One of the wonderful things about traveling in the fall is the smell of fallen leaves and wood smoke from fireplaces.
After our long(ish) drive from Amboise, we once more had to take our car through ancient gates and down narrow roads full of pedestrians to get to our new “home” in Rocamadour. As we approached the first gate, where the main road turned sharply to the left, Michael said, “surely we don’t go through the gate.” When I told him that we did, he was unnerved but carried on and we managed to avoid all the wandering pilgrims and make it through three other gates before finding our house, which is located just before the last gate.
The house is charming and a fire was burning in the fireplace to greet us. Very welcoming, as were the owners and after a bit of a kerfluffle over just how long we planned on staying (we said four days and they thought two . . . even though we had paid for a full week), all was resolved to our satisfaction and we moved in.
What a charming village this is. No one seems to know how or why it became a point on the big pilgramage route but it did and it is beautiful. It just emerges out of the cliffs. We climbed the stairs up to the sanctuary and then up to the chateau but we didn’t have exact change for the machine to let us wander the ramparts. Michael was SO happy about that! And, we got a pretty good sense of the place without the rampart experience.
We have found a tiny, organic market just below the last gate and have gone over there four or five times in the two days we have been here. The young man who helps us is so darned cute. His English is just about as good as my French but we manage perfectly. We have been the beneficiaries of two different samples of local cheese . . . both delicious . . . and have had to go back to buy more. Today, as I was picking up two more little rounds of the local goat cheese, we managed to have a sort of conversation about what Michael and I had seen today. These exchanges are what make my travels so enjoyable to me.