Monday, October 26, 2009

Autumn really is one of our favourite times with the sun rising thru the mist and the sun set producing dramatic colours - and it is only October!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

This weekend sees the clocks 'fall' back an hour. The shops have 'operation chrysantheme' under way in readiness for next weeks All Saints 'Toussaint' holiday, when a Chrysanthemum is put on the grave of a loved one.
This always reminds us of the time we arrived on our neighbours doorstep clutching one as a gift and apology for putting our TV aerial on her roof by mistake. We shall never forget All Saints!

Friday, October 23, 2009

The New must have pet in Provence! One way of keeping the grass cut!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Over the last fortnight our gardeners have been working on the landscaping of our garden. This has involved huge amounts of earth moving to create a more 'user friendly' slope, so that a) we do not slip over when walking down the hill and b) when I attempt to cut the grass my mower does not topple over!

Now that we have planted the new baby olive 'sticks' we have to install irrigation other wise they will not survive.

The local co operative who supply all irrigation equipment also have a man who comes with this machine to carve a trench ready for the water pipes to be laid which is done manually.

These are our new trees.

We have also planted against the pool house and along the side of the pool infinity wall will be planted next week. Note the chateau at the top.

A nice day for late October and the garden still very much in colour. We have sewn grass seed over the rest of the garden so hopefully next summer we will be looking green rather than brown!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Provence is renowned for its markets. One of the best in our region is the Sunday market in Coustellet, about 20 minutes drive along the D2 , just past Gordes.

The market runs from Easter and finishes the Sunday before Christmas.

All of the produce is grown locally, this means you can only buy what is in season and you know its fresh.

In April the market is awash with Spring fruit and vegetables whilst in Autumn we are blessed with warm colours and food to provide winter dishes.

These ceppes are a real Autumn treat, at 25€ a kilo not cheap but incredibly tasty!

One of the biggest 'mushrooms ' I have seen, and they sold in minutes, there is no crisis when it comes to a French mans stomach!

This stall sells everything to do with Muscat grapes from juice to jam and the grapes them selves pefect with cheese.

Peppers of all sizes!

A very seasonal menu for Sunday dinner is offered in one of the many local restaurants.

Or perhaps something a little lighter and healthier, indeed my choice, a dozen Oysters

October, November & December are three of the best months for shell fish and crustaceans.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

I have posted a few photos from our weekend away on the cote d'azur for friends who keep up with our week to week activities, also for any one linking to the blog from our website, accommodationinprovence, as it is incredible how accessible such places are from the Luberon. Admittedly a day trip would be to short but a two centre trip would work well. That being said, we were fortunate enough to be visiting low season, in summer its a different place - not for us I would say - way too busy!

We really liked Gassin, a perched village near Ramatuelle & St Tropez with stunning views and some really nice restaurants. The presentation of the Marie's office gives an indication of the smartness of the village, but it is not spoilt.

This picture, taken from Gassin has the houses of St Tropez in the foreground, whilst on the other side of the water is St Maxine. What is incredible is that the Mountains behind are the start of the Alps.

This is the harbour at Cavalaire, a modern seaside resort with a good beach. It enjoys a very protected position from the wind.

The Marie's office at Ramatuelle is again indicitive of the areas wealth. It is a living hilltop village with superb vistas towards the bay of Pampelonne beach.

Moored off Pampelonne beach, the yachts 'park up' for lunch and the beach clubs come and collect the guests to bring them a shore.

We found this lovely beach near St Maxime, at Le Issambres, clean quiet and peaceful gently sloping into the med!

And our final stop was Frejus, where we rather liked the new Port, great restaurants, lots of nice looking appartments and a huge number of yachts.

Well time to go home and see what the gardeners have been up to!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Life's a beach! well lunch on the beach actually.

Trying out a bit of water skiing and wave jumping .....

Returning home for sundowners...

And incase you wondered - no its not me!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Our Bond tribute!! My Ursula Andress!

And her Daniel Craig!!!......

Whilst we enjoy a beautiful view of the Luberon from home, holidays are all about change! We are very fortunate to be able to use a friends house in Port Grimaud, just across the bay from St Tropez. Just two and a half hours drive away it is like being in a different world to home!

A rather spendid view to wake up to from our bedroom.

As ever there is an amazing selection of yachts in St Tropez, even now, the beginning of October.

And like all French villages and towns it has a boule club where many locals meet each evening to play, chat and pass the early evening.

It brings out some colourful characters!

Whilst in the world of retail there a few signs of a 'La crise' biting!

The hills behind this yacht 'le Massif des Maures' provide an impressive back drop.

We watched this yacht, 'My little violet' berth, 144 metres long and sold in 2006 for 23 million Euros. And the first thing to arrive on request of the 'staff'.......

Eight Pizzas!

Friday, October 09, 2009

We have found almost 50 Olive trees , well stumps/trunks that will create new trees. These are the 'babies' of the original trees on our land and date to about 1900.
They have to be dug out, seperated and pruned hard before being re planted.

Before going away there is just time for Karen to dead head the petunia's which are still going strong even in October!

Thursday, October 08, 2009

We have left our gardener carrying out phase 3 of the planting schedule and Thijs carrying out various snagging jobs! Away to Port Grimaud, nr St Tropez for the weekend.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

We learnt a big lesson Sunday - when you go walking don't always follow your nose - take a MAP!

The upside was we saw some wonderful scenery and great views. Although we had not quite expected to be here looking at Villars from this angle.

Our Sunday stroll became about a 12 kilometre hike!

The market in Apt, Saturday, still busy and awash with fresh produce and supeb colours, the atmosphere is so pleasant to sit and watch life go by!

Keep the wife happy with a nice bunch of flowers!! (can't believe I said that)

Perfect for evening aperos!