France, we meet again…

It had been 4 months since our last French workaway left a very sour taste in our mouths.  We were hopeful of a better experience this time as we headed to another mountainous location; the Midi Pyrénées.

On our way, the picturesque train ride from Rapallo, through both the Italian and French Riviera, saw us stopping in Nice overnight.  It was just the place to get our beach fix after the torrential rain in Rapallo.  We made the most of it, having both dinner and breakfast on the beach watching the glorious sunset and sunrise over the water.

L1004389 L1004393

IMG_2777

IMG_2768
We seem to spend a lot of our time in new cities trying their brews (could you tell from Steve’s last post?)

For this workaway we were staying with another English family; Becky, Matt, Ed & Henri.  There always seem to be interesting events happening when we arrive at new work stays.  The annual organic market was happening in the nearby town of St Girons so we checked it out with Becky & the boys.

The human powered carousel was popular.

IMG_2820

IMG_2797 IMG_2799

There was an area with FREE circus activities for kids (and big kids) to have a go.

IMG_2800 IMG_2807 IMG_2813

We were incredibly surprised to run into Yohana who was our couchsurfing host in Avignon earlier this year.  Her family had a couple of stalls at the market and we were able to meet her new nephew.

IMG_2815

Meet the furry, hairy and feathery members of the family (unfortunately we neglected to take photos of the feline members, Molly & Bobby).

Heidi (left) & Dusty (right)

L1004587

Pinky & Perky

L1004529 L1004567

The Brood

L1004515

We loved walking the dogs every day and seeing the gorgeous fields and forests filled with flora and fauna.

IMG_2828 IMG_2822

L1004433 L1004449

L1004435

It was chestnut season, so we collected heaps only to leave them unused.  We did however make use of the vegetables from our hosts’ garden; only taking a few steps outside to find all the ingredients for this frittata.

L1004469 L1004432

Of course we did a bit of work too. Digging up potatoes and carrots, plaiting onions (not as easy as you’d expect), sanding, painting, gardening and looking after the animals.

Meet the animals and see us feeding the chickens and pigs on this video.

L1004418L1004538

L1004547 L1004407

L1004410 L1004522

This is Contessa, the donkey who lived next door.

L1004594 L1004597

Perky really liked Steve and sometimes chased him around the field.

L1004573 L1004575 L1004576

L1004558

Some of the gorgeous scenery could only be reached by car, so Becky was kind enough to take us up the mountains for a look.

L1004488 L1004489

L1004492

L1004502

IMG_2844
Steve’s favourite thing to do in France – eat croissants.

After we left the lovely town of Argein, we spent a night in Toulouse before continuing on to Bordeaux.

Our night in Toulouse happened to be the night of Halloween.  We spent the day wandering around, checking out people’s costumes and ended up at an English pub for dinner.

IMG_2847 IMG_2864

The main train stations in each French city have a piano which are open for anyone to play.  We didn’t hear much of them in our first few months here, but we were treated to some high quality music by several pianists in Toulouse, as well as some of the other southern stations we’ve been through.

IMG_2877

When we arrived in Bordeaux we saw protesters for the first time in France.  Then when we were leaving we were affected by train strikes for the first time (unrelated to the protesters).  Fortunately we had advanced warning and it didn’t affect our plans too much.

L1004609

Aside from the protest, there were heaps of people out and about in Bordeaux, enjoying the fair that was in town and the great weather on the public holiday.

L1004618 L1004621

L1004626 L1004627

L1004640

We checked out a few markets on the weekend and enjoyed the oysters and wine for which they’re renowned (even if it was a little early in the morning).

L1004636 L1004635

L1004641

Now we’re lucky enough to be back in Crozon sur Vauvre staying with Tim & Juliet.  If you haven’t already, make sure you take a look at what we got up to last time we were here.

Siobhan

Advertisements

9 thoughts on “France, we meet again…

  1. Once again a great read and beautiful photos. I particularly enjoyed the photos in the mountains where Becky took you.

    I liked the video and have told Celia about it so that she’ll show it to Luke.

  2. It’s never too early for wine and oysters. Gabrielle and Lucy loved the video. They watched it twice and asked lots of questions. Andrew couldn’t quite stay the course. He is a young lad with a short attention span!
    I see shades of The Good Life in you and Steve. How will you settle back into the Brisbane metropolis?

  3. Pingback: The Animalist | Musings of the Pengo Pair

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s