures. The Penitents of Les Mées web site
With only one wrong turn, we again headed north. Ed missed our turnoff at D900 so we decided to check out Gap. It was a pretty little city, but it had started to rain so we decided to save it for another day. We headed back to Jausiers with a short stop at a farm market for wine, confiture and some fresh raspberries.
Walked in to discover our cleaning lady not only didn’t do much cleaning; she left the veranda door wide open. Fortunately, it’s a second story balcony, but we were not pleased. We ate dinner inside as a solid rain started and shows no sign of letting up.