This scene, a shot taken in Roussillon, won out. The colors, the mural and these two little girls -- I think I can live with them on my wall for quite awhile.
So, with Roussillon on my mind, I wanted to take you there, too.
Roussillon is one of those places that you really need a car to visit. It's a hilltop town in the Little Luberon mountain region in Provence. Just an hour's drive from Avignon, it's a place to put on your "Let's Visit" list.
Yes, it's very touristy. But you'll love being a tourist there.
Walking the winding streets.
Following the maze of cobblestones.
Drinking in the colors. Checking out the doors.
Taking in the vistas and views.
Craning your neck over rooftops!
Roussillon's claim to fame is that during the turn of the century, it was basically the world's supplier for ochre used in paint! Today the remaining ochre deposits are preserved and conserved as part of their history, making Roussillon itself a museum of sorts.
Roussillon is so artsy, even the trash cans are pretty.
This restaurant, La Treille, gets fairly good reviews on Trip Advisor, but several folks appraise it as being expensive. We didn't eat there. I was interested in the huge vine out front which I thought was wisteria. However, the small gray sign hanging on it explains that it is a grape vine and, forgive my memory lapse, but I believe the sign says it was planted there more than 160 years ago!
We didn't do anything in particular in Roussillon.We watched a guy makes crepes.
We visited a souvenir shop with olive oils and admired displays in the art galleries.
We engaged in a photo shooting war.
And we went to the cemetery.
The Hubby was quite uncomfortable with me taking photos in a cemetery and he let me know that more than once. And more than once, I ignored him:) Here I was living the fulfillment of a 10-year-dream. I thought the cemetery was the perfect place to contemplate and appreciate my blessings and put everything in perspective. Besides, I learned something. The French do death better.
Yes, there were some real flowers and some plastic ones, but for the most part, the French decorate their graves with gorgeous pottery pieces and granite plaques customized with messages from loved ones. Some even had photos of the deceased protected under plexiglass. Walking around the graves, it wasn't just reading names and dates of birth and death. I felt like I really got a look into someone's live, a real person who would never be forgotten.
This gravesite was most intriguing. No crosses, granite plaques or ceramic tokens. Just this headstone with a very Egyptian-looking jackal motif.
While searching online for any information about Monsieur Jacquest Talbotier, I learned about Roussillon's most famous resident. You see, the only reference I could find to Mr. Talboiter is a citation as the author of "L'Ocre et Roussillon," a book listed in the bibliography of another book about Samuel Beckett. Yes, the famous author/playwright (Waiting for Godot) lived in Roussillon for two years.
Beckett joined the French Resistance after the 1940 occupation by Germany, in which he worked as a courier. On several occasions over the next two years he was nearly caught by the Gestapo. In August 1942, his unit was betrayed and he and Suzanne fled south on foot to the safety of the small village of Roussillon, in the Vaucluse département in Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur. There he continued to assist the Resistance by storing armaments in the back yard of his home. During the two years that Beckett stayed in Roussillon he indirectly helped the Maquis sabotage the German army in the Vaucluse mountains, though he rarely spoke about his wartime work in later life.
Another advantage to trekking out to the cemetery: it has unforgettable views of the village! This photo may give you the impression that the cemetery is miles away from the town, but it's not. It's easy to do by foot. Go past the gelato stand and the fella making crepes. Check out the vista turnout and the sun dial. Follow the signs toward the Ochre Mining Museum and just keep going up the road.
The view will take your breath away!
Mes amies, this week I absolutely have to get the rest of my "junque" transported to the antique mall space I previously blogged about. I've already taken a couple of car loads, but I've got more, not to mention thousands of post cards to price:) So this is likely the only blog post I'll do this week. HOWEVER, please stop by anyway because I'll be sharing some fun pics via Facebook at the top of my blog. You don't have to have a Facebook account to be able to see the pics, click on em and vicariously travel. These are what I call 'stand alone' photos. Just interesting tidbits and pretties -- everything from Goliath's foot to picnicking with sheep.