France, Summer 2021, after all.

Discovering splendid municipal architecture in Évreux, and castles in Lapalisse and Châteldon (the home town of Pierre Laval, though that doesn’t get much of a mention in the tourist office!)

I am also quite a fan of the N7, but I think this rather large sign in Lapalisse is new:

Likewise this rather alarming roadside cross that has appeared right outside the front gate… I think over the last year European money has restored several of these 19th century calvaires which had disappeared during the late 20th century.

We’ll get used to it!

Reading, walking, eating….and several sessions with the dye pots, mostly sock yarn this time.

I also took some pictures of a corridor my daughter decided to decorate some years ago:

We are holding a memorial event to celebrate her life on Sunday. This is necessary, but not easy. I think I will take my late September tree pictures on the same day – still a really useful prop!

On/off? Yes? No?

It turns out it’s ‘yes’ after all. We changed our minds every day – so many factors for and against – but finally we decided to keep the ferry booking we made way back before lockdown. We’re off to France tomorrow.

Piles of bags – and bags of piles – everywhere. One bag for clothes, one bag for books (thanks to kindle) and all the rest for yarn, tops, dyestuffs, winding gear….

I did have some pictures but WordPress continues to be weird. Nasty little pink boxes that say ‘An unknown error occurred’. No further help. So no image possible. Ridiculous.

You can probably tell I still hate this new Block Editor. I do keep trying.

I’ll wave from over the Channel – internet and WordPress permitting. Exciting, if rather anxious, times!

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Montreal – such fun! Climbing Mont Réal, queuing for Poutine, not to mention the queues de castors….

The main purpose of our recent trip to North America was to visit daughter number 4, currently living in Canada (*waves* – could be some while till we meet again!). We had the choice of March or May. I badly wanted to see a real Winter (and we did!!) – but how lucky was that…we just missed the travel ban, quite by serendipity and my enthusiasm for snow.

A warm welcome from some Canadian relatives in Kingston – fabulous views over Lake Ontario, and three colours of squirrel. This is the black one, which I didn’t know existed. The red and the grey are smaller and kept their distance. I wanted a shot of all three together, but they weren’t up for co-operating.

Mont Tremblant, where SOME of us went skiing. The rest (me) wandered around the Disney-like little winter sports village. All very cute and pretty but not real. I wished I’d brought my Thomas Mann Magic Mountain, which I last read in the Alps – but way too heavy for the plane journey.

Ottawa  – frozen rivers and canals, as far as you can see… definitely magic. The second picture was taken outside the Canadian Museum of History in Gatineau – beautifully laid out, really interesting and on a manageable human scale.

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Finally – no prizes for guessing the last stop! Niagara, on the way back to Toronto airport. Terrifying force – and such a noise of rushing water. You can only stand and stare.  Literally awesome. I haven’t upgraded this blog to accept video – so you’re spared that!

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This is so striking. We came across it on the way out of the Met. and it caught my eye because it looked like a modern sculpture, down amongst the Greek and Roman exhibits. It turns out it is by Jean-Antoine Houdon, called ‘La Frileuse’ (but known as ‘Winter’) and dates from the late eighteenth century.  I can’t believe I had never come across it before – it’s probably famous. We just walked round and round it. Stunningly powerful.

(Much better photos than these on the internet, sorry about mine!)