Tuesday, April 26, 2016

St. Gilles, Les Mejanes, and other spots in the Camargue

Looking for birds.
We spent the day in the Camargue: that is, the delta of the Rhone River. It's a fine spot for seeing birds, including some that are migrating now and some that are nesting. Agriculture here includes raising the famous black bulls, white horses, and quite a bit of rice-growing. Small cities and villages here date from early times, with Roman and Medieval ruins as well as some well-preserved historic structures. We're spending a week seeing and learning.

Storks make a clicking noise with their beaks.
A stilt in the reeds.
A just-fledged baby long-tailed tit. Saturday our guide saw this family still in their nest.

I also enjoyed the wild flowers, especially irises.

A winchat.
A wryneck, a kind of woodpecker, that our guide says must have just crossed the Mediterranean in migration last night.

A turtle dove -- once very common they are now
more and more endangered.

Lunch in a village called Les Mejanes

Camargue salad has the same ingredients as Salade Nicoise, but with rice mixed into the tuna.
One of the other birdwatchers had a croque monsieur.
Another day, another tart au citron, this one garnished with an almond wafer and a tiny glass of sorbet.
The abbey church at St. Gilles was a famous pilgrimage site, now in poor shape.
We had a fascinating lecture about the iconography.
This is a devil waiting to tempt Cain to kill Abel.
Behind what's left of the church is the ruin of the choir and ambulatory,
including just one tower with a famous winding staircase inside.

1 comment:

Roz . Russell said...

Hi Mae, Lovely to see you on my blog http://france-ourlifeinfrance.blogspot.fr/ It is so nice to see a fellow Francophile enjoying this beautiful country, I love the way the French present their food even in the most rural little restaurant it is the same and of the same standard, I almost never want to disrupt it but always take a photo