Hello Everyone, I am safely back from my painting trip to France. Our group was led by Jeff Legg, the extraordinary artist from Estes Park, Colorado. Before I tell you about our painting experiences, I thought I'd give you a sense of where we were based. The photo above shows you the bridge that leads into the town of Limoux, and if you step out of our backdoor, this is pretty much the scene that greets you everyday.
We would cross the bridge to shop, take photos, or have lunch in the town square and people watch. I kept going back to the same little bistro that made a lasagna with fluffy white French cheese and a huge salad on the side. The waiter there knew that I wanted a Coke as soon as I sat down, and that we wouldn't be staying for the typical 2.5 hour French lunch. We were here to WORK! (Ah, typical Americans, I can hear him thinking).
Here is the view from our bedroom window at Montfaucon, the name of our house. It was originally used as a toll house for boats coming down the river.
One French tradition that I adapted to very quickly was having blanquette, a bubbly wine made from the grapes in the region before every meal, along with a selection of cheeses from the market and sweet jams.
And then came DINNER. Here is the dining room in our house, where we often sat for our three hour, many coursed dinner. After the first couple of nights where we squirmed in our seats and eyed the door, we settled in to the dining experience and actually enjoyed chatting with friends and our hosts. I thought we would run out of things to talk about, but that never happened! Silence always descended upon us when dessert was served. Our focus was turned elsewhere during that course!
Here we all are, with Jean Francois, our chef. Do we look happy? Oh you betcha!