Visiting Castles along the Dordogne in France

To Les Jardins de Marqueyssac and Beynac et Cazenac in the Dordogne River.

Dordogne Chateau... Belcastal a Fairytale fortress

Belcastal a Fairytale fortress along the Dordogne river

Yesterday afternoon we decided on a short trip to some of the exquisite chateau villages along The Dordogne. Traveling the small roads via the heights of Rocamadour through the scrub oak forest scribbled with plots of very green pasture and bordered with crumbled stone fences. Belcastal a Fairytale fortress of a home clings to a jagged cliff poised at a perfect twist of sparkling Dordogne so as to come across it ones breath is held.

We linger in a view spot photograph each angle with light just so, and edges of green meadows, roof tops and glistening river. I see a painting taking form. Quietly I ask myself what is it that calls to be painted. What strikes the cord of creativity of soul lust to express to sing with the experience. There is a heightening of energy that niggles and bubbles and yearns to be echoed to be repeated through the filters of ones own perception.


Beynac and Casanac. we remember picnicing here on our first trip to France after university

France for me has so many of those moments. A kind of ownership occurs that translates into a discussion with Duart…. “so, I guess we will never buy a French farm house?” ” Right.”
I ask myself,  What is it about wanting ownership? To swallow it up to digest and swoon and have it. I think its a kind of resonance that is so deep one just knows you live it breathe it, are it. “So I guess we will never buy a French farm house,”….”no, probably not in our life as the west coast of Canada is too far to live here too.” “Yes I know”…., I ponder this, yes I know. There are so many places like this that stir me to tears, to longing of ownership. It seems I grasp to own. I suck in my breath and feel the beginning of contentment to just breathe this view, this moment, this feeling, this will be enough.

village of La Roque-Gageag

village of La Roque-Gageag

The day is filtered with clouds drifting past, bees droning, and distant bleat of sheep. Our drive continues past crumbled walls cloaked in a purple mantle, wisteria a springtime bandaid that heals calloused  buildings releasing their grandeur through the violet lens of a blind eye. Farm refuse, pot holes, industrial waysides I refuse to see through my filters of romance, instead the stately stone homes with dove coats the pigeon airs with turret top roofs or square tower appendages with tiny slatted windows and deeply sloping roof lines curve and draw my eye to field, fence and yet another old farm. The stone materials timeless ageless cross the boundaries of my Canadian heritage. My European Celtic roots is what is being stirred and remembered. I wonder about  past lives lived. If I can smell, feel, taste this deeply, did I not live this?

Les Jardins de Marqueyssac

Les Jardins de Marqueyssac

IMG_7594This morning I awoke to seven bells slowly rung from the steeple in Rignac. Outside the laundry still hung and damp. Queen of the Orange curls round my ankles. The doves begin the cooing that continue throughout the day and clouds drift lazily through the eastern sky still pink streaked but slowly wain to deeper blue. It will be a beautiful day. I shall paint, write, then go to market for lemons, leeks and asapergus. IMG_6700Later I will walk through the village past our favourite house, with four gabled peaks that swoon to sturdy slate roof. The high stone fence on road side is edged with purple iris fully bloomed. The gate is organized with stone mill wheels embedded in the ancient wall. A curved stone lintel covered in lichen above. We will walk past and say “this is the house I would buy.”
Laundry to rearrange on the line, and do battle with the new washer machine, a compact replacement to the antiquated one that after two washes belted black smoke though out our cottage. In our short two months here it is the domestic chores that root and centre our days.

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