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Paris CDG to Saint Jean de Losne

From Cushla and John

Paris Charles de Gaulle  to Saint Jean de Losne 

Zut Alors  what a journey from Paris!!!  We thought we were unlucky to arrive in Paris on the first day of the French train strike.  It was chaos with queues of people zig zagging throughout the entire airport.  We waited for  1 1/2 hours in the queue at the CDG train station only to be advised that they were only selling passes into the city central - we had to buy onward train travel from there!!!  Where were the signs advising this?  It’s so French!  

We gave up on the train idea with the thought of waiting in an even longer queue for what was sure to be sold out by then.  Instead  we spent about as long again trying to find a car to hire and when we finally succeeded and hit the roads they were gridlocked because of the train strike…..  Truely, it was like Auckland rush hour traffic on holiday weekend times two!!!   However, two days later we considered ourselves extremely lucky to have got out of Paris when we did as the floods that followed were soooo bad!   Poor Paris, hit again!

La riviere Seine broke it’s banks and caused a once in a century flood.   All means of transport stopped.   All the tourist attractions were closed and buildings flooded.  La Louvre had to move many of it’s artworks for protection.

We are very grateful to be here on our boat in a quiet little port called Saint Jean de Losne.  Nobody has been able to leave though due to the flooded rivers and canals making the waterways unsafe for passage.   Instead we have enjoyed a very social time catching up with friends from last year. We have Waitui ship shape and ready to go complete with a new paint job.  She looks very smart.

Today we are venturing out though.  The river levels have dropped and the flow has slowed considerable.  We are off to Dole in convoy with friends from Gilbralta on a little boat called Molly. That will be fun going though the locks together. 

Yahoo, we are on our way!

le 10 juin 2016

The capital of barging in France

The town of Saint Jean de Losne is situated at the southern extremity of the canal, where the water flows in to the river Saône.

The beginning or the end of the Burgundy canal, depending on your cruise itinerary. You should find everything you need. From dry dock, barge construction to food supplies. This is one of the capitals for the barging world, a place where you can find any type of engine part for any engine, from Boudin to Volvo. There are some of the most skilled wealders available, mechanics who know Leyand, Perkins and Scania motors. Skillfully milled prop-shafts and propellors. The local cafes are still occupied by bargees that are retired or waiting for another voyage, or maybe the river Soône is in flood and the level is too high for navigation. The town of Saint Jean is a very active place, but there always remains a sad side, it is a place of passage, transition, if you stay here for a long period it is generally because there is something wrong with your barge or boat.

The canal above lock 76

The first stretch of canal above lock 76 is a hive of activity, with barges being, built, rebuilt, repaired, sold and converted. During the winter months,many barges will come to hibernate for a few month.

Dry dock facility

The Atelier Fluvial is one of the most experienced barge dry docks in France, with years of talent and skilled craftsman ready to offer their services. It is always interesting to watch the barges entering the dry-dock and the work being accomplished.

Saone barge

Everything at Saint Usage and Saint Jean is about barging, there are pieces of boats everywhere and if you need to find a spare part, then this is the place to come. People and barges come and leave Saint Jean all year round, it is a wonderful place to meet others and share barging experiences.

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