france

Going home, via many layovers

Going home, via many layovers

From here, it was back-to-back flights home, the first leg of which involved an overnight layover in Paris. It's been a while since my last sleepwalking (after a hefty dose of Benadryl, at the height of allergy season) tour here... I'd forgotten how much history and grandeur are written into the layout of every city block, and was surprised by how nice and understanding the drivers were towards the masses of tourists.

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In search of Carcassonne, and some other castles

In search of Carcassonne, and some other castles

Looking out from the top of the keep, we were also struck by how the farms, churches, and roads below actually looked like the pieces from the board game. Somewhere in the distance we thought we caught a glimpse of a patch of red, so we decided to go and check it out. After driving around aimlessly for half an hour through muddy farm roads, we found what we've been looking for – a poppy field!

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Provence, Deuxième Partie

Provence, Deuxième Partie

On our last free day, we had to go pay our respects to Jacques Cousteau, the father of modern SCUBA diving. In 1946 he famously tried to plumb the depths of the freshwater spring at Fontaine de Vaucluse, and had almost drowned in a carbon monoxide accident. There's a long, single one-way street that loops in and out of Fontaine, which we unfortunately had to circle three times before finding a parking spot. The trouble was worth it: sheltered from the dry heat on several sides by sheer hills, the delightful little town sits on a most dazzling emerald river emerging from a limestone cavern. 

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Provence, here we come again

Provence, here we come again

This was our second trip to the Abbaye de Sainte Croix in as many years (with very, very belated photos from both). Just up the hills from Salon de Provence, the Abbaye was built in the twelfth century, but is now a charming hotel with restaurant run by a staff thoughtful and obliging almost to a fault. 

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