Friday, 16 August 2013

Relaxing in Frenchie France.

Gorgeous shapes in the market.

I am staying with my friends Sue and John who live in a very quiet and rural area of the Charente Maritime in France.  Sue and I were at art college together - THIRTY EIGHT years ago! How can it be that long? I try to get over here at least once a year. They are very good friends and know me VERY well. 

It has been gloriously warm with clear blue skies - just fabulous. It has been wonderful to have the time just to  - be. Does that make sense? We have been quite social with a barbecue yesterday and a big gathering tonight. I will flying back home tomorrow.

 One of the local fields of sunflowers.

Taking the dog for walks is a great opportunity to take loads of photos. The sunflowers are nearly over now, just the smaller, secondary flowers are blooming - but they are still very colourful - beautiful against the blue sky.

 I love looking at the entrances to buildings and gardens - it is fun to imagine what might be beyond the gates and doors.

 The textures, shapes and colours are always very attractive.

And of course there is the food - lots of local produce - I loved the shape of this bread  . . .

One of the reasons I was so keen to come to France this week was that the band John also known as Culli, plays in, was doing a gig on Wednesday night. They are a fantastic band and can be hired for weddings and parties etc. The band is called the Billy Whizz Band. If you live in the Charente area and need a good dance band I can't recommend them highly enough -

The boys belting out a Dire Straits number.

 Mal, John (Culli)  and J.L. on drums have fun during a break.
 This lady was great fun - she thoroughly enjoyed listening to the boys play, tapping her feet and nodding her head in time to the music - she danced several times during the night. The band attracts all ages  . . . .

Sue and Johns court yard garden is beautiful. It is a relaxing area to sit and read, or knit or crochet.
Sue runs a B & B as well as very successful knitting and crochet holidays.   
Sue's business has gone from strength to strength with many visitors from all over Europe enjoying her hospitality and courses. Sue and John are marvelous hosts and fantastic cooks . . .  and the of course the wine flows freely!!!

 Delicious grapes growing on the vine that grows over the pergola creating a shady place to eat. It gets very hot here in the summer.

There are many fabulous shapes and colours around the garden - I must bring some drawing kit with me next time - these forms are crying out to be drawn.


 While I am writing this post, Sue, John and two friends are getting ready for their gallery's open day on Sunday. It is a popular local event. The smells coming from the kitchen are very tempting. Sue has been baking all morning. The visitors to the gallery won't know which cake to choose to have with their teas and coffees.

I am getting on with a little bit of work while everyone else is busy outside - there are far worse places to work. I will post more about the open day on Saturday.

I do so love it here - I am sooooo well looked after  . . . . x


Hello Jill and Diana.



  1. Looks lovely and relaxing, back from sailing the fjords so am relaxed too xx

    1. It is – can’t wait to see your photos – it sounds like a fabulous trip. Whilst I have been relaxing, am now hammering away at the captions and changes to text for the book. Talk soon, love to you both, x x x x

  2. Not far from me then Kim - I am in the Dordogne and all your pictures are looking very familiar!! isn't the weather just brilliant . Enjoy the rest of your stay.

    1. Hi Lin,
      Yes the weather is just gorgeous, I really don't want to go home tomorrow.
      It may be too far for you to travel - Sue has an Open Studio here on Sunday - 10am - 4pm. 16 rue de la Verderie, 17770 Brizambourg. There will paintings, wood turning, Kilims, photography, furniture and textiles.
      And of course - tea and cake!!!

      if you fancy coming and need directions - ring Sue on 05 46 94 08 53.

      x x x x