France – Some Observations

Cows

Cows are not the first thing that comes to mind when you think of France, but beef burgundy is very popular and the cows in Burgundy are almost always white.  

 

Postal Delivery by Bike

Nolay was the nearest village with significant shopping and restaurants. One day we noticed a man and a woman on yellow bikes with baskets. It turns out they are the postal delivery people for the town.   

 

Graveyards 

When you walk through a cemetery in a French village, most of the tombs have a collection of small plaques and other objects on them. These appear to be condolence messages or memorabilia left by friends and family members. They are free standing and weather resistant, so they appear to be left there permanently.  

 

Fake Windows

The cheapest way to create an extra window on the outside is to paint it on. We saw several houses that had done just that.   

 Real shutters with painted window.

 A few even painted a picture of the owner looking out the fake window.  

 This is a real window opening with a thoughtful wood sculpture. 

Back Road Travel

We brought our Garmin for the drive around France and we would not have been able to make the drive without it. However, the Garmin knows a lot of shortcuts and has a real penchant for the back roads. The small villages have a lot of techniques to reduce the speed through the town such as narrow spots where only one car can pass at a time, allowing three cars to park on one side of the street and then three on the other side so you have to zig zag through town, or using medians and barriers to force a zig zag drive through town. But the reward of the back roads is you see a lot of pretty towns and scenery.  

   I had never seen a field of sunflowers in bloom before. I was hoping for a lavender field, but we were too far north. 

Ivy

I love the ivy growing on the houses, but it looks like it could be a lot of pruning to keep your windows clear.  

 

Security

After commenting for eight weeks that you never see any policemen around, there were police, security, and military everywhere today including on both our trains. We presume it is a result of the incidents in Leon, France and elsewhere yesterday. We also changed trains at the station at the Milan World Expo today, which might also account for some of the security. We actually walked outside the station and were right at the gates of the Expo or Worlds Fair. Yesterday, we drove through the outskirts of Leon and had no knowledge of the incident at that time. Anyway, we are in Switzerland and feel perfectly safe. 

2 thoughts on “France – Some Observations”

  1. I loved this post. A veritible plethora of tidbits. Since my elderly cat and some health issues of my own have kept me home this year, I’ve enjoyed traveling with the two of you. Thank you.

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