during this 3h-hike, I was in awe at the wonderful landscape, and after I saw the ruins of an old farm among the Andorran chalets, I recalled Steve Jobs’ wise and realistic encouragement:“I’ve looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: if today were the last day of my life, would I want to […]
Our friends at Fandango have thrown down the gauntlet. The challenge, On The Street Where I Live. You can visit them at: https://fivedotoh.com/2018/08/01/on-the-street-where-i-live/ Thank you Fandango.
“Home is where you feel loved, appreciated and safe.” – Tracy Taylor
While France may not be the land of my birth, it is the home of my heart.
Boulangerie (Bakery) not yet open for the evening rush
Most of the opposite side of our street is the wall dividing between village and the river.
The old pharmacy is for sale and has much to offer. It would be ideal for a business with residence above.
The old café is for sale as the new owners moved it down the road so they had more room and plenty of outside space. Upstairs is a working hotel.
Stop and smell the roses, or whatever else is in bloom and perhaps a sprig of rosemary.
The bank is to the left but we shall stay on my street.
Chambre d’hotes and large houses (similar to a bed and breakfast)
Bibliothèque (Library) During the summer months it also doubles as the Tourist Office.
Foyer (for indoor events including cinema)
Small market with gas pumps
The new café
Alas, it is a long road that I live on. What you see here, barely scratches the surface and at best, I shall hope it tempts you to visit the small villages in France. We have much to offer.
Mea culpa, mea culpa… I’ve been so wrapped up in the season, I have failed to get the post and photos out. Fête nationale celebrates Independence. It is a day of feasting and of remembrance. At 11:30 am, each village will gather at their memorial to remember those who gave their lives for France.
A short walk across the footbridge and I see people arriving and reserving their seats. Some chairs are already turned inward and names written on the white paper tablecloth. Of course there is always a bit of switching at some point. A seat is often found for anyone who might arrive late or be alone. Here you are never alone long unless you choose to be.
To the left of the footbridge is a picnic area, well shaded, and four massive barbeque pits. To the right of those pits is a smooth area where, in good weather, you will find groups playing boules / pétanque.
The gathering begins. You can see a bit of the roof over the snack bar where you can pick up your chosen apperitif. The socializing has begun and will last until the wee hours of the morning.
As you can see, things are set up for the DJ in the background.
Looking at this photo just now, I can see the green shutters of my house in the space between Michel and the young girl he is speaking with.
After sunset, the chateau will be aglow. After dessert, about 10:30pm the fireworks will begin. They are shot from just behind the chateau and is quite a vision.
Manon is as sweet as she looks. Her father is one of the four doctors in the village.
Baugettes, wine, and salad ( baby spinach, red onion and sliced apricots in a smashing vinegrette) and the meal has begun. Besides the bottles of wine, and there are many, there is also bottled water. There is a large variety of tableware as here, each person or family, bring their own.
While you cannot see the chateau through the trees, the old clock-tower is well lit. Next year I shall have to remember to sit on the other side so I have a better view of the chateau.
A literal cascade of feu d’artifice down the front of the chateau. Alas, I’m afraid it didn’t photograph well.
C’est magnifique! You can see the cascade of fire pouring down the front of the chateau and the rockets shooting toward the stars.
La chateau in all her glory.
Dance, dance, dance… The tables have been cleared away as were most of the chairs. The remaining chairs off to the side. The dancing will continue most of the night. Even people from nearby villages will come over to dance having had dinner in their own village first. You will often see parents and grandparents dancing with even the youngest of babies in their arms. As soon as they can stand, they are out there dancing the night away.
Bonne Fête et Bisous,
If the last two posts haven’t inspired you, perhaps you will find something here?
Antoine Bonnet creates in wood, stone and earth. Please visit his website and learn more. http://www.antoine-bonnet.com/
Oana Damman is one local artist that I have had the pleasure of meeting a number of times over the years. She is inspired by the works of Van Gogh, Cézanne and Chagall. Please take a few moments and visit her website: oana-damman.com You won’t be disappointed.
Jacques Duault graciously allowed me to photograph his work. Alas, he himself does not care to be photographed. A position I respect and share. Please visit his site: http://jacquesduault.com/
Gerard Engels is hard at work and grateful for a small amount of shade as it is a very warm morning and the full summer heat is upon us. Alas, there is no website for monsieur Engels. He does offer an email address: email@example.com or you could direct questions about him or any of the artists by contacting the gracious hosts at Eurocultures. https://eurocultures.fr/ You will also find a calendar for upcoming events and information should you want to be included in this event next year or any of their other projects.
Albas is such a charming and tranquile village. However, when they put on an exhibition or other event they do themselves proud. Before signing off today, I will share a few more photos from my wandering about.
Even the smallest village will have a foyer for indoor events and an outdoor space such as the one above. You don’t see it in this photo but there is a small, shed/kitchen to the left and to the right a large concrete circle often used for dancing under the stars, village feasts…
There are still photos and artists to be shared. There will be one more in this series and I thank you for joining me.
Delicious and not just the food!
Even if you live far away from Provence, you can still enjoy a little taste of this region with the following Provençal menu that I have created for you. By clicking on the links, you will find the recipes in French or in English.
Furthermore, if you want to immerse yourself into life in Provence a bit more, you can watch the following two films Jean de Floretteand Manon des Sources which were filmed in the Vaucluse department.
Bienvenue en Provence!
Aperitif / Appetizer
Entrée / Starter
Plat principal / Main course
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I had been most anxious to visit this museum/hospital, for some time. When Rita said she wanted to visit the cave projection show, previous post, the plan for her most recent visit took shape. A quiet intuitive individual, I had a feeling that the walls may talk. They do whisper if one is silent and willing to hear.
Was it wishful thinking or simply artistic license that Van Gogh applied his brushes to create a much more sumptious version of his true quarters? Patients rooms were not decorated with art work and this special guest had access to another room within the hospital for a studio and much of his work was completed on the hospital grounds. Alas, there is no access to his atelier which leads this visitor to believe there is really no trace of it or that it is in the part of the hospital that is still active as a Psychiatric Hospital.
Haunted with thoughts of suicide, Van Gogh chose a voluntary admission to the hospital at Saint Remy on 8 May 1889. He would stay there for a year and during this time would restle with bouts of deep depression. During his stay from May 1889-May 1890, he was most prolific in his work and produced a total of 142 pieces including Starry Night, Sunflowers, Irises, and a self-portrait that says so much about the man. If you have a favorite (that is a tough one) you can check to see if it was painted during his time at the hospital at the following site: http://vggallery.com/painting/by_period/st_remy.htm
The view from his window of some of the terraced gardens.
Our visit took place in late October so instead of the stunning flowers that would appear in Spring, we had the lovely colors of autumn. Van Gogh took his inspiration from nature so saw the beauty in all that it offered.
Up the steps and just past the chapel, you will find the entrance to where Van Gogh’s room is. While there are other rooms here that once housed patients, those were not open. However, the salle de bains and the kitchen were housed there and I hope you find those photos as interesting as I do.
The salle de bains (bathroom) is situated directly across the hallway from the entry door to the chambre de Van Gogh.
The kitchen, no longer in use, is maintained as it was during the time of Van Gogh.
An inner courtyard that still had some blooms.
If you enjoyed this at all, I do hope you will check out the book LET ME TELL YOU ABOUT A MAN I KNEW by Susan Fletcher. She weaves a beautiful story about Van Gogh and some of the people who actually resided at the hospital at that time.
On one side of the property we discovered an ancient site for both Greek and Roman villages. There was so much to see there, I fear that it may take more than one post to share some of its secrets. Like here, my camera just gets carried away…