Wednesday, October 08, 2008
Normally I’d send a personalized letter to each of you, but our facilities, such as they are, have been challenging; camping in frigid conditions and covering distances we never anticipated but yesterday afternoon we arrived in paradise outside the town of Lavelanet, near the ruined castle of Montsegur in the Pyrenees. In fact, from my kitchen window, it’s the view I see when I have my morning coffee. We’re staying with Nigel, a friend of Paul’s, who bought the property about fifteen years and never looked back. I can see why. The majesty of these mountains is so enchanting and the environs thankfully still unspoiled that we’ve decided not to go the Greece. (If we had another month we could do it, but…even I find that a bit too greedy).
So we’re going to stay here at Nigel’s for another few days (besides, there’s a party on Thursday night that I couldn’t bear to miss) and then head down the Cote D’Azur, dividing the rest of our time between Northern Italy, Croatia (we both want to see the Dalmatian Coast again, especially Korchula and Hvar) and a quick trip into Munich to see Natalia, Tomek and Elzbieta.
The highlights so far have been the climb to the top of Mont St. Michel and the climb to the top of Rocamadour where we saw the Chapel of the Black Madonna. Exquisite. We’ll be off on a hike today and a stop in Mirepoix; tomorrow the steep climb up Montsegur.
I’m hoping Paul will be able to attach pictures to this letter; if not, then I’ll send them along when we get home.
We’re having the time of our lives; loving every minute together. Amazing things happen when you challenge yourself. (I think so, anyway).
I’d like to say I’ll be sending post cards, but we’re moving too fast for that and it’s hard to write in a tent.
Look us up on the map and you’ll get a general idea where we are, where I’m thinking about you, missing you and wishing you were here too.
As I close this letter, I’m wondering if maybe we shouldn’t instead head south through Spain into Morocco – I’ll have to speak to Paul about that…see what he thinks. I’m pulling out the maps again – I’ll let you know.
PS – We’ll have to save Morocco for another trip.
Last night, feasted on Cassoulet, crusty bread, red wine, whisky and watched the classic International Hotel (W.C. Fields, Gracie Allen, George Burns, Bela Lagosi, Cab Calloway) with Nigel in the Blues Bar and laughed so hard our sides split.