Tuesday, April 08, 2014

G - Gers


You are forewarned that this will be a long post photo-wise. There is just so much to see in the Gers  region of France, I don't know where to begin. It's situated west of Toulouse in gorgeous rolling hill country where sunflowers are a major crop. I like it for the landscape, the history, and, of course, the food! We took a four day weekend and traveled all over with my parents in law, celebrating my mother in law's birthday, and the wonderful kindred spirit we four share. We visited a distillery for Armagnac, where we spent too much money, the Abbey Flaran which I wrote about for A in this blogging challenge, a double "Ecluse" a lock on the canal, roman villa ruins, La Romieu, a town not only dedicated to cats, but it sports the grand Cloister of La Romieu (which is on the on the pilgrimage route to St-Jacques de Compostelle), and a woad factory in Lectoure where everything is organic and made by hand (we again spent too much money!). We stayed in a wonderful hotel, La Ferme de Flaran, ate wonderful food, saw lots of old "moulin" windmills, and picturesque villages like Cologne. Not to mention visiting friends and a grand restored Château de La Réole, which you will read about in my "R" post...
The hat says it all...!

The J. Damblat distillery and vineyards entrance

The owner and his wares

Some vineyards neighboring the roman ruins
One of the first mosaics you see when you enter the "Villa Romaine de Seviac" a very well maintained roman villa ruin

These skeletons were found during one of the numerous excavations of this site. The are post date the roman ruins, but were found together like this and are nick-named Romeo and Juliet, because they are male and female and have their arms around each other.

We aren't so romantic in this shot!
Beware of the trees! Seriously, departments are starting to take down the trees because drivers going too fast hit them and die. It's amazing what some people will do. In this area where they don't want to sacrifice the trees, they put up warning signs, as if the trees might jump out at you!
Who wouldn't want to keep these?
A monument (you find them everywhere) to the fallen local Resistance Fighters of WWII.

Lovely pink flowers sprinkled along the way. If you want more detail, click on the photo to make it bigger.

Read the English here... LOL!

On the left is the Pontoon one can't "harm."

Our hotel, La Ferme de Flaran, an old farmhouse turned into hotel. Definitely recommend this one.


One side of the double "ecluse" the lock we found in the middle of nowhere. My husband gives you the scale...
Enceinte Fortifiee de Larrenssingle

Larrenssingle, a village set inside this fort is an amazingly beautiful place to visit. Its inhabitants have taken the ruins and turned them in to modern apartments/homes without sacrificing the beauty or architecture of the ruins. I would love to return here and spend more time.

The old church right in the middle of the fortifications is basically a ruin itself and isn't used. You really should visit the link on the first of these three photos to get a true idea of what Larrenssingle looks like as a whole.

Angeline of the cats, a portrayal of her looking like her beloved pets in the village of La Romieu. The link is in the paragraph at the beginning of this very long post.

Cat statues are ALL over this town! Quite unique.

There is a matching one of this one with the head of the cat peeking out!

The pigeons aren't bothered by all the cats.

The Cloister of La Romieu courtyard

The Cloister of La Romieu exterior

Customizing the ruins to accommodate the new tenants
Another monument to local fallen Resistance Fighters

A pretty doorway

So many "moulin" windmills along the way...

A freshly plowed sunflower field. Sadly, this visit was off season for seeing the blankets of yellow.

Lectoure from a distance

The "Woad Factory" in Lectoure, a lovely place. They give tours and lectures and have a shop.

For you "moto" or Beemer fans... This is the country to "bike" in!

Moulin de Rochegude

Another moulin along the way

The "Marché" in the middle of Cologne

Flowers everywhere and all kinds of architecture in Cologne.

Region Midi-Pyrénées flag with the Croix Occitane

In case you forget which country you're in...Notice the blue of the shutters typical in the Midi-Pyrenees area.

Where the new meets the old. Mais oui! Foosball, or as the french call it, "Babyfoot."

The wash house, the "Lavoir." These can be found in almost every small village and if there is a river, it is always literally on the river...

This is a Firetruck "French" size, with a French Fireman "pompier" giving it a clean.


13 comments:

  1. So much history. The cat statues are rather odd. Love seeing all these great photos except the page takes so long to load in my computer. Hopefully I can find a way to boost my speed someday or better yet get a bigger more powerful computer.

    Lee
    A Faraway View
    An A to Z Co-host blog

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    1. Sorry about the overload on your computer Arlee! That's why I put the warning up first, thinking there might be problems for some with so many photos! The cat statues were almost spooky, there were so many of them!

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  2. I love the cat statues being all over the town. Gers looks like a beautiful area with its ancient architecture and tree-lined avenues :)
    Sophie
    Sophie's Thoughts & Fumbles - A to Z Ghosts
    Fantasy Boys XXX - A to Z Drabblerotic

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    1. I know, right? I so love France and all it has to see... I'm really enjoying your blog!

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  3. Hi Lisa - what an amazing four days you had - and yes I'd like to tag along .. or perhaps double my money and spend 8 days looking around ... I love the cats in La Romieu ... then the Woad factory .. that sounds fascinating .. and I loved the architecture of Cologne .. you are really tempting me with so many areas of France ...

    Beautiful photos too .. so we get an overall picture of the area ... and the 'ways' that the French still covet - the Lavoir, their castles, their small towns .. wonderful Gers ... cheers Hilary

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    1. Thanks Hilary! I'm really enjoying your blog posts as well and love to go there first thing in the morning!

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  4. What great photos. They warn for trees? Seriously? :) Love the cat statues and the architecture. Armagnac - yum.
    Tasha
    Tasha's Thinkings - AtoZ (Vampires)
    FB3X - AtoZ (Erotic Drabbles)

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    1. Yep, warning about trees, go figure! Cat lovers would adore Le Romieu!

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  5. The mosaic is so cool. Mais, les chats?!?!

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  6. Some really rich photos! I would have so much fun on those roads with my little sports car. Beware the trees? That is so funny,
    Did you bring home any wine from the vineyard?

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  7. Oh my, I am jealous and wish to be in the places of your photos.

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  8. Wow Lisa,

    Isn't this cute? It wasn't long enough enough for me and the pictures were captivating. I look forward to visiting such an cool little city someday
    http://myeverydaypersonal.blogspot.be/

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  9. I love all the cats, perhaps if I build myself a city or castle someday, I will add my own cat statues all over!

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