Downward Dog and downright gorgeous

During our strolls around the village and our visits to la Mairie, we chanced upon signs for a local yoga class. I took down the details, emailed the organisers and pitched up on Wednesday morning with my yoga mat and an open mind. NB: Justine, you’ll be pleased to know there was actually no Downward Dog included in the class! In fact it was a very different yoga class to what I’m used to. The ‘animatrice’, Danielle, was very knowledgeable about anatomy and my French vocab of body parts certainly improved. I now know where my ‘nuque’, ‘aine’ and ‘chevilles’ are!*

The emphasis was on correct alignment and using the body’s natural bone structure to aid with posture and weight bearing. With a few tweaks to my posture, Danielle had me crouching in the Chair Pose (one of my least favourites) for much longer than I have ever held it before! In fact an actual chair was used for much of the class and the movements concentrated on slow and careful manipulation of different joints. The end of the class culminated in a lovely massage with a tennis ball between my neck and the wall at the back of the hall. I came out feeling as if I’d learnt a lot of new vocabulary and experienced a different kind of yoga.

On Monday we ventured out to a local landmark about 40 minutes away called Château de la Roche Courbon. It was absolutely stunning as Rich’s photos will attest:


As you can see, we had the place pretty much to ourselves as it was a sunny and showery day on a Monday in September!


The flowers were in bloom and the lawns were immaculate. Just look at the topiary on the shrubs and trees!


We signed up for a tour of the main house (in French) and were pleasantly surprised that we managed to understand so much of it.


There were some really cool old games in the basement that kept us busy trying to outdo each other on Ye Olde Worlde Air Hockey (think wooden puck and highly polished surface) and Roll the Ball into the Hole in the Wooden Surface (I’m sure it was called something more catchy).

We wandered down to the prehistoric caves that have been mocked up to look like Neanderthal encampments. It was very peaceful to walk by the river and listen to the birds.


The weather has started to cool down and the leaves are gradually changing colour. I have been collecting handfuls of conkers from the garden and I tried to make an arty display of them in the kitchen. I’ll leave you with this arty shot by Rich from our day trip:

IMG-20170911-WA0006À bientôt, bisous.

*Nuque = nape of the neck

*Aine = groin

*Chevilles = ankles

14 thoughts on “Downward Dog and downright gorgeous

    • Dear Joanne,
      Thanks so much for your kind comment. Do I have you to thank for the gorgeous Temple Spa products dotted around? The hand soap and lotion are my favourites.
      Best regards,


  1. What a beautiful chateau and lovely photos. Isn’t it amazing that there are so many places like this around and mostly off the tourist trail.
    I too collected some conkers yesterday. Maybe we shpuld enter the French Conker Championships next month, which is held in a village not far from me.


  2. Loving your blog! Sounds like you’re both having a ball. I’ve collected a few conkers to ward off the spiders seeking refuge in number 28!!
    Well done on the yoga and fantastic photos Rich. Can’t wait for the next update xx


    • I’ve only just heard about the conker/spider thing but we’ve had a couple of big spiders here so I’m glad I’ve collected some conkers, now to distribute them around the château!


  3. So glad you have found a teacher who focuses on alignment. Trigger point therapy is really rewarding too if you do it correctly and often.👍🏼
    Hey maybe the downdogs will start popping up gradually 😁just when you least expect it.
    Can you ask if the teacher is focusing on yoga therapy?
    Wonderful that things are working out so well for you both!😊😊


    • Dear Utpala,
      Thanks for stopping by on the blog. I miss our regular Saturday morning yoga sessions but I’m trying to remember everything you taught me and do a little by myself.
      Take care,


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