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24 May 2010

Vide-Grenier and Accidental Tourism

Um..something funky at the vide-grenier

We forgot to take pictures at the vide-grenier. Well, it's exactly like any flea market in the States..full of junk. With a few treasures far and few between. Ien calls them the bbt (bits of broken toys). I managed to find sheets though for our next place..all six for 20 E, saving us a total of 100E to rent them from the guy in Banyuls. Ruby found some white Converse for 5E...not bad. And Moss found..yes..Luke Skywalker. This was a pretty fast trip because there really was a lot of junk. However, if one were wanting to fit out a gite or something, it'd be a great place to go.

Hint*: bring your own toilet paper into toilettes publiques. There ain't any.

The French love of Symmetry

We found ourselves near Souillac (we were in Cazoules if anyone is looking at maps), so we decided to check it out. We then realized we were very close to Rocamadour, which is just a fabulous cream puff of fantasy..a fortified city build more vertically than any of the others we've seen in a gorge. We took off and ended up in an unbelievable jam of tourists and shops..not really knowing where this place was. Armed with some chocolate eclairs and custard pies, we dropped by a little grocery to add the usual salami, cheese and bread and had a picnic right in the middle of the tourists. We sat on a piece of grass near an intersection and drew bemused stares from passing cars. Really it looked like a small parc, but you got the feeling it would be like seeing a family picnicking on a median in the middle of a boulevard.

Rocamadour From the Tourist Trap

After a bit of wandering, we stumbled to the edge of a cliff, as we are wont to do, and below lay our beautiful city. Really, it looks like Minas Tirith or something. Back to the car so we could race down the windy one-car wide switchbacks to the bottom of the gorge. Car after car after tour bus was ahead of us, then straight on the main gate..pedestrians only.

From One Side....

So we decided, given the complement of the car, time of day and availability of 15 minute rations (and the throngs of people), to go on. However, we found a field right around the corner which afforded a tremendous view of the city from below.

...And the Other

On we drove with the oft repeated (four different voices) "Are we going home now?" to Gourdon, which is on the way home, actually. It is positively charming and everything was positively closed because it was...just before 2pm.

The look of Stinging Nettles

We will go back tomorrow I think. What we didn't realize until later was that Gourdon, too, is perched, teetering on the edge of this same deep gorge. Jason kept offering to pull over to let me take a picture and we'd all scream, "No!!!!!!!!!!!"

We got home and the day was very hot. So we swam or lay in the shade, dribbling around. Finally, we got into the kitchen because we were to have a barbeque with Ian and Ien and their friend Julia. Rubes and I managed to wrestle the famous Julia Child chocolate cake from the dishes we had. I actually beat egg whites and cream into stiff peaks with my whisk. This, for me, is very satisfying and I didn't break my arm like I thought. It must be France, I thought. The French eggs, the French cream, the French air. Anyway......

Hen, Me, Ien, Ian, J., Rubes, Moss (Julia behind camera)

Things started off with some fabulous foie gras brought by our hosts. I cannot rember the French word for one, but basically it means scrapings, or bits. This could be scary, but it was so delicious and tasted like pan scrapings after you cook chicken or sausage. We had a great dinner (chicken kabobs and both duck and chorizo sausages) with lots and lots of conversations and wine and great food. Good company.

Hello Kabob!

Julia leads a great sort of bohemian life. She's from Maryland but has lived in England for the last 40 years. A textile artist, she just arrived from a Greek island where she rented a space for a month. Lucky. She was very interested in Ruby's art, especially photography, and promised to put her in touch with her friend, Max Adelman. (look him up).

Julia's Arm

We were up late so, sorry, I was on vacation.


  1. What an incredible place. How marvelous you are getting to experience all these splendid places. Sending you love and gratitude for sharing with us.

    Loved talking to Mossy and Cormac today. Cormac asked if I was "making food." I promised to make cookies for him when he gets back.

  2. Mmmm I have had stinging nettles on my own European adv. and since I was being read to, thought one of kids had succumbed. Glad to hear it was a stinging nettle like look rather than the actual thing! As always sounds like loads of fun, reminiscent of my own childhood family vacations--espec. the one in eu. I'd like to think we were more gung ho but I think we were just too fearful to complain! Lol. While I miss it when "our" blog is late I am so greatful you do it at all; I wait patiently (ahem) asking T every hour..."is our blog up yet? Where is she? Doesn't she know we count on her?" and other such nonsence. Forgive me and thanks loads.