X is a cross

“X is a cross” is how my Geography teacher taught me to remember which axis was the horizontal or x axis on a graph but, since we have been in this part of France, we have been struck by the number of crosses on display. The Cathar cross features prominently in this region and of course Christian, mainly Catholic, crosses abound. Here are just some of the examples and, of course, now I can’t stop noticing them everywhere!

The lovely weather has encouraged us to get out and about. “Let’s do this local walk, it’s called le Cirque de Mourèze,” suggested Rich, “It’s quite easy and flat, I expect it will be a bit like the walk around the Peak in Hong Kong.” It wasn’t.

It was, however, absolutely stunning and, although I never want to do it again, I’m glad we did do it.

I have subsequently been scouring the maps for flatter walks and chanced upon the track of the old disused railway line on Google maps. Unfortunately, most of the line seems hopelessly overgrown but then we stumbled upon a section that has been made into a cycle and walking path in nearby Lézignan-la-Cèbe. It started at the old station house which still bears the name of the village. I hope I can find a few more sections that are as well-maintained.

We have been exploring the different local towns having had days out to Florensac, Marseillan, Nézignan-l’Évêque and Lézignan-la-Cèbe. Can you spot another mural like the ones in Montpellier and Béziers in one of the shots we took?

Of course I have been adding to my collection of photos of local mairies or Town Halls. Here are Marseillan, Nézignan-l’Évêque and Adissan (with yet another lovely mural):

Thanks to the power of the internet I managed to find us a Pub Quiz in Pézenas (called Pézenas Pub Quiz so I guess it wasn’t that hard to find)! It’s on every other Thursday from September to June so we rocked up on Thursday April 12th and prepared to do battle in a Billy-No-Mates team of 2. The organiser took pity on us and put us together with 2 other newbies who happened to be French. The quiz is totally bi-lingual so we had no problems between us understanding the questions and called ourselves the Franglais team. We didn’t come last but we certainly didn’t come first either. It was a fun night and the next fortnight we had managed to wangle ourselves onto an established team. Still no prizes but another great night out was had by all (and we could walk home afterwards). Bonus! We’re missing our Spider’s Web team but now we’re with the No Brainers for the next couple of quizzes before it shuts down for the Summer.

 

Another fun thing we did this week was a 4-course vineyard lunch. It was preceded by a lovely walk around the vineyard looking at peacocks, Roman wells, local flora and ancient coral then we sat down al fresco for a delicious lunch with a different wine matched to each course. We met some very interesting people and enjoyed an amazing environment with delicious food and drink, all for 30 Euros a head. Yes, we did buy some wine to take away with us, well it would have been rude not to!

I had to share this pretty picture of apple blossom from the garden because now it’s all disappeared.

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And finally, we headed down to the weekly market last Saturday and couldn’t quite believe our eyes when every other person seemed to be wearing a traditional striped top… the atmosphere was buzzing and we later learnt that it was part of the annual Spring Festival or Printival which commemorates the local celebrity Boby Lapointe who was born and died in Pézenas. I put the photo onto Instagram as a caption competition. I wonder if you guys can come up with some good captions for what the lady (who looks remarkably like Jennie Martin) is saying to the little boy…

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À bientôt, bisous.

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