20 Years From Now...

"20 YEARS FROM NOW," Mark Twain said, “you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than the ones you did.”THIS online journal is dedicated to our next 20 years!

Friday, 30 June 2017

Haut-de-Cagnes: Part 2

As mentioned in Haut-de-Cagnes: Part 1 this is our favourite medieval village in France. The reasons are many, but the main being it continues to be a vibrant community. Ordinary people work and live here. They raise their families here. Haut-de-Cagnes (literal translation is the 'top of Cagnes') is not simply a tourist destination filled with art galleries, shops and restaurants - although it does have a few of each including one or two hotels.  

If you missed part 1 of Haut-de-Cagnes, click HERE. Otherwise let's continue with part 2... When I first spotted the street (shown above and below) I realized it is a perfect example of what makes the Cote d'Azur so alluring.

The warm earth tones of the buildings, the brightly painted doors and shutters, the texture of the cobble stone and brick paths, the array of outdoor restaurant chairs and tables, the splashes of blooms and greenery and of course the incredible views of the Mediterranean Sea all of which add up to total perfection. A similar photo appears on the webpage of that hotel I mentioned, but more about it later.

This section of town boasts many restaurants and cafes, making it postcard picture perfect.

While the majority of buildings are predominately stone and brick there is no shortage of greenery. Vines cling to and snake along walls. Shrubs hug foundations.

Strategically placed pots or planters add a subtle dash of colour. 

We noticed lemons and oranges added to baskets. A natural bug repellent perhaps?

The plastic garbage containers in the next shot reminds one that Haut-de-Cagnes may be a medieval town, but it is very much a part of the modern world as well. The question arises as to who drags the bins to the curb on collection day or do the collectors search out the bins? Hmm...

I've always been fascinated with doors and these in Haut-de-Cagnes (26 in total) are as varied and unique as any I've seen. I can't help but wonder what is inside. 

Some of the buildings are drab and austere, yet there always seems to be an unexpected dash of colour here and there to brighten things up.

At the end of this street (below) one could either turn left or right, but what caught my attention was the lovely Juliette balcony.

Located sparingly around the town are narrow streets that are wide enough for vehicles. The inclines are steep and as one might expect parking is at a premium. 

Spinning around in the opposite direction of the above scene is the outer wall of the village.

The entrance allows for passage straight through for pedestrians and vehicles or to the right or left for pedestrians or those on motorcycles. 

The left side route...

Notice the original wood beam supports overhead as well as the red mini parked beside John. 

It would be fun to visit Haut-de-Cagnes in the evening. I'd love to see how the street lights illuminate the village.

While we were exploring the town we encountered a few locals. The majority were on foot, while others scooted past on motorcycles - expertly navigating the steps and staircases.

The thrill of exploring and becoming familiar with a location depends on being aware of the little details such as this niche outside the entrance to a private home.

Next stop this church built in 1762.

In both part 1 and part 2 of Haut-de-Cagnes I've included a short video. To both I added music not because I was feeling particularly creative, but to conceal the background sounds. In the first video (https://youtu.be/c09v-T2sKq8) children were shouting, laughing and playing. Recess time, perhaps? We couldn't see them, but we could certainly hear them! 

In the second video shot at the bottom of the staircase John is standing on above it was basically the same scenario, but instead of children it was the tap-tap-tap of workmen hammering away to repair a stone wall. While I can appreciate the importance of such a task, the noise did nothing for the video! In the final few frames of the video (below and at https://youtu.be/v3sTmb0yysI) you'll catch a glimpse of their ladders. The men, however, are high above the street and out of sight.

Stills taken from the same spot (more or less!)

Now, about that hotel I mentioned. We did not stay at Chateau le Cagnard, but we did saunter by it. The exterior of Chateau le Cagnard is the definition of understated elegance.

A click on the hotel link provides a view of the other side of the building as seen from outside the medieval village and it's spectacular.

Moving along past the hotel and through another tunnel we arrived in a quaint vine-covered street.

The cacti in this section of the village were larger, healthier and in more abundance than elsewhere. The size of some were truly remarkable.

I couldn't quite make up my mind if this was the garden proper or simply the makings for said garden. Either way it was worthy of a photo.

More climbing...

More meandering and covered walkways...

Another great photo op...

And finally, like the cat in the next photo, it's time to say goodbye to Haut-de-Cagnes. Au revoir

* * *