A barge cruise in France
Six classmates from Caz met in France in late September for a wonderful get-together in Paris and a cruise on a barge on the Marne. Shown at left aboard the Raymonde, in the back row, from left to right are Marjorie Maher Kulash, Ellen Varmus Bloch and Eleanor Frey Counselman; front row, Mary Baughman, Freya Lund Sonenstein and Barbara Bywater Creed. (Note the purple table—all the furniture on the barge's terrace, and lots elsewhere, was purple!)
Sadly, the group was short one member. Louise Overstreet Maley had to cancel because she broke a patella shortly before the tour began!
One of the highlights of the trip was a magnificent multi-course dinner, with wine pairings, at Bistrot du Sommelier, a favorite of Barbara and Chris Creed. Diners around the table, starting in the lower left, are Barbara, Eleanor, Burt Sonenstein, Freya, Damian Kulash, Marjorie, Chris, Mary, Roger Wallace, Ellen, and Chuck Counselman.
Most of the visit was spent as part of a Road Scholar program, "Paris and the Champagne Region: Voyage into World War I History a Century Later." The barge had only 18 passengers: the six classmates, husbands, six other participants (who were great fun) and an outstanding tour guide. But even on such a small bateau, the chef provided wonderful three-course lunches and four-course dinners.
(For those of you who are interested, Road Scholar can arrange small group programs. The trick, of course, is getting everyone to agree on time, place and topic.)
Side trips included a champagne cellar (with samples, of course); Reims, especially the cathedral; several World War I memorials and museums, and the Belleau Woods battlefield. The cruise went from Epernay to Paris, where the grand finale was cruising on the Seine through Paris in the fading light of evening.