La Regalade at Carcès

26 Nov

This week we moved into La Regalade, the summer rental villa belonging to Jeremy and Jo.  In return for doing some gardening and maintenance, we will use it as our winter base.  Their rental season starts again in April 2013 so it fits very nicely with our plans.  I will put up some pictures of it in detail next week.

We left our surplus stuff with J&J when we went to Spain and Portugal.  The people renting La Regalade were leaving early on Monday morning so we spent Sunday night at J&J’s place at Les Fadons and came to the villa mid-morning on Monday.  It was pretty tidy but things like the cupboards all needed wiping out etc took most of the afternoon together with unpacking.  In the afternoon we headed to Le Thoronet to take some photos.  The autumn colours have got better since we have been away.  I would have thought it would be too late by now but in fact it is probably at it best.  Rain is forecast for next week so that will probably finish remaining leaves on the trees.

Stopped at Le Thoronet on Monday to get these autumn shots. The main street through the old village centre is on the left of the photo and the primary school is in the back.

The same small field of grapes in Le Thoronet.

Looking back toward the Winegrowers Cooperative.

This is the name of the main road through Le Thoronet. Named in honour of the day this area was liberated at the end of WWII.

This is the retail outlet for the Cooperative, a place we got to know well.

Countryside near Les Fadons in autumn colours.

This is one of the vineyards along the Chemin St. Victor leading to Les Fadons.

Somewhere I have photos from this location on Chemin St Victor from spring and summer also.

One of our challenges at the moment is the internet performance, as you may have gathered from my other posts.  Hopefully this will get sorted later tis week once J&J get back from their short holiday to the UK.  Working at less that dial-up speed is a killer these days.

I have been meaning to mention this for a few weeks but keep forgetting.  I have been surprised at how difficult it has become to take photos.  Because of our latitude here, around 43˚ North, the sun is now very low in the sky all day.  I am not accustomed to this coming from Auckland which is less then 37˚ South.  That 6˚ seems to make a lot of difference.  The sun always seems to be in your lens and the shadows are huge.  Just something to take into account when out shooting.

Tuesday was more cleaning at La Regalade with Leanne sorting the rest of the cupboards and sorting out where to put our things.  I did some gardening and in the afternoon we popped over to Les Fadons to see James & Lavinia.  The guys from the Le Thoronet council have finally turned up to cleared the fallen trees from the river after the flood in October 2011.  They have a large tractor and have made quite a mess of the grounds.

Activity started early on Thursday morning.  A crew from the council set about removing some tall, leaning pine trees from the roadside below us.  Amazing how they scale the trees and dismantle them.

Morning view from La Regalade. Most mornings there had been fog on the lake but once it clears the day has been sunny and warm for November.

We left La Regalade at 1015 to run some errands etc. Money machines, bank, Point P (hardware), Leclerc (supermarket), Tutu visit and use Internet to do blog, visit Sue for tea and scones.  As we drove along Chemin des Fadons towards Sue’s place, 200m before the little bridge, a huge sanglier ran from the river side, across the road and into the vineyard.  That is the first time we had seen one, previously we had just seen the damage. They don’t  normally move about during daylight hours.

I spent all day Friday clearing up dried fallen branches and rubbish and burning it.  The fire was only 2m across but it was still smouldering on Sunday afternoon.  On Friday evening we wandered across the road to Bob & Jane’s place and re-introduced ourselves – we had met back in June or July.  They are both retired from the British Police and live here full-time.  Very welcoming people.

On Saturday we decided to check out the Carcès market.   The market was fairly small. The main thing we wanted was cheese and there was none.

The market was a small one but this display caught my eye. Just wish the white van was not there.

We went to see the market at Carcès on Saturday morning. There seems to be a local characteristic to clad buildings in ceramic shingles as shown on the left of the Tourist Office. Another theme in Carcès are the large murals around the village.

A street view in Carcès.

This one is just begging for a creative caption. I have a couple of ideas up my sleeve but its your turn first. Just write your caption in the comments and I will update the post to reflect the best offering. The judge will not enter into correspondence after a decision has been made! 😉
GaryK: I’m giving that guy with the camera 2 minutes to stop photographing us or I’m going over to sort him out.

Then decided to go to St Croix La Manuelle to get wine but it was closed for lunch by the time we arrived. Took some photos nearby. Headed for the other St Croix which was open and spent €67.80 on 6 reds and 6 Muscat.

I am not sure what this marker is, it was located on the edge of the hamlet where the St. Croix vineyard is situated.

There were some beautiful scenes in the vineyards like this one.

Found the most beautiful spot to take autumn vineyard photos. Also trees laden with green olives. While we were there the old farmer arrived.

In this grove of olives there were some very tortured looking trees. They appeared pre-historic. This example was right on the edge of the road (just visible in the bottom left corner). There didn’t seem to be much fruit on them.

We had been milling around taking pictures of these heavily laden olive trees when the farmer arrived in his standard issue little white Renault wagon. His first priority was to sweep the gravel off the tarmac that had washed down from his driveway. I then started a very basic conversation with him and learned that people are always stopping here to take photos and that the olives would be picked tomorrow. They looked well due for it.

Another stunning view over the vineyards near St. Croix.

On our way home we drove around the opposite side of the lake from our place.

Back near La Regalade, but on the opposite side of the lake, these guys came by. We heard them long before we could see them because they were all talking at the tops of their voices! As far as we can work out the TDF will go through this road on 3rd July 2013. A pity we won’t be here – the villa is already booked.

This was what we had stopped for – to take a photo of La Regalade. The council cut some large pine trees along the road below us this week and our view is now much better.

An amusing thing happened this afternoon.  I was standing out by the pool at 1330 and I heard a commotion coming down the road which is about 50m away down the slope.  It sounded like 100 people.  When they finally came into sight it turned out to be just 6 middle-aged French people on a walk, engaging in 6 separate conversations contemporaneously. What a racket!  Fair go, they were all talking at the same time.

We have just returned home from a lovely meal together with Sue at James & Lavinia’s place.  Lavinia prepared enough food for an army and it was delicious.  I did my best and came home well sated and ready for sleep.

It was lightly raining on the way home.  We saw a huge sanglier on our road.  He didn’t seem to be in any hurry to get off the road – all in his own time.

Until next time…

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One Response to “La Regalade at Carcès”

  1. bikernz December 4, 2012 at 15:09 #

    Thank you to Gary K for the caption on the shot of the three men on a bench.

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