Bistrot en Seine
Saturday, 26 April 2008 12:45

With boats moving again, we have been amusing ourselves by listening to the VHF chatter between the boats and La Capitainerie. Passenger boats or private, everyone communicates by VHF to enter or leave the port by a lock at one end and a controled tunnel at the other. When our VHF is on, we know all of the comings and goings of the port. It is a bit like being a nosy neighbor, but we tell ourselves that it is good for our French.

Canauxrama is a passenger boat company who works out of our port. Their boats are moored across from us, and we are used to them cruising by a couple of times a day. Recently we noticed that they have started evening cruises, and one night when the VHF was still turned on, we heard the Captain's office ask them, as they always do, "How many passengers and crew?" The answer made the guys in the office chuckle, as they had a crew of 4 for with only 2 passengers. There were jokes made back and forth about the new luxury cruise, and it caught our attention.

A few nights later, we heard that they had 8 passengers, then 11 another night, so we decided to take the cruise before it became as crowded as all of the other Seine cruises. We jumped on board for the 9pm cruise on Friday night, stopped at the bar to order a half bottle of wine, got into a nice conversation with the crew when we told them that we were neighbors, and we didn't need to worry about making sure we found good seats.

Sitting at a table with comfortable chairs and a glass of wine in front of us, we waved to neighbors as we cruised by their boats and entered the lock without a care in the world. For the next two hours we watched Paris glide by, passing under Le Pont des Arts we waved to everyone out enjoying the first warm spring night. People were walking or picnicing along the quais of the Seine, the monuments were lit against the evening sky, and we had front row seats for the best show in town.

Notice in our video how clear and light the sky was at 9:30pm and how many people were out on Le Pont des Arts.