Monthly Archives: May 2014

Regional specialties

While visiting the Bordeaux region for the Marathon de Sauternes, we are staying in a gite on a vineyard at Ste Foy la Longue. It’s a beautiful setting, as well as a rather beautiful gite. Three free bottles of the local wine come with our stay, and the place also has its own wine cellar attached. Continue reading

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Battle of the labyrinth (that’s the title of the fourth book in the Percy Jackson series)

Today was my first “quest” into the labyrinth.  Don’t blame me for saying “quest” my dad told me to. But anyway, if you don’t like hearing scary things because you get sick when you hear them,  I recommend skipping to the 3rd paragraph. Hint: We got lost in the labyrinth. Continue reading

There’s a welcome in the hillsides

When Ollie and Tom are at school, Stephen and I pop Nicholas in his car seat and indulge in our favourite pastime – village hopping. There is no shortage of little villages in the vicinity of Quillan and we have already covered quite a bit of the local terrain on nearby ‘D’ (Departmental) roads.

No two villages are quite the same in geography, size or architecture. Pretty much all of them have a church, though many of them no longer have a bar, tabac or a boulangerie, which gives them a sleepy, and slightly abandoned feel. Where they differ hugely, also, is in their vibe. It’s all about perceptions (and prejudices) but most of the time, it’s funny how you can get a pretty accurate feel for a place, just by driving through and observing what’s going on (or not going on). Continue reading