samedi 20 juin 2009

Walk Home

So after complaining about my boring old walk home, I thought I'd illustrate it--at least the pretty part.

From the bus station, I walk behind a bunch of modern apartment buildings, then up through my ritzy shopping plaza (sorry, no pictures) and around the Rotonde.

Today we're taking a quick detour down the Cours Mirabeau, the main drag. On one side, we have old mansions.

On the other side, cafés.

And down the middle of the street are old fountains. I've heard that there was some law that they couldn't be blocked or destroyed because shepherds used them as they brought their flocks through during seasonal migrations. Now the only ones drinking out of them are puppies and pigeons. Several are thermal sources and grow plants year round!

Here we are at Monoprix, a department and grocery store. Tonight's dinner: frozen moussaka and salad, both found in the Monoprix basement. We'll also pick up a box of honey nut cheerios, which are just honey wheat cheerios here.

After we leave Monoprix and the Cours Mirabeau, we're on single-lane pedestrian streets. This means we are more likely to get run over by cars and/or motor scooters.

We'll meander past the house that found a way to compensate for the fact that the street cut through the corner of the property. It's next to the Natural History Museum.

By the way, we just walked past the store "L'Occitan en Provence." It's really from Provence. So is this great jewelry store, Saoya en Provence. Josh got my Christmas present there this year, and my brother bought his fiancée something there, too.

As we walk up the street, let's try to peek in open doors of old mansions. This one, which we've nicknamed "the puffy door" is always closed.

But sometimes the Aix-en-Provence city history museum is open.

We'll pass the boulangerie and try to ignore the tartes in the window.

My feet are getting tired! Now you see why I like to change my route--this is a long walk. Once we see the clock tower of town hall, we know we're getting close, though.

We go under the clock tower's arch:

And then we're on my street. Pretty soon we're at the place in front of the cathedral.

And then. . . Home!

jeudi 18 juin 2009


Detours always tempt me on the walk home. The walk home (uphill) seems shorter if I'm passing new things as I go. Plus, now that it's hot, I take as many detours through air-conditioned stores as I can, or I alter my path to stay in the shade as long as possible. I think this drives Josh nuts.

Today's detour turned into an errand, (buying handmade soaps at the market) and then led me past my favorite street musician. Here's a video I took of him playing by town hall and the library (and the dreaming cat store). You'll note at the end of the video he realizes I'm recording him. Today I made up for it and doubled the contents of his coffee can, so I think we're friends again.

By the way, on one of my recent side trips into air conditioning, I came across Marylin Monroe votive candles at this store, which also features her on a coffee table:

dimanche 14 juin 2009

Our Apartment

I can't really type because I sliced open a finger on a can of haricots verts, but before I put my finger out of action, I made this collage of photos taken in our apartment. I don't know why it keeps uploading without the yellow. Maybe our apartment has been doing drugs while we've been at work.

lundi 1 juin 2009

Dogs, Babies, and Dreaming Cats

The weather here is BEEEE-yu-tee-ful and the sunlight on the ochre-colored buildings is gorgeous. Everyone is out enjoying the sunshine as usual. Lots of dogs and babies here in Aix. LOTS OF DOGS AND BABIES. On my walk down to town center the other day, I spent most of the time behind a man walking three little dogs. They were all about the same size and wagged their tails and bounced along together like some kind of circus act or cheerleading squad. On our way down toward the post office, we passed at least four or five toddlers in strollers--all of whom turned around to watch the dogs go by.

Here he goes. . .

And here's a better shot.

He's walking past a great little gift shop, Le Chat Rêveur, The Dreaming Cat. Yes, that's a goat in the window.

Le Chat Rêveur sells fun things like post cards and funny placemats and clocks and whiteboards, all with little comics and slogans that seem much funnier in French than they would in English. I always want to buy people presents there, but I can never pick just one thing to get.