Friday, October 11, 2013

A Walk to Utopia

Actually, the name of the small village we walked to one day in France last week was Oupia but it was quite idyllic. Except for the fact that it was raining.  It had been raining all morning and we'd reluctantly cancelled our plans to drive to the Mediterranean that day as a result. By the time lunch was over, we were all ready to get out for some fresh air so when the rain trickled off to a fine mist, we headed out.

We wanted to walk to the village we could see out our windows, just across the valley.

Accordingly to Google Maps, it was only 1.4 km away so it wouldn't take long.  In reality, it took about 40 minutes, much longer than necessary but only because we stopped to take pictures every few feet! Everything was camera worthy, from the grapes on the vine

(which we examined quite closely)

to the view of the chateau behind us,

and the stretch of road ahead of us.

There was also a rusty old gate,

a very unique fence

and a slightly aggressive rooster.

We came across this bench as we arrived at the outskirts of the village.  At first we thought the sign said "reserved seating", which seemed pretty funny since we appeared to be smack dab in the middle of nowhere.  We realized later, with the help of a French/English dictionary, that it meant "hunting reserve", although I don't know why a bench would be required for that?

When we arrived at Oupia, there was lots to see.  The architecture was quite picturesque, especially this building:

In spite of the grey day, there was still colour to be found.

I wonder how many grapes have sat in this metal bucket to make it turn this particular shade of purple?

It was while I was standing under a tree taking this photo of the village church

that I realized the rain had started to come down even harder.  As a result, we didn't linger too much longer.  We only found one retail shop and it was closed.  The post office was open so we popped in to buy stamps, much to the surprise of the postmistress, who looked quite startled when we walked in from the rain (clearly, the locals knew it was better to stay indoors in such weather!).

We headed back to our home away from home

and arrived there soaked through to the skin (except for my top half, which had been quite adequately protected by my waterproof jacket, which I can now heartily endorse for its effectiveness!) but happy from our little adventure in the French countryside.

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