Monday, May 14, 2012

Carcassonne to Bordeaux

A very long day's drive today so this will be short post.  We left our chambre d'hote (b and b) this morning and I have to say, it was an absolutely delightful stay.  If you ever have a chance to travel to Carcassonne I would highly recommend this as a place to stay.  (I've provided a link below.)
I have also included a couple of pictures taken after (not before, sorry) we had finished our breakfast.  Our hostess is a fabulous gourmet cook and everything was homemade, from the bread (best in France so far!!!) to the confitures (jams) to the yoghurt.  Just the best!!  Francoise, our hostess, also sells some of her homemade products, so I purchased a quince and pear jam as well as a delicious confiture made from whole cherries and mint, all from their own property.  So delicious.  The yoghurt in France is  delicious and the plain yoghurt is going to be amazing with the jam in it!!!  Because I'm sure it won't travel well in my suitcase on the plane, don't you know, so I'll have to make sure it's all gone before I leave for home. Aren't I such a careful traveler???!!!  

 This is the view from inside the little cabane where breakfast is served, the first picture is inside the cabane itself and the second is looking out into the garden beyond.  (Oh dear, I hope Francoise won't mind that I've posted a picture with the sheets on the line.  I was just so impressed with how well the space outside was used...and imagine how delightfully fresh the line-dried sheets will be!!) They even have chickens in the little shed on the far right.  So delightful.  I really would recommend it if you ever get over this way.
 We have seen so many poppies, growing wild at the side of the road and sometimes across whole fields.  Beautiful.
 These shots (above and below) are an example of some of the countryside we went through today.  A lot of the fields seem to be planted in what looked like squash, just showing a couple of leaves.  Of course, it could have been melons, or anything else that starts life in that form.  But whatever they were, it is spring here, and the fields were either newly planted with seedlings showing through or are being readied to plant.  Lovely.
We also went through some pretty unattractive areas of pine forests that looked half dead (in my opinion only, of course, and I confess I love deciduous trees).  And then other areas that had been reforested, but planted in a grid pattern that didn't look very organic at all.  I'm not sure exactly what I expected, but they did look quite different from our forests at home, even after re-forestation.
We also stopped at a restaurant just north of Castelnaudary (another suggestion from our host and hostess!) for a lunchtime meal of cassoulet (a bean and sausage and goose dish, very rich, omigosh, and totally delicious) and then we made our way up to Rions (near Bordeaux) where we are settling in for two nights.  I'm not sure if we are going to do much more tomorrow other than just hang about and relax.  We'll see.  And I'll let you know!!
Hmmmm.  Not such short post after all.  Sigh!
Back soon.

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