Tuesday Photo Challenge: Steps

Answering the theme of ‘steps’ this week is this dramatic-looking staircase to be found in the twelfth-century church in the nearby village of Saint-Martial-sur-Isop.

Although the ceiling has obviously been renovated,  this steep and winding set of stairs leading up to the roof looks, if not original then pretty old. Not surprisingly, it isn’t open to the public.

More responses to Frank’s latest challenge can be found here: Tuesday Photo Challenge: Steps

Tuesdays of Texture: Staircase

I think there could be some Health & Safety issues about this ancient staircase in the nearby village of Saint-Martial-sur-Isop. All very well to admire the textures, but you wouldn’t get me up there.

Tuesdays of Texture 30 May 2017

Weekly Photo Challenge: Heritage

We live in a very rural part of France, where agriculture remains a crucial element of the local economy.

As most farms remain family businesses, they are typically much smaller than the vast agri-industrial enterprises to be found elsewhere. Modern methods are used, of course (nobody uses a pair of horses for tilling any more, apart from at the annual ploughing competition), but there is still plenty of heritage, in the sense of evidence of the way things used to be done.

In particular, there is the open-air museum of rural life at nearby Montrol-Sénard, which includes this barn, still containing old cattle byres. There were some just like these in our own barn when we bought it, but they were too far gone and disappeared during the restoration process.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Heritage

Thursday Doors: Mezieres-sur-Issoire

Everywhere in France is part of one commune or another (and every commune belongs to a canton, and every canton belongs to a département, which in turn is part of a region and so on). Our little hamlet is about four miles from the eponymous village in the commune of Mézières-sur-Issoire.

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Although we’ve now lived here for over four years, there are still parts of the village that I’ve never explored or looked at in any detail, but a recent Sunday afternoon provided an opportunity to redress that shortcoming and discover that there is no shortage of previously unseen – or at least unnoticed – interesting doors (not to mention gates, although that’s for next week).

For example, this charming wooden outbuilding, set back from the main road:

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as is this barn:

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Along a little lane which I’d never previously ventured down was this door in the corner of the garden wall of one of the village’s larger houses:

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Much more familiar is the very grand house right in the centre of the village that’s lain empty for years. Somebody’d just bought it for a knock-down price, but now faces the mother of all renovation projects. Good luck with that (he said from personal experience).

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This imposing edifice, also on the main road used to be a commercial premises of some sort, but the sign has faded to illegibility:

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On a smaller scale and down a side road is another former commercial outlet, to judge by the door on the left, but again I’ve no idea what sort of business used to operate out of there:

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Next week’s post will be devoted to gates rather than doors. On my wanderings around the village, I came across some highly photogenic ones.

Thursday Doors 17 November 2016

All you need to know

Nothing much to add in explanation of this image of our local village’s electronic information sign. Except perhaps that those clouds really were as dark and threatening as they look: about five minutes later we had a brief but heavy hailstorm.

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Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Signs

Weekly Photo Challenge: Local

It really can’t get much more local for me than this, because I took this photograph through my own front window.

That’s my neighbour Albert, keeping a watchful eye on one of his last few ewes as she takes her lamb from the barn over to the pasture, which is on the other side of the road that you can see at the top of the picture.

Sad to say, Albert died earlier this year. You can just see his faithful dog, Arielle, behind him. That’s about as far apart as they ever were: Arielle pined away and died about two weeks after Albert.

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Local

Tuesdays of Texture: Rust

These rusting chains and hoops hang over the disused well in the centre of the nearby village of Bonnefont. At a guess, the hoops once held together wooden buckets, which were lowered on the chains to collect water.

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Tuesdays of Texture Week 42