Sunday, 22 September 2019

Our morning walk

Mortimer is ready to go - are you coming too?
Back in March some of you came with us on our evening walk with Mortimer and I did say that you could join us for our morning promenade if you wished. Today seems perfect, still cool but with a promise of a gorgeous autumn day ahead. It's a bit more strenuous than the evening stroll but definitely worth the effort.

All set? OK so like before we're turning right out of the drive and heading into the centre of the village. Yes, well remembered, that's where we turned down to go into the 'ville clos' but this time we're going through the centre of Corrèze. That's our boulangerie, Madame is very kind about my French and I have a mini lesson each day, but I don't think I'll ever get the hang of 'millefeuille myrtilles'. Those boards? we're fortunate to have several marked walks and cycle routes of varying degrees of difficulty that start in the village and these show you the routes.

Entrance to Corrèze ville clos

Our boulangerie

Walking and cycle paths in Corrèze

As you can tell from Mortimer's insistence that we cross the road our traiteur has the rotisserie chickens on the go. Bernard Fraysse is an award winning traiteur (it's like a delicatessen) as well as being a superb butcher.

Sadly closed but I just love the tiles
We're now starting the long climb out of the village so just tell me if you want to stop.  We moved here from the Fens in Norfolk where we were at sea level and not a hill in sight, so all these hills and 500 metres altitude came as a bit of a shock! This is the Atelier du Pénitent Blanc, I love the style of pottery here and covet one of the striding pilgrim figures. I suspect it's so named because it's situated opposite the Chapelle des Pénitents Blancs up there. Yes that's the village cemetery, I know I need to have a good look round too - maybe we'll do that another day as I think it will be worth spending some time in there.

Atelier du Pénitent Blanc

Chapelle des Pénitents Blancs

You see that walnut tree? We turn left there up to Vieux Foirail, I love that every cluster of houses, however small has a name. This is quite steep, you can see Mortimer starts plodding and falls behind. When we're pushed for time we cut a corner off the walk and go up these steps but not today. Down there is an old lavoir, there are a lot in the village and in fact one of the marked walks I was telling you about earlier is called 'lavoirs et fontaines'. Originally they were used to do the laundry but many are like this now, home to water lilies.

Vieux Foirail

Old lavoir
We're turning left up this track and I promise the final uphill section. In the summer it's lined with hundreds of wild strawberry plants and there is the most beautifully scented honeysuckle. This house? It's cute isn't it and for sale I believe, as is one of my favourite buildings. I love this barn, actually a small house and barn, if you just look round the back you can see it has a bread oven too.

That's it for uphill now, unless you want to do an extended walk? Maybe another time. One of the things I love about the village is the amount of livestock and chickens that you see in 'normal' gardens. These hens are quite bold and come up to the fence, I do count them each morning though! Earlier in the year there were two beautiful Limousin cows in this field and then of course we have the goats, they seem to prefer life off the ground.

This has to be one of my favourite views of Corrèze, you can see why this lane is called Belle Vue. Down there is La Poste and watching the small, yellow postal vans is like seeing Trumpton in the flesh. I'll see if I can find you some photographs in different seasons.

Today's view of Corrèze

Last winter

For some reason I love this shed and seem to have quite a lot of photographs of it!
We're heading down here, look -  another lavoir. You may have noticed some iron crosses as we've walked, some of our route has been on the 'Voie Rocamadour' which is part of the Santiago de Compestela pilgrimage route. I forgot to point out a small cross by a barn further back, crosses were often placed by barns or fields to protect harvests.

Lavoir lily pond

I was about to say that we're coming up to our small supermarket and Gamm Vert and that they were not quintessentially French, just blocky buildings round a car park, but actually I think they are. Anyone who has spent time in France will be familiar with the out of town shopping malls. This is not in that league but not overly photogenic either, however I'm very pleased that we have them within a few minutes walk of our house.

We're nearly home now, just down this hill and we've completed the full circuit. Go on, through the gates, and if you want to go down to the terrace I'll put the kettle on. Tea or coffee?

Tea or coffee?
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  1. Ah, such happy memories! We were with you every step of the way.

  2. Just a lovely walk. Your words and pictures took me with you. Thank you


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