Oh my goodness – we are having so much fun with Kathy and Ron! We’ve spent time poking around the village, buying delicious cheeses, sausages, veggies, and fruits from the local vendors, and chatting with all the shop keepers. Ron is, perhaps, THE most gregarious person I’ve ever met – he’ll spend 5 minutes with someone and they’ll know each other’s life stories! He and Kathy have dusty French that is getting a workout (they both are more comfortable in either German or Spanish, between living in Germany and having spent so much time in Central and South America while on the boat), but they’re both linguists, and love working a language. All is much appreciated by those we meet!

The whole atmosphere here has changed since it’s warmed up – everyone is outside, the sidewalk cafés are busy, and people linger to chat with each other. Part of the atmosphere change for me is surely that we’re with Kathy and Ron, but it’s also a general shift, I think. Anyway, it’s welcome!

Because we have the time, we’ve spent lots of time sort of wandering and then stumbling upon a butcher, or bakery, or whatever, and then we’d buy from them, but couldn’t necessarily find them again (on purpose, that is!). And there are so many, it seemed that each time we’d buy from a different one! But now I’m starting to feel that I know my way around, and I’m starting to develop “relationships” with a couple of shopkeepers, and I know where to go to get to a specific one. It’s starting to feel like I really live here! 

When Kathy got here she posted something on her Facebook page about being in the south of France, and immediately got a text from a friend that she and her husband were not far away. They ended up coming for dinner, which Ron cooked! I had met these people, in fact, spent a night with them, a couple of years ago when Kathy and I went to England together. Kathy and Ron know them from the church choir in Germany that Kathy directed and they sang in. And they have a place in the south of France where they were on holiday. Kind of unbelievable!

Anyway, Ron whipped up a quasi Chinese stir fry, and we all had a very jolly time. Anna and Roy (I know, another Roy – can you believe it?) are very interesting and lots of fun, and there was lots of catching up to be done. What an amazing thing to have happen!

Yesterday, Roy made omelets for himself and Kathy, and we then all headed off to a little village called Le Castellet. It’s a medieval village, well restored, on top of a hill, surrounded by vinyards. I’d read that it has lots of galleries and little cafés where one can linger and take in a lovely day. And it was a lovely day!

Because Jeeves wanted to go by motorway, and we wanted to use secondary roads (it’s only about 15 minutes away), I used Google Maps to find the route to the parking (not really room for cars on the streets of a little walled-in Medieval village!). We don’t have a printer here, of course, but I copied the easy directions from the computer.

All went according to plan until we came to a roadblock in a small village we had to drive through. We had to turn right instead of left, and then had a lovely drive through  the wine country until we found Le Castellet. It was definitely not a problem – just unscheduled sightseeing. And the countryside is so beautiful, and the weather was so beautiful, it was actually a bonus!

Le Castellet is charming. There are lots of little shops and galleries, but what I loved about it was just meandering the narrow, winding streets, and looking out at the various views, depending on which side we were on. The day had become a bit breezy, with a chill in the air, so we weren’t inclined to install ourselves in one of the many little outdoor lunch places with amazing views, but we took note for later in our stay here. We did have a coffee on a little terrace, in the sun, and that was fine. We had a lovely few hours in the village, and we were early, so beat the crowds that were gathering as we left!

Le Castellet

 

One of the views

 

Ron, Kathy, and Leslie

 

Roy, Kathy, Leslie

 Back at home, we had a laughter-filled afternoon, several naps, a walk to the village to pick up some special bread the Kathy had ordered, and then a lovely rotisserie chicken dinner and salad. Capped it off with a movie from the landlady’s DVD collection, and we were at the end of a wonderful day!!

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