Hit Or Miss

I’m always on the lookout for signs put up in villages in Provence advertising brocantes or vide greniers. They can be a lot of fun and while I don’t always have a lot of luck finding great things, it’s always interesting. The last time I went however, most of the things were laid out on grass in a parking lot and it was really hot and, unfortunately, I didn’t see anything I wanted. That didn’t keep me from taking photos of course.


Where to begin?


I always see coffee mills like these for sale.


There are often butcher blocks too.


Since this baby buggy was so low to the ground, I’m assuming it was used by a little girl.


I thought this was rather clever-a canoe cut in half with shelves inside used for wine bottles. It was a little too rustic for my tastes.

Jardin

I made another trip with a friend to Val Joanis. She was trying to find a dish she had bought there a couple of years ago that had broken. No luck with the dish but the gardens were still great.


This way into the gardens.


I’ve always liked succulents-so easy to grow in heat.


Did you know that if you left artichokes without picking them, that they bloom this great purple color?


Some bottles of pureed fruit for making drinks for sale in the gift shop.

Lavender

My son, who lives in Switzerland, and his family came for a long weekend recently. Of course, we had to take them to see the lavender. They are going to be back in time to visit the lavender festival too on July 19th.


Not all of the lavender fields look this great with hardly a weed in site. This is one of my favorite fields to stop at for photos.


A view from the other end.


Three of the four grandsons setting off to explore. The youngest can’t walk well enough yet. The oldest got bitten on his knee by a bee because he tried to cross through some lavender.

At Last!

It’s taken a while but the lavender has started to bloom and we heard the first cigale, a sure sign that summer is here in Provence.


Maybe I should have gotten this book about cigales. I saw it at the Val Joanis vineyard gift shop.


I’m not a huge fan of spiders but I liked the web design that this one did in the middle of some of the lavender in our yard.


Reflections in the corner of our pool. I love the yellow flowered genet that blooms in May and early June. It has a wonderful sweet fragrance.

Sheep

If you ever want to see a river of sheep move down a narrow village street, visit Riez during their transhumance, a long held tradition of moving sheep from the low pastures of Spring up to the high pastures of the mountains for grazing. Much of this is now done with trucks but they show you what it was like a couple of hundred years ago.


They had demonstrations in the village such as this guy shearing a sheep.


There is a little parade before the sheep arrive with colorfully dressed participants who also put on traditional dances.


Here they come. There were about 1000 sheep, 3 shepherds and two dogs to keep them all under control.


Look at this guy standing right in the middle of that moving mass of sheep. I’d be afraid I’d get run over, but I think the sheep mostly just go around things that frighten them.


And there they go. A fun thing to see.

Rainbows and Raindrops

Provence is gearing up for summer. May is usually cool with a few very warm days here and there and there are occasional rainy days to keep everything green. The other day it rained all day without stopping but by evening it cleared up and the clouds separated letting the sun through which meant a rainbow on the other side of the sky. I was in the house doing something when I happened to glance outside and gave a little scream of excitement and rushed outside with my camera. Maurice and I even got in the car to go up the hill a bit to see if I could get a photo of the whole thing but I didn’t have my wide angled lens with me. It was so exciting to see, one of the largest and brightest that I have seen in a long time and it made you understand why there are so many stories about rainbows.


Maybe there could be a pot of gold at the end of this.


A view from up the hill a way.


I liked how it was pink inside the rainbow.

The next morning I could see raindrops hanging from plants and decided to try my luck photographing them.


There’s something magic about raindrops too-a little world magnified.