Wild is the Wind

Bonjour mes amis!

Europe post number 2! Bam Shabam! I’m excited because this post has pictures from some of my favourite places on the entire trip.

We left off with a crazy party where half the pictures were in fact too crazy to put on the interwebs. Next up: The quintessential southern France event, the market.

It must be said that the day we adventured in to a lovely antique/delicious food market it was so windy that the stalls were practically blowing away. Sometimes we would escape the wind by scuttling into a random store or art gallery that we may not have otherwise stumbled upon. So thanks, wind. But also damn you, wind. It was chilly.

We walked around looking at food mostly, but also jewelry and crafty things and pretty stuff. But I think the best parts of the market were the tiny skinny pedestrian streets that the stalls were set up in. It was such a dainty little part of town. The gals and I split from the boys for a while for fear hat they would cramp our market style, but we met up for a group lunch that will go down in history. I will only tell you this: Danica’s salad contained a secret ingredient. Which was alive.

After the market, we were lead up a mountain through narrow, dusty roads (meaning the road was barely big enough for our car, one side of the road ended with a cliff and the road was actually intended for two-way traffic) and we ended up in a very unique and interesting town called Rousillon which was named that because it’s red. Literally, the ground, the cliffs, the houses, the buildings, it’s all red. And very cool. It was there that Will introduced us to Lavender flavoured gelato. Most of us agreed that while it wasn’t necessarily bad, it reminded us too much of eating soap. But we appreciated Will’s effort. After we filled up on Rousillon’s street food (gelato and crepes) we then departed for YET another adventure.

Driving up the hill to Oppede-Les-Vieux, my energy level was around a 2. It had been a long and exciting day already and I was just wondering how long this next leg of our journey would take. As soon as we parked and started walking, I got my second wind. The more we climbed, the more I saw amazing views and little crumbling pieces of history. The village itself is still home to tons of people, many of whom are artists who sell their work in the little shops, so while you think you’re standing on the remains of an ancient chateau, you are also standing on someone’s lawn. The higher you get, any sense of village is left behind and you just walk up into the ruins of a chateau. There are no safety railings or staff on the very top of this windy peak, there’s just you, a crumbling castle and several fearless friends who scare the shit out of you by jumping effortlessly across death-defying drops to reach perfect photo-taking spots. Standing in the midst of a castle on the top of a towering hill surrounded by green forest was the closest I’ve ever felt to being Maid Marian. And that was wicked.

The little creature nestled inside one of Danica’s endive leaves.
The “mistral winds” of southern France which apparently come and go quickly and fiercely and help maintain the famous climate Provence is known for. We called it “menstrual winds” and then giggled a lot.

Oppede-Les-Vieux was one of the only places in the world I’ve ever been where I felt very unconfined. Sometimes you feel secluded or peaceful because there’s the illusion that you’re all by yourself, but most of the time you know it’s just a perception and 5 minutes away there are signs of civilization. In this place, you could look around you in all directions and see evidence that you were alone on top of a mountain.

Check back soon for Trip post # 3! And don’t forget that you can subscribe to my blog to get an email when the next post comes out! (Click button above that reads “click here for awesomeness” after writing your email address in the field above it. Thanks!!!)

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