The Chateau of Cheverny in France’s Loire Valley is positively awash is hunting dogs. Don’t walk in this giant pen, you’ll be “enveloped,” by anywhere from 70 to 100 hounds. They’re half English foxhound and half French Poitou and, though there are riotous number of dogs in one place, they all appear to be well groomed and happy, like most Frenchmen.
The stately hunting palace was built between 1604 to 1634 and is
one of the gems of chateau country. It’s been in the same family for six centuries and the current viscount and his family still live on the third floor of the chateau. They share their the chateau’s gardens, fabulous decor and amazing architecture with visitors. Still, if you’re a dog lover, you’ll pass all that by and head for the hounds.
On one of my favorite kayak trips from Rockport, on the Massachusetts coast, is to the Dry Salvages, a group of giant rocks off the coast of Cape Ann. It’s fun to paddle out there and even more fun when grey and harbor seals pop up next to your kayak to check you out.
I later learned that the Dry Salvages inspired T.S. Eliot’s “The Dry Salvages,” the third poem in his sequence Four Quartets. Eliot spent his summers on Cape Ann in Gloucester and the the poet’s estate has just acquired the Eliot family’s summer house by the sea there which the family sold many years ago. The estate plans to use it to promote Eliot’s life and works to his American readers. Hopefully that means lovers of literature and old houses may have a chance to take a tour. Read about it in this article in The Guardian.
The Dry Salvages obviously pose a danger for ships and many have crashed on them, hence the name. And, during the death and destruction of World War II, Eliot found used them as a symbol.
“the menace and caress of wave that breaks on water/ The distant rote in the granite teeth,/ And the wailing warning from the approaching headland…”
But, on a sunny day, in a brightly colored kayak, with seals around, the Dry Salvages seem a lot less dismal.
I’ve used this image in an earlier blog post. Obviously, Cape Ann is one of my favorite spots. In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “Afloat.”
In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “Blur.” I usually throw out the blurry pix because they’re not blurry on purpose, just bad camera settings. But a little blur gives a great sense of action or takes your eye to the background or the foreground of the picture as in these photos of kids playing in Quetzaltenango, Guatemala.
This week’s challenge: show a minimalist photo. This is the steeple at the chapel of Bishop’s Lodge, just outside Santa Fe. The chapel was built for the priest, Bishop Lamy, who was the inspiration for Willa Cather’s novel Death Comes for the Archbishop. The light in New Mexico makes just about any photograph interesting.
Serendipity is one of the best parts of travel. We ran into a performance by the street band Rock Box one night in Isle-sur-la-Sorgue, France. You can’t beat their school-boy costumes and the use of a tuba in place of a base guitar isn’t something one sees too often, either.
They appeared on the France Has Talent TV show with great praise from the judges. You haven’t lived until you’ve seen this band perform AC/DC’s “Highway to Hell” with the bellowing tuba, so here’s your chance: