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Mirepoix 2 June 2016

1241 : 1000

Why not start with lunch?

We checked out of our boat, taxied to Narbonne, picked up our car, tried for a few minutes to find a parking place near Narbonne's famous market, gave up, and drove to Carcassonne for lunch at Christophe's phenomenal Le Blé Noir Crêperie. That's smoked duck and gizzards in my salad, and Rochelle's crêpe is mushrooms, tomatoes, cheese, and cream. Yum. We shared a sweet crêpe for dessert.

Merci, Christophe. We will return.

1242 : 993
<p>Carcassonne just happened to be...

Carcassonne just happened to be a likely lunch stop, but we couldn't resist walking across the Old Bridge and taking a picture of La Cité above us. We'll drive back one sunny day and spend the day exploring.

1243 : 990
<p>This is a transit day, and so...

This is a transit day, and so mostly we focus on getting from A to B without losing our sense of humor. We did fairly well on that today, only making one easily recoverable wrong turn (that had the lovely result of taking us over a windy one lane country road through some exquisite countryside and over the Canal du Midi. Just before Mirepoix, the land starts getting hilly, and these are a couple of the views back toward the broad valley transited by the Canal.

1244 : 988

We chose to spend time in Mirepoix because it is close to the Pyrenees amidst some beautiful foothills ... and it has a wonderful 15th Century “Medieval” center with wide galleries held up by massive wooden posts. And we love the name. I'm hoping that staying a week here will help me remember the name of the classic mixture of ingredients that find their ways into almost every savory French dish.

This corner of France (the southwestern) has been discovered by the British in recent years, and is favored for its food and affordable real estate. The pound has had a very favorable relationship with the euro for awhile, the weather is better, and it's much easier to be a foodie and wine lover here.

1245 : 984

Our hosts (or at least one of them) is a transplanted Brit, who's been renovating this old place – "it was a mess when we bought it" – salvaging its wonders and patching up its inevitable failures. Here's the central stairway, which easily dates back to the 19th Century. After the narrowboat, our apartment feel spacious, and we're looking forward to enjoying it as our home base for the next week.

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