Monday, November 09, 2009

The Dordogne

Three hours west of Lyon by train I picked up another car and arrived in the Dordogne départment of France in the full of Autumn.  I haven't had a Northern Autumn in over ten years, and the Périgord Noir county and the Vézère Valley is wooded with oak forests.  The countryside is orange, brown, yellow and red and threaded with bermed, winding roads, perfect for driving a stick shift.  I'm soon slaloming through falling showers of oak leaves.  I've driven into my Windows desktop wallpaper.

It is also home to the medieval city of Sarlat-la-Canéda, a preserved and restored living representation of 14th-century France.  I based myself in an apartment here for a week.  A few days later Mai Li arrived to besiege chateaux, spelunk caves, and indulge in fois gras and confit du canard before idling away the last week of this odyssey in Paris.

The day Mai Li arrived, it rained for the first time in the region for six months.  Scattered Autumn showers pestered every day thereafter, but were a cakewalk after the Adriatic vortex.

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