November miscellany

Now that winter really has arrived (temperatures down to -4°C Thursday night), we thought we should do a round-up of some autumn colours and scenes that we haven’t been able to include in other blogs.

We did a fairly local walk with the walking group a few weeks ago. Looking across to the splendid crags of the Rocher de Roquebrune, it was hard to remember that in between us was not only part of a town but a busy main road, the main railway line and the motorway. The rugged nature of  the land here encourages traffic to swing around rather than go through them.

Rocher de Roquebrune

Rocher de Roquebrune

After the long hot and dry summer, autumn here brings renewed growth with the first rains.  It’s a busy time for gardeners and you often hear the buzz of hedge trimmers as everyone desperately tries to contain the suddenly exuberant growth. The risk of of forest fires means that all fires are banned over summer so autumn is also the season when, as you can see below, smoky bonfires are lit to rid gardens of cuttings and other vegetable debris. (We are boring and take our branches to the local recycling place.)

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We also get autumnal mists and haze, as seen in this view below over Taradeau. Our house is just off the edge of the middle right-hand side of the image. You can see why we like living here.

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If you visit in summer, the vineyards are uniformly green, but at this time of year they turn all shades of yellow, orange, red and brown as  above. So do the leaves of the great plane trees which shade so many roads and squares.

The leaves have turned almost to the colour of the post van which you can see at the end of the square

The leaves have turned almost to the colour of the post van which you can see at the end of the square

It’s not just the colours that change. Below is Bauduen on the shores of Lac Sainte Croix, which looks very different now the beach is deserted, the boats safely moored and the restaurants closed. It was a hillside village until they created the lake as a reservoir.

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So finally we leave you with a picture of the sun on the trees near Lac Sainte Croix, though we hasten to add that the sun doesn’t always shine on Provence or the Cote d’Azur – but that’s a story for another blog.

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