Friday, June 29, 2007

Entre deux mers...le Medoc

We decided yesterday to try seeing the Medoc...the area south and west of the Gironde river. It's principally a wine producing area and home to some of the most high profile wine producers in France. It's right in our back yard but we've put off exploring it till the last minute. Actually, truth be told, Beth and I remain wine remain untutored in the mysteries of wine and so we have intuited that a great deal of what the Medoc has to offer might well be lost on us. Also, wine tasting is not exactly a kid friendly activity.






We stop first Macau for a short walk along the river. Next we and go on to Chateau Margaux, a magisterial place, where we picnic on the grounds. The cellars are closed, tours by reservation only.














The vineyards and the promenades are beautiful however. As has been our good fortune all year, we are there before the crowds have begun to arrive so the entire place is tranquil.














We eat sandwhiches on the grass beside a canal. A herd of cattle quietly grazes on the other side. From where we sit one can see vineyards stretching out all the way to the horizon, the distant drone of tractors and mowers reminds you that for all it's picturesque beauty it is a working farm.
A nearby neighboringl chateau appears on the horizon like a prop in a feudal pageant.







The kids climb a nearby cedar and soon they are completely out of sight, somewhere high above the ground hidden within the cocoon of green branches.












The sky is a patchwork of brilliant blue and fleecy white which accent the pale yellow washed walls,













the lavender flowers,














and the lemon fruit hanging from the branches.













We drove next to Paulilac where the kids enjoyed a little museum of automated dolls. if you look closely you can find Tess in the photo.








We walked around the streets a bit noticing little things the shadows on the streets and wall clamps shaped like human figurines used for fastening the volets.












Perhaps some day we'll returnto the Medoc and give it a fair chance but for now we're content to have passed through on a sunny afternoon.
K

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