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  • Day514

    We had done a full circuit of Belgium and were back near the farm where we'd spent 10 days volunteering with WWOOF. Having got on so well with Diderik, our host, we'd arranged to drop in for a quick visit. It was great to be back and see Diderik and the animals again, especially Lappa the dog who seemed very excited to see us and Poppy. We toured the farm and it was really intersting to see how much had changed. Although we see different things almost every day on this trip, we rarely see how the same place changes over time. Outside, the trees were mostly bare now, the pond was almost clear of duck weed, two little nanny goats had joined the three in the field, the meat chickens were gone and the sheep had taken over their field and shed. In the greenhouse the baby rabbits who were only a few days old when we arrived had grown to the size of dwarf rabbits, but their old father had died. We said hello to Ever the pig and Vicky got to feed her before we headed inside for a cuppa. Diderik had got a compost toilet installed to replace the downstairs flushing toilet and it was really intersting to see how well that was working out. It was a simple setup with a bucket underneath the rim that was gradually filled with waste and homemade leaf mulch. The bucket would then be removed and the contents left to compost, providing nutrients for the soil.

    Too soon it was time to say goodbye, both to Diderik and to Belgium. As we approached the French border there were a series of shops selling tobacco and chocolates and soon after crossing in to France, the products on sale changed to wines and champagnes.

    Oye-Plage was a free car park aire just 20km from Calais ferry terminal. Calais itself has a paying aire but our ferry was scheduled for 12:35pm the following day leaving us plenty of time to get there, so we'd chosen this quiet spot where we were the only van in sight.

    We tried to keep busy and focus on tasks all afternoon and evening because we were in a state of nervous excitement, thoughts constantly buzzing around our heads.
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  • Day3

    Minden fényezés nélkül ;) sikerült úgy foglalnom szállást, h azon túl h szuper, a vasárnapi szabadteri Bastille market közvetlen közelében található. Mondanom sem kell, hogy első utunk oda vezetett.
    És nagyon jól is tettük: elsősorban food piacról van szo, ahol tényleg minden de minden megtalálható, csorgattuk is a nyálunkat és én irigyeltem a francia haziasszonyokat, akiknek minden vasárnap ilyen lehetoseguk van feltölteni az eleskamrat.
    Ja és persze emlegettük anyut és Martit, hogy itt bizony lubickolnanak. :)
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  • Day3

    Mivel is fejezhetnenk be a hétvégét, mint egy jó kis palacsintaval a Bastille-nal.
    Illetve kettővel, mert feleztunk: lecsúszott egy sós (Gallette- sonka, gomba, hagymalekvar, tukortojas) és egy édes (sós karamellás, almás, tejszinhabos) kaloriabomba is, mindkettő zseniális!

  • Day3

    A habzsidőzsis piac után irány a Notre Dame- Parizs szimbóluma, legismertebb gótikus székesegyháza, amit az 1100-as években kezdtek el építeni, majd a francia forradalom alatt szinte teljesen elpusztult, de sikerült ujjaepiteni. Érdekes, hogy korábban ugyanitt pogany szertartásokat rendeztek. Es nem tudom, tudtatok-e, hogy a legnagyobb harangot, amit csak unnepnapokon kongatnak, Emanuelnek hivjak.:)
    A templom maga nagyon szép, nappal is, nem úgy mint az Eiffel torony, amiről megallapitjuk, hogy hatarozottan jót tesz neki az éjszakai kivilagitas. :)))
    Szóval bemegyünk a Notre Dameba, ahol éppen miset tartanak, nagyon szép békés az egész, a rozsaablakok pedig lélegzetelállítóak.
    És a Notre Dame előtt végre hozzájutok pár isteni macoronhoz- teljes a boldogság! :)
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  • Day3

    D’Orsay után elsetaltunk meg a Louvre uvegpiramisahoz és én megint elcsodálkoztam rajta, h mekkora ez a múzeum! Hatalmas!
    Aztán megnéztük meg egyszer a Notre Dame-ot esti fényekben, és ahogy sétáltunk a Cité fele, a híd, amin átsétáltunk kiderült, hogy a szerelmesek hídja lehet, mert tele volt lakattal. Meg is jelent rögtön a lakatarus, of course, de szegénynek nem volt szerencseje, mert pont előtte találtunk egy már felrakott lakatot MD felirattal- az már jó lesz nekunk. :))Read more

  • Day3

    Notre Dame után megcsináltuk a hop on hop off 3.körútjat, ami a Szajna déli partján ment. A végére tokre atfaztunk, úgyhogy úgy döntöttünk, most benti progi jöhet csak. Meg is éheztünk, uh először beultunk egy helyre ahol én egyszerre dontottem magamba a forró francia hagymalevest (isteni volt), a meleg teat és a pohár vorosbort- a három együtt hatott és sikerült atmelegedni.
    A megálló után a D’Orsay-ra esett a választásunk: impresszionistakbol sosem elég. :) Monet, Cezasanne, Renoir, Manet, Sissley, Pisarro, Tuluse Loutrec...mind zseniális! A végén meg befigyelt egy kis Van Gogh is. Tetszik ebben a múzeumban, hogy nem egyik teremből nyílik a másik ami végeláthatatlanna teszi az egészet, hanem a foldszinten kis “szobak” vannak- tehát tulajdonkeppen akar szelektálni is lehet, ha az ember nem akarja/ nincs ideje az egészet végignézni. Pompidou és Louvre majd legközelebb...
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  • Day73

    The nearest large town is Beziers and to day we visited it to buy a replacement generator and to have a quick look around. Unfortunately, being the winter season, nothing was open on a Monday except the UNESCO World Heritage Ecluse de Fonserannes.... and what I was told is ...

    When our Harry Curtmantle and Aliénor got hitched in 1152 it was not just the merger of Plantagenent assets with Aquitaine but also the start of Britains consumption of Bordeaux wine. This powerful thirst strained the meager production of local plonk and so the good citizens outsourced to Languedoc but retaining naming rights: a trade which continues to this day.

    Unfortunately, there was a mountain range between the Med and the Atlantic so the only way to transport goods North was by jolting along in a rattley cart. In fact so bumpy was it that places such as Dijon made a reputation for themselves by turning the soured Languedoc wine into mustard.

    In order to avoid the dreaded Barbary pirates and the corrugated tracks the Southerners had dreamt of a canal "entre deux mer" for a few hundred years without ever solving the problem of water supply to the highest points of the canal. Augustus, Nero, Charlemagne, François I, Charles IX and Henry IV all dreamed of it: François I brought Leonardo da Vinci over in 1516 to survey part of a route.

    As always, a project of such scope involves hefty contributions from the tax man. In this case one taxman, (the collector of salt revenues, Pierre-Paul Riquet,) took a personal interest and eventually solved the problem. He got the backing of Louise XIV and devoted the rest of his life to digging.
    One of his achievements was to build the 9 lock lift at Fonserannes, each in the shape of a bottle, which have worked well to this day. The last photo of the modern, efficient strramlined version has never worked at all and has been abandoned.

    BTW something else I heard: each year large quantities of Sauvignon Blanc are harvested in the early hours of the mornings and driven over to Reims by nightfall. Not saying anything of course, Mums the word. Honi soit qui mal y pense.
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  • Day73

    In linking Toulouse and Beziers as the start and end point of his canal, maybe PPR was reminding us of their shared 13thC catastrophe when Rome was scandalised by Catharism, with such dangerous doctrines as not needing the intervention of priests to gain salvation and not giving tons of money to Rome, which was attracting too many converts in in Southern France. Pope Innocent III sent preachers to convert the Cathars, but called a crusade after his legate, Pierre of Castelnau, was killed in January 1208.

    A Crusading army was formed in Lyon and arrived in Beziers in 1209, motivated more by spiritual umbrage than by Innocent’s declaration that they would be entitled to keep any land seized from heretics. Under the command of another papal legate, Arnaud Amalric, Abbot of Cîteaux the army arrived at Béziers and called for the surrender of the Cathars and local Catholics. Some Catholics to their credit refusing to betray the few hundred Cathars in their midst to the glories of martyrdom, and the heretics took sanctuary in the Holy Catholic Church of St Madeleine. (Only restored last year.) So when the walls fell, it was mostly orthodox Catholics killing orthodox Catholics. Well, what’s a crusading army with other cities to sack supposed to do?

    "When they discovered, from the admissions of some of them, that there were Catholics mingled with the heretics they said to the abbot “Sir, what shall we do, for we cannot distinguish between the faithful and the heretics.” The abbot, like the others, was afraid that many, in fear of death, would pretend to be Catholics, and after their departure, would return to their heresy, and is said to have replied “Kill them all for the Lord knoweth them that are His” (2 Tim. ii. 19) and so countless number in that town were slain." (Caesar of Heisterbach)

    "And they killed everyone who fled into the church; no cross or altar or crucifix could save them. And these raving beggarly lads, they killed the clergy too, and the women and children. I doubt if one person came out alive … such a slaughter has not been known or consented to, I think, since the time of the Saracens." (William of Tudela, cited in Cathar Castles)

    Amarlic and Milo, a fellow legate, in a letter to the Pope, claim that the crusaders "put to the sword almost 20,000 people.

    Simon de Montfort, a prominent French nobleman, was then appointed leader of the Crusader army and was granted control of the area encompassing Carcassonne, Albi, and Béziers. After the fall of Carcassonne, other towns surrendered without a fight. Albi, Castelnaudary, Castres, Fanjeaux, Limoux, Lombers and Montréal all fell quickly.
    Although his first siege of Toulouse in 1211 was unsuccessful, he defeated the city's army two years later and then appointed himself as count before he himself died at the Siege of Toulouse in 1218. Many more thousands perished.

    Following all these disturbances, the University of Toulouse was established by the 1229 Treaty of Paris. Their basic courses in theology and Aristotelian philosophy were beefed up to combat heresy. The Dominican monastic order was founded, with its home in the Couvent des Jacobins de Toulouse. A nearly four-century holy inquisition began, centred in the city.

    Not a lot of people know this.
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  • Day77

    Without a constant supply of electricity, the refrigerator cannot be used but this is less of a problem than I thought. There is a mini-Carrefour 5 minutes into Cessenon for perishable items and the three other medium sized ones within a 30 minute drive. Milk of course is mainly UHT in France to ensure that none of the cows' goodness survives and the old butter dish works remarkably well. The one in the photo came from Brittany.

    Progress has been made on the planning front. We have set up a project area with filing cabinets and a table near the fireplace. Now we have to collect all the bits of paper from around the house and put them into folders. I have made a list of 250 things to finish or fix so that the house can be completed. Now F can see how to best use future Workaways next year. I've drawn up plans for a front porch and also for a back deck just in case the other work gets finished!
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  • Day5

    Arrived at Beilari Alburgue as the communal dinner was started. Introductions and toasts with a convivial think he does this each evening with a new group. Lovely conversations though thoughts of a shower and bed were in intruding. The other 19 or so pilgrims were leaving this morning. I also vacated the premises with access again at midday. I decided to don the trusty hat to cover seriously stringy hair and shower later. water at all

    Will quote from the letter sent to my husband. "Everyone from the Alburgue headed off this morning for Orrison or Roncesvalles. I also vacated at 8am with a code to come in the backdoor at 12. The door for tonight's pilgrims opened at 2pm .My plan was to wash the clothes I had worn since leaving home and myself.  Couldn't keep my hair covered permanently with a cap. Great excitement to see a whole boutique of abandoned toiletries in the shower room. The building was in darkness clearly the hosts rest up.  They are amazing managing a fabulous communal dinner welvone each night so must need it.  Anyway I stripped off ...bonus having no other pilgrims...pushed the shower and got a spray that stopped.  Went into the other shower and pushed as directed...nothing.  Starkers  still ...decided to have a sponge bath at the basin and wash my hair upstairs so dressed again...appreciated the talcumn powder.  Upstairs? No water at all.  Downstairs again and got a cup or so from what was in the pipes so pleased I hadn't used shampoo. Last night our hosts said no showers between 10:30 pm and 6:30 am.  All puzzling...maybe they are turned on and off.  Maybe washing and sleep are both being overrated!!"

    So....this grubby pilgrim bought some walking poles and went exploring the route I will take real time tomorrow. Steep..steep...steep!! BREATHE....

    Moving right along... had a magnificent cappuccino, met a lovely young Australia girl....lots of sharing...people that may or may not cross my path again.

    Now some internet connection and found some water for showering. I'm nice to be near however there is no one near....a little lonely...there are two empty beds alongside me with welcoming names on them. My bedmates...strangers .. this time we are likely to all be walking tomorrow

    Seven - thirty tonight the communal welcome more sleep and my mountain will welcome me.... Spain in two sleeps.... Espanol...

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You might also know this place by the following names:

Republic of France, Frankreich, France, Frankryk, Frɛnkyeman, ፈረንሳይ, Franzia, Francland, فرنسا, ܦܪܢܣܐ, ফ্ৰান্স, Francia, Fransa, Францыя, Франция, Faransi, ফ্রান্স, ཕ་རཱན་སི།, Frañs, Francuska, França, Huák-guók, Pransiya, Francie, Francëjô, Франци, Ffrainc, Frankrig, ފަރަންސޭސިވިލާތް, ཕརཱནསི, Frans nutome, Γαλλία, Francujo, Prantsusmaa, Frantzia, فرانسه, Farayse, Ranska, Frakland, An Fhrainc, An Fhraing, ફ્રાંસ, Yn Rank, Faransa, צרפת, फ़्रांस, Francoska, Frans, Franciaország, Ֆրանսիա, Prancis, ꃔꇩ, Frakkland, フランス共和国, fasygu'e, საფრანგეთი, Ubaranja, Frankrigi, បារាំង, ಫ್ರಾನ್ಸ್, 프랑스, फ्रांस, Frankrish, فەڕەنسا, Pow Frenk, Francogallia, Fransia, Frankräich, Bufalansa, Frankriek, Francja, Falánsɛ, ຝລັ່ງ, Prancūzija, Nfalanse, Francija, Frantsa, Франција, ഫ്രാന്‍സ്, Франц, फ्रान्स, Perancis, Franza, ပြင်သစ်, Frankrike, Furansi, Frankrijk, ଫ୍ରାନ୍ସ, Fransya, Frantscha, Franchiya, Ubufaransa, Franța, Frantza, Fraunce, Frankriika, Farânzi, ප්‍රංශය, Francúzsko, Faransiis, Franca, Француска, Ufaransa, பிரான்ஸ், ఫ్రాన్స్‌, Фаронса, ประเทศฝรั่งเศส, Pransya, Falanisē, Pranis, Farāni, فرانسىيە, Франція, فرانس, Franzsa, Pháp, Vrankriek, Fransän, Orílẹ́ède Faranse, 法国, i-France

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