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Provence - Day Two

Provence - Day Two

Yesterday was, for the most part, cloudy, overcast and periodically threatening but today dawned hot, bright and sunny.

We had originally planned to spend the day in Aix but the weather was so charming that we decided on a drive to Cassis for lunch. My only previous knowledge of Cassis was as the critical ingredient in a Kir Royale but the town, as we discovered, is an extremely pleasant place to spend a sunny afternoon, on the water with massive headlands and cliffs directly behind the town.

 Farmhouse with poppies

Farmhouse with poppies

The drive is about 70k and for a good part of it toll highway. Nonetheless, there are many local roads and towns to work through and with the help of the GPS and our little gear-shift Peugeot, we created our own little Les Roux to Cassis Rally. Unknown to us before we set out was the fact that today was a market day in Cassis and with the beautiful weather the place was thronged.

Because the mountainous backdrop to the town rises almost directly from the sea and the town is perched on a narrow shelf between hills and water, it does mean that unless you are lucky enough to score a parking spot down in the Port area, just not possible today with the crowds unless one opened up right in front of your car, the only places to park required Sherpa skills to trek down from parking spots and back up to parking spots.

 Cassis Harbour with boats

Cassis Harbour with boats

Once arrived at the waterfront however, a beautiful miniature port filled with boats and surrounded by cafes on three sides. V stepped into an upscale-looking cooking store and asked the proprietor for a suggestion for the best place for lunch. She was categorical that there was only one good restaurant worth bothering with, the rest were too tourestique, and so there we went and spent a happy 2 hours sitting in the sun, drinking some of the local white wine while I had bouillabaisse and a grilled dorade and V had steamed razor clams with a pesto sauce and a grilled dorade. Drifted, a polite term for hiked, back up the hills to our car and so through the countryside back home.

 White asparagus a la Flamande - Dinner at home

White asparagus a la Flamande - Dinner at home

Were due to go out for dinner but too tired from the sun and the drive and picked up an emergency chicken at the Spar in Coucouron; imagine a 7-11 with, on offer, poulet de Bresse, a whole section of fresh farm chevre, and stunning vegetables; so dinner at home tonight will be no hardship.

Still struggling to find even one good reason why we shouldn't sell up and move here!

Provence - Days Three and Four

Provence - Days Three and Four

Provence - Day One

Provence - Day One