Posted on January 4, 2019
In the old cafe at the rural museum in Montrol-Sénard there’s a wood-burning stove range. This is one of the hotplates.
Posted on January 19, 2018
In the schoolroom of the living museum of rural life at nearby Montrol-Sénard you can still see these cooking pots, in which the pupils would bring their lunches from home, sitting them on top of the stove to keep warm.
Posted on October 31, 2017
Still away from base, so for Frank’s Tuesday Photo Challenge this week it’s another dig into the archives to match his theme of ‘Broken’.
I must say, this is one of my favourite photos – a broken cartwheel seen through the window of the blacksmith’s shop in the nearby ‘living museum’ village of Montrol-Sénard. The blurring of the ancient glass and the spiders’ webs gives the image an other-worldly atmosphere.
Posted on May 18, 2017
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.
Posted on January 11, 2017
We’ve all seen Milk Thistle extract in health shops – it’s supposed to be good for the liver – but it’s much less common to see the actual plant that it’s extracted from. As the name suggests, it’s a variety of thistle (the French name is Chardon Marie) that grows to quite a height. This one was a good seven feet tall.
I found this example, which had obviously just released its seeds, in a herb garden in the nearby village of Montrol-Sénard.
Nikon D800 with Nikkor 24-70mm ƒ2.8 lens at 58mm. 1/000 at ƒ5.6 ISO 250. Cropped and edited in Lightroom.
Posted on October 19, 2016
This image from the workshop of the local clogmaker in nearby Montrol-Sénard, a living museum of rural life, certainly displays some very interesting textures.
It resonates particularly for me, because what is now the entrance hall of our home was once the atelier of the local sabotier.
Although we have had it done up a bit:
Posted on October 1, 2016
Nostalgia? It ain’t what it used to be, is it?
The obvious temptation is to respond to this week’s WordPress Photo Challenge by pulling something quaint or sentimental out of the archives. There’s nothing wrong with that, of course, but as a counterpoint to the rose-tinted glow of memory I thought I would post this less cosy image.
The ‘living museum’ that is the nearby village of Montrol-Sénard has many features that portray a romanticised version of local life a hundred and more years ago. However, it also has this perhaps rather more realistic illustration of the way things were.
It’s a bedroom for a farm worker: a small, rough-made bed, a lumpy, dirty straw mattress and a pair of clogs (note the straw lining: no expensive luxuries like socks). When you see an example of the verité like this it’s possible to understand why the locals seem remarkably unsentimental about their comparatively recent history.