After a few days visiting friends at their house by the Midi canal, and others in the Aveyron region, I am left with fond memories of wining, dining and chatting alfresco in the intense autumn sunshine, of wandering round Narbonne, long walks along the canal, strolling round local villages and viewing the new sights; the break has given me plenty of inspiration from which to feed.
Funnily enough this time last year we were actually boating on the Oxford canal in a narrowboat, these are the wider boats of the midi canal, les peniches.
“Salt dunes” near Gruissan, a fishing village between 2 lagoons, we saw flamingos as well as salt
Minerve, the ancient Cathar village at the top of the gorge of the river Cesse.
The cave below Minerve, which will forever remind me of the raging toothache I was suffering from, I felt I had descended into the depths of my tooth cavity. A recent discussion with Judith has rekindled an old interest in Haiku poetry, thus I was inspired to write this Haiku poem, not the best, but it conveys my memories of that day, which ended going to urgence in the local hospital! ….called Below Minerve:
Yawning sunlit gorge
writhes downward through glare then gloom:
cavern throbs with cairns.
(I have since written a few more, which I will post later, I think I am hooked on Haiku, in fact, so much so that I am thinking of coupling them with paintings)
These cairns are built by any visitors who happen by, they give this cathedral-like space a feeling of spirituality
and a couple of sketches:
everything we visited reminded me of decaying teeth! Even the dolmen encircled by parasol trees, surrounded by wild-thyme-covered hills: