Transcript for Episode 241: Lautrec and Castres in the Tarn

Categories: Day -Trips from Toulouse, Off the Beaten Track in France, Toulouse Area


This is join us in France Episode 241 Bonjour, I’m Annie Sargent and join us in France is a podcast where you’ll hear pragmatic advice for your next trip to France. Hopefully, you’ll get inspired to go beyond Paris and see the rest of France to on the podcast. I invite travel enthusiasts to join me for conversations about how their trip went, what they loved and what they wouldn’t do again. Join us in France get support from Patreon supporters one time donors and soon to be released at GPS aware tours. More on that after my chat with a lease. On today’s episode, Elise joins me to tell you about a few jewels out of the way places that you can visit in our neck of the woods. oxy Danny or the southwest of France will talk about the village of low tech where they grow the most wonderful purple garlic, the city of And it’s surprising go young Museum, the cinder block where you can go climbing and hiking, and she even gives me some tips about places I should visit this summer. If you’re interested in this episode, I recommend you also check out the other day trips we suggest from to lose that you can do with or without Elise, but she definitely makes those visits better. Show Notes and photos for this episode are on join us in forward slash 241 241

How are you? I am fine. Oh, good. You look good. I do you look full of spring. Summer.

I look, I look springy summary, but I still have a bad toe.

I’m sorry about your toe. Yeah,

but I’m glad I look good.

Yeah, you look good. You look. You look lively. I look


What are we talking about today? We’re

going to do a day in the torn down. PITRLNETARN Yeah, we’ve been sort of circling around to lose. Yep, day in the chairs. Dan alpha. Yes, we’re kind of touching all the different departments that are in the vicinity of to lose. And the tone is actually fairly big. And it’s got lots and lots and lots of things, but

right necessarily, if it’s a day in, we’re not gonna we’re talking

about everything right, exactly. I just it’s a kind of A little itinerary for a full day that I’ve done. And it’s really nice because it’s very varied. The when we did the JRC it was largely very historical buildings, you know, Abby’s and little villages. This is going to be a little bit different because it’s a combination of little history and a little bit of art and a little bit of nature. Nice. And it’s definitely doable in one day.

From today, it’s Imagine you’re saying into his driveway and you want to go full

day. Yeah, it’s a good full day, but we’re going to do it in the order of little bit of history, a little bit of art and a little bit of nature. Okay, and then and then coming back. So basically, obviously, you can do some or all of this in the same day, but it is very feasible to do it all. It’s a full day. It’s a nice full day of activity. Excellent. Okay. So firstly, we’re going to visit the village of low tech

is like low tech. Yes a light yellow light hauls

little crack is is actually listed as one of the approval v dash default. Right. It’s on that list. It’s it’s really quite beautiful. I’ve been there a number of times.

It’s so that’s most beautiful village and most branches.

Yeah, that which of course is enable it’s a label but it means that they’re very well taken care of it means that they have things of historical interest and are very well taken care of. Yeah, buildings have been restored. There are flowers everywhere, so it makes them very nice to visit. Now, it’s not as well known, and therefore not as touristy as some much more famous ones like courts or SEO and things like that. But it is really very nice. And it’s in the middle of rolling hills. Yeah, that part of the time as you get the time is an interesting department because as you get further north and east, it gets more rugged. makers, it’s actually going into the central mountains column sex on par. And this area and then if you go to the south east, it actually winds up being almost Mediterranean like, but in this part, it’s pretty much northeast, north by northeast, I’d say North East east or something like that from from Toulouse. It’s it’s very beautiful rolling Hill Country. Yeah, very nice little valleys, but not big deal. You know, that kind of thing. And the village is in fact, the name. low tech, of course, is part of the heritage of our famous painter to do so tech. Yeah. The interestingly enough, I was doing a little research because my original idea was simply just to talk about what it looks like today and why it’s fun to go to. But then of course, I did a little bit of research on the history of it, and was actually surprised to discover how old it is. It’s older than cords are stale. So sale was Created in the 1100s Mm hmm. And this was actually created in the 1900s. And it was what they called at the time of custom, which means that it was a fortified castle on the top of the hill. Okay, kind of like a peak, not super high. But the classroom was basically I guess an idea that the people in the Middle Ages took from maybe the Romans was that you were talking at a time when things still were fortified because there was always everything was dangerous, you know, everything out there, whatever it was, everything was out there was dangerous. It could have been people, wolves, it doesn’t matter. Everything was dangerous. But so they chose sites that were high up a little bit that could be fortified. And that could give you a view all the way around. And I the root of cast room is the same as castle basic. Yeah, in Latin. And so it turns out that that is what it was that they’ve done archaeological digs, they found that it was actually a Celtic site way before the Romans came. And then of course, the Romans came through like they did almost Everywhere, especially here in the southwest of France, but its original. Its its official history begins in the year 940. Wow. And it was actually created as a fortified Castle by the accounts who were designated by Charlemagne. Wow. I mean, it’s I guess it was his sons by the nine sons or grandsons, but they were part of the county, the counts of you know, etc. And it was a Benedictine Abbey that’s its beginning. So it was it was, you know, in in the Middle Ages in France, the origin of things is either religious in terms of some kind of religious structure or a castle for a lord and then a little bit later commercial and get to the best deed and those nice villages

You know, I’m sure there were other structures they will probably other villages but they were not built with materials that have remained right exact so probably they were such huts and you know, all sorts of habitations that just live Of course,

you know this is this place where low trek is is stone country you know so obviously the the ramparts it had double ramparts there’s only two doors that still exists. And I don’t remember whether you can really see that they were double ramparts but apparently, because it was created with a donation from the end, you know, I guess it was Charlemagne, his grandchildren. They were given a lot of money. So they made this very beautiful Benedictine monastery and then protected it with a set of two sets of walls. So it became very, very important and the area around it the land is very rich. So yeah, the actual village right now of course is upon top with some new modern houses down below. Made out of stone but Obviously you were right, you know, the peasants and the people who are not quite as wealthy. They would have had the fetched roof houses that were on the hillsides, you know, going up and then a little bit.

So there were a lot of chateaus that were made of wood. They didn’t they didn’t make every Chateau out of stone. So they were the wooden chateaus have not survived. No, they

haven’t survived MMO pally sad, which would have been the first original ramparts right have made but have been made out of stone as well. You know, but amazingly, you mean would that he said the police said to him Yeah, it’s it’s made out of wood. Yeah, the point with the points on on top Yeah. What do they say I don’t know what to say. Right now. The village actually has 1700 people which is fair amount for a village of permanent residence, which includes you know, people who live down below not inside the the actual 40 advocate shins that are still up on top, but believe it or not in the Middle Ages. It still has fortifications it has pieces of it. Okay guys pieces of it, and then the two very beautiful doors with a broken arch. really lovely. Okay. But it had in the Middle Ages 4500 people, which is a fairly good sized town, yeah, in the Middle Ages. And part of that is because it was in the center of an area that had very, very important agriculture. And also, it’s part of a larger area that already in the Middle Ages was very important for textiles, lots of sheep will and that kind of activity. And so it was really important in the Middle Ages, much more important than than I realized. And the reason it is now called low track is because there was a count or vibe count starting in the 11th century, who was his name was Sam. dilute Nissan ISARN It’s a name you see a lot from that time period.

Yeah. I never met somebody called No I

don’t. Today I don’t think you would. Unless it’s a zombie come back from 1000 years ago

that’d be a good novel character name yeah sound

the sun yeah the sun come here a sudden I don’t know it just has is a very ancient cabinet and cat name is sorry. Okay. Maybe Maybe. Anyway. But anyway, and and he was the ancestor of to do so check. Okay, so it really is in the long term connected to the the family of our to lose track. Yeah, the painter. Yeah, right. And so it was known. It was very famous for the Middle Ages because it was the by counts castle because it was very wealthy. Now right now there are two pieces of ramparts. left and a very beautiful door called door in the sense of the doors entering into a fortified town and one of them is called the port the lap co sad. I’m assuming that that’s in the northern direction because that’s where co sad is going towards the north probably. And and and it’s and it had its situations as they would say. The vicissitudes Yes, it survived endless numbers of conflicts. A lots of these towns, of course in the southwest of France really did. It was taken by some on demand for in the war with the Qatar Boo. Boo, the bad guy, boo Simone, the mocha and then it was released eventually. And then it was a victim of the War of religion between the Protestants and the Catholics. And interestingly enough, because It’s very close to the place where I want to talk about next which is the city of cast ca which is very close by it’s only 17 kilometers away yeah cast caught it during the period of the


Castle became for reasons I’m not really sure of stronghold of Protestantism during the war religion and low tech stayed very very Catholic. Okay, so at some point it was invaded and a lot of things were destroyed and this is of course as we’re talking in the 1500s by the Protestants because it went both ways. The fighting unfortunately was it nasty period of time for you know, a lot of people in France and so it suffered during the Qatar’s it suffered during the war, religion. And it during the French Revolution, the Benedictine Abbey was destroyed almost all of it except for the church which of course is true almost everywhere in France anyway. Yeah. And there had been another monastery that was very close by and that was destroyed as well. So it’s interesting because when you visit it now it’s very beautiful and you of course have no idea of all of this very movement to death they would say in French past with movement it’s

definitely not movement it

no no, no, that is not a word very agitated a very, very, very agitated test. It is really very lovely. orchard past tortured, thank you any less code, right? It’s much better good. We’re and

I did that without a sword

away. That is the source. Yes. The road is kind of it winds up a little bit. It’s not quite as windy or as impressive as priests will see a village we’ve talked about in the past, but you do have to drive all the way up unless you’re ambitious and you can leave your car Down below. And, and yeah. And it still, of course filled with really lots and lots and lots of houses from the 1500s and 1600s that have been beautifully restored. So it’s really lovely to see you go through the portal to get in. And it’s got these lovely little streets. And it has this gorgeous square with this covered marketplace, which is is really from the 1600s very beautiful with very beautiful carpentry. Lots of old houses. And if you go up a little further, and I’ve been there twice, there’s a Moulin avant windmill that is still in use. So you can visit us like for something useful? Yes, yes. Yes, it’s used to grind flower. Oh, so you can go up and visited and to be honest, I don’t remember now. I don’t think You have to pay to go inside I don’t remember. But they it’s constantly in use. And it is used for grinding the the wheat to turn into flour and it’s organic flour that is grown in the fields nearby and you can actually buy some there and there’s somebody there who explains how it works. And and of course, at the time that there were many, many windows in the area every hill was dotted with one you know that yeah, it was really very, it’s very picturesque and there’s a beautiful little garden around it so it’s up the highest point right above where are the old houses are. That probably happened a lot in the French countryside long ago because they used Mills for all sorts of thing right? They use them for grinding flour, they use them for water. I mean, it was usually done by the river if it was it was too. What else did they do with it and flax oil

they could do also are two things like in Paris they use the mills to grind the plaster the stone to make Plaster of Paris, right? They used they could use Mills to grind spices. Yeah, to get them find enough, you know to sell all sorts of kind of industrial procedures you have to grind things down to grind things down. So

anything you had to grind out and the other thing is, is that at the top, you’re right and in the 1500s in spite of the problems with the word religion, it was the center of pastel to a beautiful plant that makes the plan that makes the beautiful blue dye Yeah, and so at that the mill would have also been used for that because it was used to crush the leaves eventually be set out to dry and then turned into these balls called cook ganja. Yeah, yeah. So it was used to there was probably more than one the one that’s there was restored a bit I doubt if I think at the beginning of the 20th century it stopped being used but they put it back into use. And it was really fun to go up there and see how it works and then buy flour. That is really genuinely milled right there. However, just a warning, because it is organic flour, you have to use it relatively quickly. Yeah, it has no preservatives in it or anything like that. And so it’s a You can’t let you sit around. Yeah, too long, you know, it was bad. There’s also very beautiful church which is the only thing left of the Benedictine monastery, center me. And it’s got lots of artists and crafts people who live there. So it makes it very attractive as a place to visit because it has a few restaurants, it has boutiques. It has of course places where you can get a snack and it has some really interesting crafts shops. as well and of course it is this the town or the village of low trek is famous for the garlic festival. Yeah, and that is the first Friday and Saturday of August every year. Yeah, and if you drive This is strange. I mean the first time this happened I thought hmm really this only in France or maybe in Italy we do this happen but if you go driving on these little narrow country roads right around blow trick in the few weeks before the garlic festival, everything smells of garlic. And you’re out there in the middle of nowhere, and all sudden it’s like this, like somebody’s cooking, where are they? You know, I don’t see anything. I see trees, I see fields. I see maybe some move, you know, I mean, you know, and it’s because the garlic is ready to be harvested right and you can smell it and you can smell it everywhere and the it’s called pink garlic. There were several different kinds. This is one that’s got an OC. I mean, it’s labeled. It’s frickin expensive and it’s delicious. I don’t know, I can’t tell the difference. Oh, it’s really edit is it’s very aromatic.

Right? So you put a little bit more garlic and you get the same flavor.

Well, it’s not quite, it’s not as it’s actually soft. Explain it in a garlic can be, can have a bite to it. That has less of a bite. So it has the taste and the aroma of garlic, but it’s not. It doesn’t have that bite that some garlic have. And so what do they do? They do this whole Festival, which of course goes back probably to pagan times, actually. They have music. They have somebody dressed up as a giant head of a garlic. There’s a parade as you do. It just makes perfect sense, right? Why not? They have a huge, huge, huge communal meal. You have to pay for it, but you can participate as a four course meal. I was looking at the menu of last year’s and it would look the yummy absolutely yummy because that you make a lamb with garlic and that you know it they have all happened up with garlic you know, the desert doesn’t have garlic and isn’t the

best one of the best things ever made was a I can’t remember what it’s called but it’s like garlic paste. Yeah. Where you you take a whole bunch of garlic cloves Yeah, like like 10 heads so it takes forever to peel them right and then you submerge the garlic has to be submerged fully in olive oil. Okay, and you cook it on low, like really low. You don’t want it to burn. So I did it with I can’t remember the temperature is supposed to be but I could look it up but and you slow cook this garlic in the olive oil and then you mash it all up. It makes the best garlic spread. Like for garlic bread or for pizza

did Delicious, delicious,

whatever. Wherever to make is I put a head of garlic in the oven. Yeah. And roast it. Yeah. On a low, low heat. Yep. Which is also very good. And when you go to this garlic festival you can get well you can get that elsewhere at all the outdoor markets anyway, at the end of the summer. It’s fresh, but you have the what they call it test. Yeah, it’s a braid. It’s braided and it’s and it’s lovely. And of course, it’s very folkloric because you can hang it up but it is wonderful. fresh garlic is very, very, very different from the garlic that’s missing for months. You know? Yes, yes, yes. You get like in the middle of the dead end of the winter

around here. Garlic grows really well. You want to grow itself it’s not so hard,

but it’s fun and and so anyway, so glow trick is a lovely, lovely, lovely village. It’s a place that you can

either would you stay there?

Well, if you visit the windmill and it depended church and the church, I would say a good hour and a half ago. Held if you go into the shops longer if you have a stop for a snack or

several shops right? Oh, lots of shops Yeah.

And and a couple of nice restaurants and so it’s it’s a it’s about 15 minutes from Toulouse. Yeah. by car. So I would say that it’s an hour and a half to two hours of that that kind of Mount of time unless you’re a shopper, you know, you might want to stay longer because they do have some really interesting little shops there with some ceramics and cloth and things like that. It’s also a place if you choose to as an early lunch, you can eat there, you know, right. But, so I would say that I have time to stop there now. Okay, so then from there we go east, just about 17 kilometers. And we get to a city, the city of cast top. Yes, the city of cassava, which is the second largest city in the time department. The largest being LB. Right. It’s so it’s what in French is called the super thick GO, which means it’s a sort of assistant county seat. You know, I guess that’s what you’d have to say. It’s been under count DC because that’s what Sue means. Right? You know? It’s but it’s a it’s interestingly, growing faster because it’s gotten there right now 42,000 people, which is more than I thought, yeah. And it’s because in the last 10 years, there’s been a huge economic boom for because of industry, because of industry, this mechanical industry and Airbus industry, which has set up subsidiaries there. So it went through a period of real economic doldrums, but is becoming very, very dynamic. Yeah. And I happen to know, because it’s somebody who’s sort of related to the family, the person who runs the concert hall and casts he’s in charge of that. And he, he’s it’s very dynamic, and he said, everything is sold out absolutely all the time and he’s responsible for finding Different groups and things like that. But cassava so we go from a very beautiful medieval village in the middle of the countryside to a what really is a very interesting, small or medium. I guess we’re friends a medium sized city. Okay. 41,000 is definitely a medium sized city. And so the outskirts of cast are not particularly impressive. I mean, it’s just sort of typical of a lot of these relatively small cities. But the Old City Center which is not very big, is very, very, very interesting to visit. And castle has a very long history, and its history is partly connected to the textile industry. Because starting in the very early Middle Ages, it was the Center for tanning of leather, for the wall production and making of cloth And for making also wouldn’t shoes. Those were the three principal industries in the Middle Ages. Now what is there to see in cast? Now it is it’s a small city so obviously if you haven’t had lunch in low tech, there are two enormous squares one is called the plaza genre is because it’s also connected to the history of our famous john joyous and it’s lined with lovely little places to eat. I don’t have any specific one to mention but I’ve had lunch there a couple of times and lots of little places that you can eat

cake with your nose

pick with your nose and you know look at the menu and whatever I mean it’s you know, it’s a very lovely big, very big, square rectangular square. It drives me crazy to say square I’d like to say plus because it makes it easier. The city of castle is cut through by the river Cali ago before I go ag UT, Lego Lego Jungle Book and which is a tributary of the turn. Okay, I’m here at the time but not the empties into the heart. And the water is from the come from the massive sonkar before they go into the torn so there, it’s fairly cold water general most of the time. And the old old old city center, which is famous for a special special kind of house that lines the old city center along the river. This is where all of the tanning and the the wall activity all of this was from the Middle Ages. And what they’ve done is they preserved most of these houses from the 1500s and 1600s that are right on the river on both sides. And there’s two bridges that are really nice that you walk across and you can see them and these houses are particular in terms of their architecture because they are three or four levels because these were like many of the houses in the Middle Ages, the commercial activity was down below. And then the people lived up above but because they were on the river because tanning and will activity required Washington, the wall and the water. The bottom level has two huge archway openings that actually open into the water. Oh, wow. So this is what they would do. And they would use this these openings to do this activity. Obviously, in the Middle Ages, I’m sure the water was pretty disgusting because of it. Yeah, to be pretty smelly, had to be pretty smelly. And then they, of course, lived in these houses. And it was very, very prosperous all through the Middle Ages. Now. I don’t know what it was like there in the 19th century. But now, they’ve Of course, restored all of these houses, and they’re all painted these very pretty pastel colors. So it’s very interesting to see it’s just an interesting year. It’s Yeah, it’s very interesting because most people It’s not a big tourist destination, no at all. But this old city center has a few things that are really, really interesting to see. And it’s very nice because it’s a very different perspective of life in France, you know, compared to the the little villages that are all on everybody’s tourist lists and things like that. Yeah. And then the other thing is, besides that is that it is famous for a museum. And this is called the it’s the museum. Oh, named after the Spanish painter. Yeah, go. Yeah. And the museum, which is very big, is in good. Half of the old bishops palace. There’s a Bishop’s garden which is in front of it, which is this magnificent French garden, you know, with with the geometric forms and things like that. It’s beautiful. Well, very well taken care of. And what’s interesting about the museum is that it was a it was a local Art Museum with I think a part of it that was ethnological, you know, with folk things and things like that. And then in the 1840s, a local, very wealthy person donated his entire collection to the museum. And in his collection, he had a bunch of paintings by Goya, and now Gloria Gloria took refuge in France during the Napoleonic Wars,


He actually went to Bordeaux, okay, which is where he died. And because he lived in France, the last few years of his life, he left a huge part of his collection to people in France, how this particular man and I’m looking for his name because I wrote it down somewhere. How this particular man his name was bleeding ki bola.

Be RIGUIBOULE bola. Yeah.

Mr. Bry bow. Wow. Wow. I guess you know,

Lucas? Lucas?

Okay, I’m letting you just explain what that is. Okay. So what happened was that he this Mr. Really booed when he died he left his entire collection of painting to the museum.

That’s very nice. Thank you, sir.

So it is outside of Spain and outside of the move, the largest collection of paintings and engravings by Goya anywhere. There were two entire sets of his engraving series which were about war. They’re very impressive. There are two rooms Filled with them the entire series and beautiful paintings. There are some paintings by valid squares 17th century very, very, very important Spanish artists and another important artist from that time period named Muriel. Muriel. And so in other Spanish Yeah. And I so in this little small medium sized city of Casco we have outside of the loop, the largest collection of Spanish art in France. Wow. That’s, that’s stunning. It’s stunning. And the paintings are gorgeous. And it’s really a lovely museum. It’s not a huge Museum, but it’s very impressive. And the all of these series of engravings by Guy are, you know, he’s, he was very marked, very traumatized by the Napoleonic Wars. And he did these series of engravings about war that are really to this day, extremely powerful. These are just small little black and white engravings, but they have the entire series of them there. The museum is really a nice museum. So it’s a really outside of a two or three other cities. It’s a surprising museum because its specialty, besides having some French art is in fact, the Spanish Spanish art. And oh, pretty close to Spain, you know, close to Spain, you know. And until you have the museum, you have these beautiful French gardens in front of them. It all this is very close. The park where the old houses are, it’s just a few minutes away by foot. It’s actually called the Venice of the South. I mean, I think it’s a little bit of an exaggeration because it doesn’t have canals. It just has the basic River.

Nice. I just looked at it.

Yeah, it is. I should try to stop there again. I should stop here again. Yeah. And then of course, we have to just mention a couple of words about john john is the casket is the is where john Joyce was born, and where he he he became a deputy and the genre is his major political hero, especially in the south, and southwest, and everywhere, and everywhere. JOHN dress was a brilliant it the story of his life is actually amazing. He was a brilliant, brilliant young students and his family was actually fairly modest, you know, and he went off to study in first I think it was interiors and then in Paris, and he but he was very, very influenced by the the the work and the conditions of the workers in the region around where castle isn’t in the time because there were mines, there were coal mines, there were lots and mines there were lots of different the textile activity. And he was very quickly politicized. I really don’t know what made him politicize that way. But he became very politicized and he was a champion of workers causes and, and he became a member of the, at the end of the 19th century of the socialist Party. And he created he was also a journalist, and he wrote for newspapers. And he was very, very influential. He was a brilliant orator. He was a brilliant speaker. And he was extremely persuasive in his speech, and he had a lot of enemies. And unfortunately for him, he was he was also one of the proponents and signed and was one of the people responsible for the law in France of 1904, which was five, which is separation of church and church and state. He was very much a Republican, which meant someone for a republic as opposed to a monarchy. Yeah, yeah. And not the American sense of Republican. Yeah. And, and he was also a pacifist. Yeah. He believed in, you know, he believed in strikes for the miners of trying to get them better wages, trying to give them better working conditions, but he was not a bellicose person. And as The world was fomenting to enter into World War One. He wrote a series of articles about how there should not be a war and certainly France should not enter World War One. And after publishing these articles, which were rather aggressive in their statements about how there should not be a war, unfortunately, in 1914, sitting in a cafe in Paris, he was assassinated. Yeah. And he was assassinated because of his political position. And he has since become a major hero.

Yeah, I think he’s become a martyr to the cause of workers rights and better conditions working conditions for people overall, and he’s well loved. I mean, you can’t there. I’m not sure if my tiny village doesn’t have a original job. Yeah, it might. You might, I might.

I know. I mean, tues has a high school. It’s named after him. Major alley way that’s named after that every city has something

either major Plaza or Boulevard or, and if it’s a village, you might have a small, smaller thing but it he’s remembered very fondly all over the country. And if I’m not mistaken, he’s buried in mo mark.

I don’t know Payless shoes. I think that’s what I read. Just possible. It’s very poised.

But I don’t remember seeing him in any way. No, I

think he is in MoMA. But, you know, he probably would have become president of France if he hadn’t been assassinated. And he’s someone who has had a huge influence. And you’re right. He is a major hero of the

Yeah, I think he’s someone that people look up to, even to this day for, for workers rights, right. You know, because he, I mean, he was a man of his time, even in America back then. If you think about The labor movement was quite healthy. It was healthy. It was important. It was important mattered. And in France even more so. Right,

exactly. And of course, you know, we’re talking about, I mean, we talked today about the conditions of workers and minds and things like that, but nothing compared to what it was in those days. Well,

and sometimes we hear about mine accidents in China and places like that. Yeah, it sounds like they still have a long way to go to make it safer to work in mines. In some countries. Of course, in France, we don’t have any left. I don’t think we don’t have world minds. And nowhere, None. Zero. We have some that you can visit, right? I believe if I’m not mistaken. So you can

the last ones were closed down since I’ve lived here in France. So last time, yeah. But But you know, and if you read any of what he wrote, he was a brilliant writer. So he was he must have been very charismatic person. Yeah. You know, I was just one of those people. There are people like that, you know, they

just use one of these larger than life kind of person. I mean, it’s like Victor Hugo and Jojo is right. You know, these are the ones that come to mind even if you

He was also involved in the jack Hughes and that whole life is affair. In fact, I just saw a French movie about the Victor Hugo and his relationship, his friendship with the painter Paul says that it’s a whole big deal because they were childhood friends and their story together is very complicated. But Victor Hugo was also very much like Joshua, someone who defended the workers was a Republican in that sense of the Republican, you know, and I don’t know if they knew each other because Hugo is a little bit older know that. Well, you know, he Victor Hugo died in 1902. Okay. And I would, it would be interesting to know if they ever met

Yeah. something to look at.

Yeah, something to look up. Yeah, because when john lewis was killed, he was not that old. I think. He was in his 40s, late 40s or something like that, you know? So anyway so so so that’s why the visit to casket is a bit more cultural.

Yeah. Oh definitely strong French cultural roots like you know, it’s it’s real France it’s not this is not a manufacturers crap that right will sell you

in there is a small Jewish Museum in the city center, okay. So you know for people who are interested in that kind of political history and everything, it’s very nice to visit. It’s very small. It’s just the kind of thing where you get to see examples of his writing and I think items from his family life and things like that, but it’s really quite interesting. So So we’ve gone to the track and then we’ve stopped and cast and maybe had lunch and cash them taking the time to visit the museum, you know, and from here, we’re going to finish basically the rest of The day out of doors.

So east of Casta only 11 kilometers

east of Cass I think of what you’re going to say. I can’t think of it right now. I mean, I know there’s a natural park there but

well, we’re going to go into the area called the stove.

rec dog.

I love it there. And me who’s not a very, very, very big person for climbing and hiking. I love this place. It’s, it is part of a big, larger kind of I don’t even know if it’s considered to be a regional park or what, but it’s a geological region that’s famous for its granite formations. It is the southwestern part of the massive song pod, which is, you know, the oldest mountains in France and Unlike further north where they become volcanic, this is the area that is famous for its granite. And just like in the forest of Blow,

Blow, Blow Hello.

Which is famous for having huge rock formations and that you can scramble on and that you can hike around. This adobo is like that. So this is the thing about this job.

It’s granite though it’s

BB but and so this is the thing. It’s got pathways. It there are. It’s a region that is like a big, big, big national park. Right. There are two or three entrances. One of them is called the vows a plateau. Valley separate. Yeah, that’s where the major tourist offices is called Sonoma Valley. It’s a plateau. Okay. And you can get a brochure there that gives you an indication of There are bike trails, there are hiking trails, there are places that have what are called jumbles, which is you know these formations of granite that have,

like they look like big rocks that have been placed

exactly each other. And a lot of them because of their forms have been given names because they remind me of a hand or an animal or this and that. And this is not, it’s but it’s in forest. So it’s shady. So if you’re doing any of this is a day you’re doing for instance, when it’s hot out, you go into this area at the place where you go advance a plateau. If I remember correctly, there is at least a cafe if I might even be a little restaurant where you can get a snack. There’s a campground right nearby, there’s more than one entrance but this is the the main entrance, you take the departmental 30 basically to get there and there are 15 different sites to visit that have names and you just It’s great for kids. Yeah, it’s great for kids. It’s great for you can if you have bikes, and you’ve already done with your history and culture for the day, you know, you’ve had enough. This is a great place there because there are some of these trails that are set up for bikes and others where it’s just scrambling. Hopefully you can rent a bike nearby, you may be able to rent a bike nearby look, you can find there’s a there’s an eco museum that gives a basically a history of the formations of the rocks. Mm hmm. There are picnic tables everywhere. Mm hmm. It’s lovely. Yeah, it’s, it’s really, it’s the kind of forest I like that is it’s not too dense. It’s a mix of deciduous and evergreen type forest. So it’s not I don’t like very dense wet forest that kind of creeps me out. I don’t know why it always has been. But I love this one because you walk around and all of a sudden you see these formations and you can and they’re easy for Someone like me I’m telling you if it’s easy for me it means it’s easy you know to scramble on to walk around Of course you wearing shoes that are you know, right right decent shoes for this kind of but it’s not like no no not difficult yeah zero level difficulty as far as I’m concerned and then again

so long as you have average mobility Yeah, exactly, you know,

and and you can just take a short walk into the area and then just find a place to sit or you can do these trails which circle around and come back out. So you have an option but it is very special because there aren’t that many regions particularly in the south and southwest of France that have granted huh? And she just dropped his drop my headphones

I’m always teasing her that her headphones are not on

she says she can’t hear me I’m like this cuz you are gone. I’m not on your.

This is granted that is also used for making headstones which of course is principal activity. for granted the quarry but this is a beautiful it’s actually famous because of the quality of the granite and it’s beautiful. It’s this kind of these Gray’s. Yeah.

So I’m going to look and see if I can find some bikes around there because this the end of the summer we have relatives visiting and I’m looking I’m looking for I want us to go between here and into the god the movie. Yeah. But I don’t want to go the normal route but I’ve done a million times right. So I might go north a bit can go

there afterwards. It’s beautiful where you go from the Cedar Point and you find the road that goes into the forest and up into the beginning of the mountains. And you go to the moon, lacuna, Morocco know and it’s gorgeous and it’s absolutely gorgeous and it’s Shaku to be country Annie.

That’s what I mean. Because especially the more galleries

my husband will be very happy. It’s it’s, it’s beautiful.

It’s not. It’s not Mediterranean, you know, but it’s a very different world than the places we’ve been to in the JR. Soren now. Yeah. And And interestingly, it’s a place I you really like it, of course you don’t go on a rainy day. I mean, you don’t want to have to deal with slippery rocks on rainy day, but it’s just wonderful. And it’s kind of it’s a relief to have a change like that, you know, to go to a place that’s, that’s, that’s so interesting. And the Eco museum is really interesting. I don’t know, I’m really ignorant of everything related to the formation of the earth and you know, that kind of stuff. So it’s interesting to get just some simple explanations, right? You have an idea of what happened,

right? These things

show I’m pretty sure because it’s similar to upstate New York, it’s like you have these huge, huge rocks that are made out of granite and boulders that have moved and the part of it is because of glacial activity. But but it’s it’s that high up. I mean, it’s only I’m not even sure of the altitude, but it’s probably just a couple of hundred meters in altitude. So it’s not like you’re in

sounds like fun, especially with people that have kids. Yeah, you could easily I think kids would enjoy that.

Kids with kids love it. No, it’s a real place for them to sort of run around scrambling. It’s it’s very much a family kind of thing to do. If you have you know, kids with you. I’m away from the PlayStation. Exactly getting away from the PlayStation and after a lot of parents these days and whining about being in a city and going to a museum and you know, wherever going to a village I mean, this is just where they can cut loose. And this also I just think

it’s not big and dangerous. I know it’s not like

no, no, no, no, right? Because

there are places where like When we mentioned the places in the areas like they could actually fall off the cliff and

hurt themselves, like walk beside or Yeah, you have to be careful.

Right, right. But this one, it’s, I mean, they’re big rocks, they might fall off the big rock to be

right. It’s just, I mean, if you look at the site, you see pictures of kids everywhere, you know, it’s really, it’s really interesting. And it’s just, and then there’s one other thing, the which is, because you know me, so we have to bring it back to a little bit of history. The cast cloud was a major Protestant stronghold during the war of religion. I, as I mentioned earlier, I’m not sure why it became that way. But it was a very important city. And this is where talking to the 16th century, the 1500s, and it was almost exclusively a Protestant city. So the war religion was very bloody. It was really a civil war, and a lot of the Protestant families when things started turning badly went into hiding in the forest in the massive salt palace. So they went east into this adobo and further into the forest and the hills in this area. And two things. One is that they became what are known as gentleman glass makers. Because one of the things that they could do, because they’re all these small running rivers in this area was learned to be glass blowers and live in the forest and do things like that. And so this area has besides an ego Museum, a museum Protestantism, which is interesting, because aside from anything that’s connected to the actual culture, you know, the actual religion, it talks about the war religions and how these Protestants who did not convert back to Catholics is because of Catholicism, which a lot of them actually did went into this region. So the Don’t left alone that will be left alone. And and that is why if you go further east and you get to more black own, it’s very, very important in the history of Protestantism in France, and then eventually takes you further east to the say then which was entirely and still is largely Protestant. Mm hmm. So so it’s very interesting because not only is it different from a nature point of view, but it’s also in some interesting ways you know, connected to the ins and outs of the history of

religion in France.

So this is our day

and then when you had to back back unless you’re like me and you’re making your way east,

Yes, exactly. Two and if you’re making your way east, then you you have little towns along the way that have you will, there are campgrounds, many in this region, but camping they’re also little villages that have nice little obey, and just mentioned something because we don’t really talk about things in This is just because I was thinking about this the other day there’s a series of little hotels with a label called luxury difference. The definition of a luxury difference and they’re rated two star three Star Force star so some of them are four star which means they usually have a pool and other amenities like that. But by definition, they’re small. Usually never more than 25 rooms. And they have a restaurant and the restaurant is always a good restaurant. Yeah. And in my travels around France I have used them consistently or almost consistently and I love them hmm and some of them there’s a book you can get or you can go online and look at them and in this area when you go into this area after this you do upon going towards like more left corner

Yeah, there’s no not a big cities there are no there aren’t it?

You’re not going to find the chain hotels.

So you’ve what you do is you find there are these little town Really more villages. And sometimes they’re not in the village itself. There’s something just in the countryside. But this is a these are nice places to find a room and you know that if you have a big difference that you will also have a very nice little restaurant. So it’s a kind of nice thing to have in mind if you’re searching for something really

helped me organize my trip now

know the Yes. And I haven’t yet been to show me to see the reproduction. So I have

to do that too. Yeah, we want to go late August, late August, early September late August is good because it will be less crowded. Yeah, yes, people will head with just because their daughters working through the summer so

And my guess is that it’s probably not quite as busy but almost as busy as Lascaux now because now they’ve made this reproduction. So yeah, but and you have to reserve ahead of time. Yeah, yeah. But it’s a very interesting region. And it’s one that’s very beautiful and varied and much less well known.

Yeah, this is part of France where you don’t see a lot of American visitors. French visitors. French fries. Yeah, French people love it. Right. But American visitors not so much. Maybe some English people want maybe, maybe Yeah, maybe. But maybe an Ozzy or two minutes lost. Maybe.

Maybe you never know. Looking for the kangaroos. They won’t find any. Unless there’s, unless there’s a zoo.

Yeah, kangaroos are so lazy. I was at the zoo. In Paris, you know, the zoo. Yeah. And they have an outdoor seeing for kangaroos. And they have whole families of kangaroos. And they just lie there, man. Oh, yeah. I’m sure in nature. They’re not like I

don’t think in nature. They’re like that. Yeah, they do. A lot of it was not that vaping around, you know,

but it was very hot that day. Yeah. I don’t think it was too. Yeah, yeah. It was drained from scratch the dirt and find the cool

port, maybe. Yeah, I know. Anyway,

so here’s our day in the tar. Thank you so much. At least

sounds wonderful. Wonderful.

All right.

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Categories: Day -Trips from Toulouse, Off the Beaten Track in France, Toulouse Area