Monday, November 30, 2009
My latest travel article, on Provence, was published in the Sun-Herald (Sydney) on Sunday, link here. Last year, Cathie and I spent five months driving around Europe. We leased a Citroen in Paris and vaguely pointed her in the direction of Istanbul. One of our first stops was Provence, with all the tourist cliches you can name - lavender fields, sunflowers, vineyards... you get the idea. But what really impressed us was the number of small villages in France (in fact, throughout much of Europe) that still retain their culture, identity and social life. We stayed in a BB in Provence and within walking distance were two beautiful villages. Sablet had two boulangaries, a restaurant, a few cafes, a butcher, a market on thursday... even it's own book fair attracting authors from throughout France - all this in a village of 2,000 people! The photo is of Gordes, not Sablet. Yet another beautiful village built on a mountain top. To read about it, go to the article link above.
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
You've got to love Katoomba. Like the rest of NSW, we sweltered in the high thirties (Celsius) on sunday, even with our usual strong westerly blowing in. But on monday, while Sydney welcomes the change, recording temperatures between fifteen and twenty, up here the mercury plunges to eight overnight and doesn't go up much during the day. It's mid-morning in late November and the temperature outside is eleven degrees. I ring my son in Sydney and he's off to the beach. I'm in my study with the heater on. Something about living at one thousand metres, I guess. Outside my study window, the mist starts rolling up the hill. In a few minutes, I won't be able to see the back fence. Oh well, back to my next book, called black painted fingernails about a couple driving across the western plains... in thirty-five degree heat.
Now, how to get in the mood...