Chateau of Grignan

Tapestries from the Chateau of Grignan

Tour of Provence – June 11-21, 2017

Day 3 – June 13 – Visit to the weekly open-air market; lunch in Vaison-la-Romaine; and a visit to the Chateau of Grignan.

We visited the open-air market in Vaison-la-Romaine – again it was really hot – in the mid 30s I think. People were dragging their poor dogs around without thinking that they might need water. And children were getting hot and tired – I think some people don’t understand that even it they are coping with the heat, their children (especially babies) and their pets may not be.

Anyway, my cold was fully operational! Corinne took us to where we were going to have lunch, so that we could find our way back. Then the others went off to do some shopping. As I wasn’t wanting to buy anything, and I wasn’t feeling like buying anything, I just wandered around looking at the stalls and taking a few photos.

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However, I did buy some nougat – but even at a market it wasn’t cheap – I got the smallest slice possible and it still cost me 12 Euros – and I got the stall holder to cut it into pieces – there were about 10. So no more nougat buying for me.

I went back to the restaurant about 45 minutes before we had to be there but at least I could sit down. I was told by one of the group that there was a chemist across the square so I managed to buy some antihistamine – which helped a bit.

P1000340 mktWe were having lunch in an organic restaurant called O’Natur’elles and we all chose the vegetarian salad plate. The other option was a hot lamb stew!

There is a lot more to this town than we saw but as happens on every tour, you cannot see everything – to do that you have to stay in one place.

Corinne walked back to get the van – she said it was 50 deg C inside the van – so it took her a while to get the temperature down to a level where she could drive it – meanwhile we waited inside the air conditioned Tourism Centre.

Because of the temperature there was another change to the itinerary and we decided not to do the walking tour to the medieval section of hilltop Vaison! And as we had visited Alain Ignace the day before so we had a free afternoon so we visited the Chateau of Grignan.

On the way to the Chateaux we stopped at an outlet so some of the others could buy lavender products, I bought a lovely lavender handcream but nothing else.

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These are houses on the way to the Chateau

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When we arrived, the locals were playing petanque near the Chateaux car park – we saw this quite often – but no women, only men. And with such concentration!

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Playing petanque
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The Chateau and lavender fields

Taken from the Visitor’s guide: “This is where the Marchionnesse de Sévigné stayed during the 17th century. (She is the writer mentioned on the website). In ruins after the French Revolution it was rebuilt during the 20th Century”.

We went through the exhibition on Madame de Sévigné’s letter writing – she wrote hundreds of them. But we couldn’t take photos of the outside as there was a scaffolding for a stage and seating in the way – for another concert during the summer sometime.

This is from the website – The château of Grignan has for ever been associated with Madame de Sévigné, a woman of letters made famous when her correspondence was published. She often described the “magnificent” quality of the château where her daughter Françoise-Marguerite lived with her husband, the Count of Grignan and Governor of Provence. She only stayed for four years but the “Sévigné impact” definitely left its mark on the place and collective memory.

This is the link to my Google photos album – Chateau of Grignan Some of the photos are of terrible quality if you open them (I still hadn’t read the manual) and I can’t work out how to delete them now they are on the Google photo album!

After this we went back to L’Aube Safran to rest and relax before dinner.

Dinner that night was at Chez Serge in Carpentras but although my food, especially the salmon was great, some of the others food wasn’t so good and the service was terrible and very, very slow. We had truffle slices on bread at the beginning.

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Salmon slices marinated in beetroot

 

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Slices of summer truffles on bread
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Desert – cheesecake with a nougat stick

Because of the very slow service we didn’t get back until midnight, and we had to get up early the next day for our cooking lesson.

 

 

 

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