Monday, March 05, 2007

Les Baux and la Camargue

Later in the week we made another excursion in the car, this time inland to Les Baux and St. Remy.

Later in the afternoon we backtracked and headed for the coast.
Arles sits on the Rhone at the point where it enters the marshy delta region known as the Camargue, famous for it's white horses, it's fighting bulls, and a large population of flamingos. The flamingos migrate to and from Africa, though a certain percentage remain in the Camargue year round. Beth and I had the good fortune to see another major flamingo nesting area in southern Mexico a few years ago, so this was a nice treat.
The area is windswept and covered by shallow ponds, some quite large. The Mediterranean Sea coastline forms the southern watery border of the Camargue.

Arles and the Camargue are also famous for their mosquitos but they come right about the same time as the tourists. One of the locals told me you could always tell the German and Dutch tourists in the summer by the big red welts on their torsos. Another reason I'm glad we came in late February.

We were lucky with the weather. We had a good visit here in Provence. I'm glad we came.

On the way home we drove past these two nukes purring (is that what nukes do?) away in the countryside...wierd but perhaps a glimpse of things to come?

When we got home we were treated to a 70 degree day on the beach on Sunday. A beautiful way to wrap up a two week vacation. Some time in the future I plan on posting a few more reflections on the amount and frequency of vacation time in France (for teachers), suffice it to say for now that it feels very nice. In about and hour and a half I'll be in front of my secondes thoughts bend back toward school, luckily I'm ready!


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