Saturday, November 18, 2006

We decided to rent the golf cart at the Versailles Gardens, since Miss kenju had been there before and knew what a trek it was. The attendant gives you a route plan, which is encased in something plastic that makes it look similar to a restaurant menu.

The cart runs on batteries and has a GPS system, which becomes clear as you pass the first notable site and the speaker in the roof of the cart booms out the particulars. Miss kenju drove and I provided the directions from the route plan. We marvelled at the spaciousness and variability of the gardens, and while there were few flowers blooming this time of year, we could imagine what a riot of color it would be in the spring and summer.

We were fine until the final third of the route, where we discovered a detour, due to some fountain remodeling or repair. We attempted to follow the "detour" sign for pedestrians, and were hauled up short by the cart, which stopped in the middle of the track.

"You are entering a restricted area! Do not attempt to proceed! Follow the planned route! "

All that was booming out over the loudspeaker, as people walking turned around to gawk at us and see what was making all the racket. We quickly found that the cart would not go forward at that point, so Miss kenju had to back up for about the length of 2-3 city blocks until we could retrace our route and go back the way we had come, fuming all the way!

We had to be back at the cart stand exactly one hour after setting off, and it was clear that due to the detour and retracing all our route, we would not make it in time. Sure enough, we were 10 minutes late. We hit the ground explaining to the attendant that he had failed to make us aware of the detour and therefore, we could not be held accountable for the 10 minute delay. He apparently didn't want to argue the point (even though he swore that he HAD told us about it) and waved us away dismissively.

13 comments:

Wordnerd said...

Ah, international shame! I love it. Glad you left your mark there! The pics are incredible, by the way. I'm going back to look at them again.

Here from Michele's, although you KNOW I'd have come here on my own...

Carmi said...

Leave it to the French to wave dismissively. Sometimes, I swear they know no other way!

I feel as if I have explored this rich landscape with you. Detour and all. You most certainly have written the book on travel photography best practices.

Back from Michele's.

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

these pictures give one some idea of the scope of Versailles...It truly is awesome!...The trip in the cart sounds kind of difficult, to say the keast! (lol) What a fabulous trip Judy....!

srp said...

There is a famous palace just outside of Vienna that was built on the same design as the Versailles. It is gorgeous and complete with fabulous gardens and fountains. One area in the garden has an outdoor amphitheater where operas were performed. We needed a golf cart there as well.

Jamie Dawn said...

You are in a restricted area!!!!
How funny and kind of embarrassing. It makes for a great story though. You will certainly not forget that!
I enjoyed all the photos of the paintings and statues and gardens. How very lovely!
I think that road in Bolivia looks very interesting, but I'm not interested in driving on it. The drop off looks a bit steep. Certain death for anyone who goes over the edge.

Thanks for checking in with me. We are scheduled to move into our new house over the Thanksgiving weekend. I don't know if I will be cooking our feast here or there. It all depends on if my kitchen stuff is moved there already or not.
I hope to be settled in before too long. Also, my college semester ends on Dec. 11th. Praise Jesus!!!!!
After things settle down some, I will get back into consistent posting and blogging again.
I hope you and your loved ones have a wonderful Thanksgiving!!

Moogie said...

I have really enjoyed reading about your trip and viewing all of the photos. I feel as if I was right there with you. Thank you so much for sharing it with us. I'm sorry about the detour though I'm glad you didn't have to pay any extra.

Wordnerd said...

This had to have been an amazing adventure for you, if the pictures are any indication.

Visiting this time from Michele's!

Anonymous said...

Versailles is one of the few places I can boast of seeing in person. I loved the vast grounds. Unfortunately my visit coincided with my obsession with wearing my mickey mouse hat. So no decent pictures available.Your pictures are lovely. WAaaaaaaaH!! I would give my left little finger to be able to visit again. ( okay maybe half the little finger )

sage said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
sage said...

that's a pretty impressive golf cart you had--knowing when you were where you shouldn't be and chastising for properly! I might of driven into one of those ponds. Nice pictures, a great place for a surrender, eh?

Carolyn said...

I'm so enjoying the continual flow of photos from your trip. Just curious: How many pictures did you take in all? Or how many cards did it take in a digi camera?

Pearl said...

That's quite the controlling golf cart. I suppose there'd be no orderly grass left if routes weren't so prescribed and enforced.

Shephard said...

Oh, a golf cart; now THAT is smart.
I love that you got that planter full of flowers in the shot.
What a place.
~S