Friday, 3 July 2015

Plus ca change

The square below our house - Place Paul Simon - has undergone big changes following the devastating flood of 2010.

The new-look Place Paul Simon with its water flow from the fountain to the circular pool below.
Last year they replaced the medieval bridge (on one side of the square) that had been washed away and carried out major works to prevent future blockages at the point where the river flows underground across the main town square.
This year, they have modified Place Paul Simon. The image of Federation Square in Melbourne keeps springing to mind - even though this is nothing like it. I think it is because they removed all the beautiful, mature, shady trees that filled the space (and buckled the surface of the square).
We arrived here at the start of a canicule or heatwave. Today it will reach 35'C and that will soar progressively each day, to top 40'C-plus on Monday. Difficult to cope with after leaving on a sparkling, frosty, but sunny morning.
We need those shady trees!

Looking up Rue de l'Horloge towards the clocktower.
However, apart from the tree loss, the square is a vast improvement, with a water-flow from the original fountain down to a circular, (reflective?) pool. I am sure this is some sort of allegory on the flood - but I have yet to find out if I am right.
There is a mini-amphitheatre with semi-circular seating (again harking back to Federation Square) for outdoor concerts, and the three restaurants in the square are well placed to share the entertainment. And there are only temporary parking places outside the boulangerie, so it has removed the constant negotiation with cars that used to happen as you crossed the square.
I still miss the trees.

Overlooking the town from the Place du Chateau.
But everything else is the same - the market, the inspiring view across the town, the friendliness of the locals, and the sheer delight of being back in France!

Getting into the swing of things at the Thursday market in the town centre.
The flower stand.

Every variety of delicious, vine-ripened tomato is snapped up early.

And no, we are no longer prepared to accept doggie poops on the street.
Impasse de l'Horloge and not 'Impasse de la Merde'.


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  2. So glad you have arrived safely, even though it is so hot! It all looks so lovely, I can't wait to return next year! Your little town seems so familiar to me even though I have only been there once. And it looks as though there will be trees again, if I guess right that the trees near the fountain are a permanent feature. Say hello to Les Arc for me!!! XXXXX

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