Saturday, September 5, 2009

Arles

This morning Anna suggested that we take a weekend car trip heading west to the Languedoc region, where we would spend a day in Collioure, visiting Saint-Remy-de-Provence, Les Baux, and Arles on our way. We stayed two nights at a friend's lovely home in Pezenas, an entire day in Collioure, and took a leisurely drive home on Monday.
Above you can see pictured one of those typically beautiful and charming little vignettes that are to be found around every corner in this region. I'm not sure if I took this photo in St. Remy or in Les Baux, but honestly, does it really matter?
The famous amphitheater, Les Arenes de'Arles, is central to this Van-Gogh besotted city. I'm afraid it's not quite as impressive in real life as it is in photographs, and the ruins are undergoing some type of renovation that Anna and I seriously question. I love the ancient, crumbling part of the building--but the newer, restored sections? Not so much.
We sat down to have some French crepes at a small bistro just opposite the amphitheater and were treated to an impromptu parade of beautiful Carmague horses and riders in traditional costume. Just the sort of travel experience you can't always plan for...
Our first night in Pezenas, we did find a bead store, but it was shut for the evening. So we grabbed a quick kebab for takeout dinner and headed out to find Anna's friend's house. That was easy enough, and I really enjoyed our weekend stay there. Even the neighbor's noisy goose, who honked at all hours of the night, couldn't dispel the peaceful atmosphere of this delightful town.

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