Friday, January 1, 2010
West to Adventure
Our drive across France.
We left the old port of Antibes at about 8:00 am, and headed west on A8. The Citroen was responsive considering that it hag 100 pounds of luggage cocooned in a weatherproof carryall sack strapped on the roof, and another 200 pounds of crammed luggage stuffed into it. Cindy as copilot and Caleigh behind her in the rear seat. The driving weather could not have been better slightly overcast with occasional sunlight, and not much wind.
The French landscape was sleeping in its grey blanket as we rushed in the direction of Dordogne. The annually vibrant fields lay dormant saving energy for next’s years crop, orchard, vines, flowers, lavender or whatever the case may have been. As annual as the crops may have been, the ever present ageless architecture was everywhere in it’s own bloom. The tile roofed structures were as usual gorgeous, old châteaux’s, villas, and farm houses with their varying architecturally styled pidgeoneirs off in the fields. There is an old world charm about driving by country sides where off in any direction the would be a small hill capped with a stone handmade town, they were all different in elements, but to me have the same sense of wonderment. I can’t help but fantasizing about what it must have been like to live in those towns during their heyday, what those streets must have been like. Now I understand all the cons such as disease, filth and lifespan, but imagine walking down a medieval town street, on a new cobblestone street, with freshly built cathedrals with their new stained glass and gilded ornamental details. There are such places that have been restored and are listed as Beau Plus Villages De France ( something like that title) but there are other villages that have McDonalds in the environs.
We continue westward and made great time, we thought that we might have to camp over at some little hotel on the way. But that thought vanished after four hours of driving, and we had gone more than half way. We drove through to the Dordogne, mainly because we wanted for Caleigh to have a chance to visit with some fellow classmates before just throwing her into the mix. She had communicated with five or so kids in her future French school, as luckily Isabel ( the proprietor of the house we were renting ) had put her in touch with a couple kids she knew. As we neared our soon to be town it started to rain, we thought of this as a good sign as it didn’t rain during our drive.