Saturday, May 27, 2017

Quiet Photo Day

Plans for a day trip to Vannes went out the window, traffic was a nightmare, stopped and then started.
Decided to turn off the highway and head to a little coastal town, boy were we in for a shock.
 Looking from our window towards the green pond. Waking to another hot day 35.
Googled a laundromat, pleased to have found that they have one of this brand in a lot of the towns.
Hung the washing in the back of the car and it dried.
Paddocks next door to our Abbey were being ploughed for seedling planting.

 Side trip ended in a coastal town called Arzon.
 A commune located at the extremity of the Rhuys peninsular in the Morbihan department in the Brittany region in northwestern France.
 Beautiful boats worth a fortune. There is something lovely looking at white boats against a blue sky. There were so many people, it seems when the sun comes out, so do the French population.
Finally found a car park, ate a pizza for lunch watching this view of the harbour.
No roses today, a nature strip of red poppies.

Friday, May 26, 2017

It's Hot at the Beach

 Drove from Limoges to outside of Nantes, 4 hour drive that took us nearly 5 1/2 hours.
Frustrated that we sat in traffic on the highway for approx 20 minutes at a time, stopped, then all of a sudden the traffic took off. For no reason at all.
 After trying to locate a laundromat with no luck, decided to head to the coast to fill in some time, a 20 minute drive took 90 minutes. Same thing, traffic stopped then took off.
On the edge of the Atlantic Ocean.
We drove to Pornic but after sitting in the traffic was told by a local that Thursday is the rostered day off in France for workers and they take the Friday as a long weekend.
 The Lighthouse at Pointe de Saint Gildas

 Downed these to try and cool down.
32 degrees.
 Rose of the day.
 Our Abbey accommodation for 2 nights.
The building dates from the 18th century and was formerly a Cistercian monk guesthouse.
The Delai Lama stayed here.
Our room is on the top floor, 2nd from the left, the widow is open trying to dry the washing.
There are no lifts, 2 flights of stairs to climb, I guess if the monks and the DL walked up, I can also.
John finally saw a train.....

Thursday, May 25, 2017

The Dish Cabinet

 Musee National Adrien Doubouche, Limoges.
The national porcelain museum.

 The museum was created in 1845, thanks to patron Adrien Dubouche.

 Limoges porcelain is made from the local white clay called Kaolin.
Traditional porcelain is classified if you can hold the piece up to the light and it can be seen through.
 Interesting way to show the colours of the pigments used to decorate.




 The museum consisted of 3 floors of ceramics.
As each floor progressed it was noticed that the dishes became fancier.



 An elegant piece.




 This was huge, another favourite piece.

 The collections date from Antiquity to the XVIIIth century modern day.
Not a traditional dish, I loved this piece.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Point on the Map

Left Toulouse after a great stay at the BandB, we were well looked after and our hostess made us fresh Madeleine's every morning for breakfast.
We started driving for a few hours and realised the non-toll roads were not getting us anywhere quick, so turned the tolls back on the navigator. 
 Drove through Cahors, over the Lot River and stopped for a breather.
This area is known for deep red wines.

 Abbey on the Lot River.
Our last stop before hitting the tollways. 
After we finally reached our BandB, dropped our cases off and went for a drive.
We find the local area and pick a village and go for it. You never know what you find when you select a place on the map at random. Our 2012 France Road Atlas has done us well.

 Chose a small village and was not disappointed. 
 Gateway to the village.

 Our Chateau BandB for 2 nights, 20 minutes out of Limoges.
Natalie and Oliver our hosts, made us very welcome.
Have been told, their 2 geese are friendly.
The Chateau is 3,000 years old, they bought it 20 years ago and have been doing it up.
Very impressed, it has a lift to the different floors. No carrying cases up flights of stairs.
 Sharon, we have a chair in our room. Thought of you when we saw  it.
Bathroom in our room, finding the baths hard to get in and out of.
Hanging out for a normal shower!!!
Climbing rose of the day for Vireya and Jeanette.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

A Quilter Takes Notice.....

After a visit to the laundromat, worked out how to use the washing machine in French, took a drive east of Toulouse. First stop was Albi. 
 Cathedral Sainte-Cecile.
This Gothic Cathedral, constructed in 1282, is the largest brick building in the world.
With a fortress like exterior, it's walls, vaults and side Chapels are richly  painted.
 Seen from miles away.


 The comment made was, "trust you to notice the quilt block patterns".





 Beautiful hand written calligraphy.

 Our next stop on the route was Gaillac on the Tarn River, the town developed around the Abbey of the Benedictine Monks more than 1,000 years ago.
 Beautiful bridges.
 A Juliet balcony.
 Final stop was the hillside village of Cordes-sur-Ciel.
Sadly, we drove around in circles for 30 minutes trying to get a car park. It is a major tourist attraction. Perhaps another time for a  visit.
We found a dirt lane, pulled over and sat in the sun, ate a salad baguette with a thermos of coffee for lunch. Then headed back to Toulouse.
One thing we have noticed, French drivers do not use indicators and bike riders are worst than in Amsterdam. No helmets are worn. Speed on highways is 130km per hour, The fastest we have got to is 124kmph.