strapped in

My people are brave. Nelson decided before our trip, that he wanted to rent a car here in Aix so that we could see the countryside. I haven’t the nerve to drive in a city that I barely parle the language, much less read it. But yesterday, we went down to the Hertz rental car place and we drove away with a Chevy (of all things) Matize. So Harold and I got to see some lavender fields… as well as some sunflower fields, olive groves and wine grape vineyards as well!

We started out driving just up the hill from Aix where we’d seen an advertisement for an Absinthe distillery. Being fans of Pastis and absinthe, we set out to a place that distills the stuff…. Liquoristerie de Provence. They sold all kinds of products associated with l’absinthe and herbes and such, including a liquor made from lemon verbena, which we came away with. Harold found the video on the making of absinthe fascinating. He’s been reading over my shoulder the book I bought on the subject. There are lots of illustrations along with the histoire d’absinthe.

From there on, we wound our way around the Lower Luberon Mountains, up tight narrow roads and past sheer cliffs overlooking fields of wine grapes, sunflowers, and lavender. We stopped along side the road at a sincere lavender patch… and Harold was beside himself… you can see the bees all around and hear the soft hum.

Harold has been enjoying the cafes here around Aix. Here we are at the Bastide du Cours (on Cours Mirabeau). It has misters (as in mist/water) that are quite refreshing. The brown thing in the foreground is some art that we purchased from a fine fellow, Lionel Borla (from Marseille) whose painting caught our eye at a street faire here on the Cours.

ready for a bite to eat...

among the purpley flowers

the absinthe machine... and Haroldabsinthe, we couldn't resist. Harold liked the Lemon Verbena Liquor though best.