I’m not sure what the weather is like in Wisconsin right now, but in France this last week and weekend we’ve had warm temperatures and sunny skies. It’s been glorious.
We were able to make the most of the beautiful weather by joining friends in Saint Agnant, about 30 minutes from the Atlantic Ocean, just outside of Rochefort.
Saturday morning we joined our friend Christell’s parents for une tuerie (the butchering of animals). I remained on the sidelines while the other prepared the ducks.
As usual, we were received like royalty and enjoyed a wonder lunch. Our hosts explained the dish as being a local dish and when it was served, it turns out that it is a dish that my grandmother used to make. I think my family called it “boiled dinner” but it’s basically cabbage, carrots, potatoes, sausages, and another meat boiled together. I found it interesting how people from different cultures (with my grandmother’s family having Polish and German ancestry) share similar dishes. It was a nice lunch and brought back memories of my dear Gramma Ruby.
To help digest, we took a walk in the woods to look for mushrooms. Unfortunately, it’s been a bit too dry, so we didn’t find any edible ones. This is something I really enjoy about France: the yearly hunt for wild mushrooms. I don’t know what I’m looking for so I don’t pick them when I’m by myself. But when I’m with a knowledgeable person who knows their mushrooms, I enjoy participating.
On the way home we stopped in nearby Romegoux where, for the last twenty years, scultpors have been welcomed to this former stone quarry to give free rein to their imagination.
Each year, new works are born, some carved directly into the walls of this former quarry. The quarry’s stone was once used for the construction of many buildings in France, including Fort Boyard just off the western coast.
This year, from May until September, six sculptors will pass their summer creating their works of art around the theme of “The Caribbean.” Then on Saturday, September 11, they will unveil their works and there is a huge public party.
As you can see from the photos, the sculptures vary in style and detail, but they are all beautiful and enormous. There are so many that we weren’t able to see them all, but we’re planning to go back again.
After our visit, we joined other friends (remember l’éclade?) for dinner and dancing, and perhaps a bit too much cognac (French brandy). But a fun time was had by all and we were happy to have enjoyed the beautiful autumn weather with great people.
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