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On Monday Omar and I headed to the Château de Fontainebleau, which I had wanted to visit with Manu a few weeks back. Google maps told us how to get there:

Getting to Fontainebleau -- easy peasy!

Getting to Fontainebleau — easy peasy!

So we went to Gare de Lyon and looked for the R train to Fontainbleau. Piece of cake! Except we never saw any R anywhere, even after wandering around all over the place and asking several helpful people — though not having patience to wait in the long lines at the information desks. Finally we discovered a train to Montargis on track M on a particular level of one of the several huge rooms of the station.

Our next travel issue arose when the train stopped for an extended period at Bois le Roi, the next to last station. We wondered what to do when a young Czech woman opposite us who had been aloof up to this point proposed that we share a taxi to Fontainebleau. She gave me a number since she said that her phone was temporarily out of order for some reason. My call didn’t go through but a text got a quick reply. Fortunately the train started up before we gave out any credit card numbers since Omar pointed out later that this could all quite possibly be a scam.

I had been under the impression that the train station was quite near the Château but in fact it was about two miles away so we waited for a bus, which filled, then waited for the next bus, which we got on. Fortunately the Château was open late enough that we had time for a leisurely visit before the building closed.

Fontainebleau from the grounds

Fontainebleau from the grounds

Stairs at Fontainebleau

Famous stairs at Fontainebleau

Hall of Diana at Fontainebleau

Hall of Diana at Fontainebleau

Bob at Fontainebleau

Bob at Fontainebleau

The salamander is the symbol of Francois I. At Fontainebleau

The salamander is the symbol of Francois I. At Fontainebleau

Marie Antoinette's bed at Fontainebleau. (Tho she never got to sleep in it.)

Marie Antoinette‘s bed at Fontainebleau. (Tho she never got to sleep in it.)

Napoleon I's throne at Fontainebleau. Yes, he was short!

Throne room at Fontainebleau. The only remaining throne in France.

The chapel at Fontainebleau

The chapel at Fontainebleau

We walked the two miles back to the train station, partly along this lake

We walked the two miles back to the train station, partly along this lake

When we got to the tracks on our walk we realized we had lost some elevation!

When we got to the tracks on our walk we realized we had lost some elevation!