And so, the time has come, we have packed up our things, farewelled new friends, and said goodbye to Quillan – for this trip at least.
Having spent a bit of time contemplating our leaving arrangements, we decided to extend our stay in Quillan right to the end of the three months, in order to make the most of the opportunity to celebrate Bastille Day in our ‘home town’, complete with front row view of the fireworks from our roof terrace. As it happened, it didn’t quite go to plan. Continue reading
On Monday 14 July, Dad, Ollie and I went rafting on the river Aude. It was awesome.
Me (middle) and Ollie (right) geared up ready to raft.
When we visited the village Quirbajou yesterday I was surprised to see it has a mairie (town hall). It therefore must be a commune, which is an administrative level in France. There is, as far as I know, no equivalent in New Zealand. Communes in France have a town hall, a mayor, and a town council. They have responsibility for many of the functions that in New Zealand would be carried out by district or city councils. But Quirbajou is so tiny! At the last census it had a population of 36. How can such a small population support a mayor and town council? Continue reading
Yesterday we took a short trip up the hill on the northern side of the Rebenty river, to the tiny village of Quirbajou, population 36. Continue reading
When we were first considering where in the Languedoc Roussillon-Pyrenees area to spend our three months, I spent many (many) hours googling for information and inspiration. Among my finds was a post by a British writer on her experience of putting her young son in the village school at Mosset.
It looked amazing. It sounded amazing. At the time we thought we would probably need to put Oliver in a college though, so Mosset seemed a bit small. I got in touch with the woman for advice, and she suggested Prades would be the closest spot with a college and a Lycee as well as primary schools So, we quite seriously considered Prades as a destination. Continue reading
Acquaintances in Quillan kindly invited us to a communal repas at their allotment last night, along with the other (French and English-speaking) jardiniers, their families and friends, in honour of Bastille Day and to celebrate nature’s abundance.
In the summer the town of Quillan really comes alive, with an influx of tourists and a programme of events and activities sponsored by the local commercants around the Place de la Republique.
One of the regular features is a night market – ‘sous la lune’, which takes place outside our windows from 6pm-midnight every Thursday evening in July and August.