Thursday, 7 August 2008

It's been a while...

We've been busy but we're going to try to do better with the blog - largely through me contributing too - the photos will still largely be Guy's though - and if I post any of mine you will notice the difference immediately.

We're in high summer and the temperatures are in the mid 30s - and the pool is a very comfortable 30 degrees. The garden is looking lovely (pictures to follow soon) and Guy has been working very hard to keep it looking fabulous. But it's not all hard work. Summer is the season of festivals in Provence and our village is 'en fête' at the end of May, around the 14th of July, on the weekend of the 15th of August and again in September. Everyone turns out, the streets are packed and it's a great opportunity to see all of our neighbours and friends. The village fêtes tend to follow the same pattern. They start like this...

With these beautiful women dressed in the traditional costumes of Arles, who dance at the head of the procession. They're all from the village and keep this finery for the fêtes and to maintain their traditions, of which, they are quite rightly very proud.

We move swiftly on to this...

... this takes your breath away. A charrette, decorated with huge tree branches being pulled through the street by 16 galloping cart horses. The ground shakes...we all stand well back, particularly as they take the corners. That's our plumber, Robert, in the smart black hat and suit...the Sunday costume of the Camargue cowboy.

And we end the day like this....

... in the bull ring watching the course camarguaise...a local form of bull fighting where the aim is to remove tightly wrapped strings from the bull's horns. It's exciting to watch and is a real battle of man against beast. The bull pretty much always comes out on top and it's the men who risk being hurt in this more acceptable form of the sport.

And after the course camarguaise, we all head back into the village for a pastis to gird our loins for the Abrivado - a bull running in the street where 5 Camargue horsemen and women ride bulls through the streets and the locals try to smuggle them away from the horsemen - it can get very messy.....but we love it and really admire the locals for keeping these fantastic traditions going.

More photos of the fête at Festivals, Provence


  1. Good to have you back!

  2. As you'll see my blogging skills are not's not very intuitive this blogger thing...didn;t mean that long gap at the end....and it's murder getting the photos where they should be! Glad you are still reading ...wonder who else is....

  3. Gap at the end's gone now - seems Explorer's worse for blogging in than Safari.