Wednesday, 6 February 2008
A February day in the Languedoc
Yesterday being Shrove Tuesday meant that we had a pancake feast to look forward to before we started to observe Lent.
In the morning his Lordship and I had enjoyed a gentle stroll through the square at Carcassonne in the warm sunshine. The cafe owners were busily putting out tables and chairs and it was hard not to imagine that spring was on its way. The chic patisseries drew you in with their piles of sugary oreillettes, a local delicacy.
In the afternoon some friends arrived and as the sun was so inviting on the terrace we sat and took it slowly. So slowly that we were still sitting there admiring the Pyrenees in their full glory as the sun went down. It was one of those long drawn out afternoons where the stunning view just begged to be savoured and work put aside. The mountains slowly turned a deep purple hue as the sun slowly sank but the unseasonal warmth is melting the snow, rather worryingly as the skiing season is soon to be upon us. His Lordship sat and explained the various peaks to our guests, the nearest ski slope Mont d' Holmes was clearly visible, sometimes on a clear night you can see the snow ploughs working on the runs. Looking simply magnificent yesterday in the clear light was the Mount Canigou, the highest mountain in the Eastern Pyrenees and where the Catalans gather for their summer solstice.
Before we knew what had happened the inky deep blue sky was twinkling with millions of stars and it was time to light a roaring log fire and turn our attention towards the serious business of the consumption of pancakes and squeezing of lemons.
Earlier this week we did go and view the house with the long tree lined drive on behalf of a friend, beautiful location, unspoilt typical country French house, only one small drawback. No view.
And whilst sometimes it is easy to feel disheartened by the seemingly never ending devotion and love an old house requires there is one aspect of Le Chateau of which I will never tire.
The view both inside and out !!