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Thursday, May 29, 2008

Van Gogh country...

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

We moved north here to St-Rémy yesterday, into charming rooms in a 19th c villa—Le Castelet des Alpilles—about ½ a km south of the old town. The camera has got misplaced, so I’ll sprinkle in some shots from the past few days. This view of Les Baux—taken from across the valley as we biked north toward St-Rémy a couple of days ago—is so cool I’m giving it space enough for you to see some detail.
Unfortunately my riding is on hold, since I evidently tore my left lumbar over the weekend. Jane and I had enjoyed one of our best rides and I noticed no problems when I went swimming later that afternoon. But the next morning I was suffering pain sufficient to all but prevent me from walking downstairs to breakfast. Ibuprofen produced only moderate relief, so yesterday I saw a physician—“Dr Phillippe Eric” as MDs advertise themselves—who, after a cursory orthopedic check, seemed to agree it was muscular. His prescription of a combination of paracetemol and something called “tramadol” (along with the familiar muscle-relaxant diclofenac sodium) has me comfortable enough to sleep and get around. So this afternoon we’ll do the “Van Gogh Walk” when Jane gets in from biking some more routes in les Alpilles. I hope I recover for the planned ride to see the Pont du Gard on Friday. (I tried to get some Vicodin but evidently the French have never heard of hydroxycontin; hard to believe, I know.)

Here are a couple of shots of our riding around Mt Ste-Victoire. I’m writing about my interpretation of Cezánne’s lifelong study of the mountain. It’s quite easy to understand his fascination, and to experience it.

Mercredi is “market day” in St-Rémy, so every square—along with the municipal parking lot—was filled with stalls of goods this morning. The wares, however, were the usual mixture of cheap clothing and housewares with a sprinkling of jewelry and food. Except for local vegetables—the garlique and artichauds looked great—I’m convinced the crap on display comes from the same suppliers in Singapore and Sri Lanka that fill the stands in the U.S. and no doubt everywhere else on the planet. I got a copy of today’s International Herald Tribune and enjoyed a cup of tea in the sunshine that’s returned, following several nights of thunderstorms violent enough to be remarkable even at home in the U.S. “Unusual weather”, as people everywhere usually say…


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Dad,

Hope your back improves, the scenery is far to grand from the road. Love and hugs from the family in NJ.


1:58 PM  

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