Tuesday, September 6, 2011


If it's Tuesday, this must be ... Montpellier. Debby and I are slowly emerging from jet lag, or maybe we're still in it, hard to say. We're "out of it" enough to wonder what day it is but "with it" enough to enjoy our adventure. Despite having traveled 24+ hours, we grabbed for the gusto in today. Montpellier is bright and vibrant, and both modern and quaint.

This morning we opened our hotel room windows to see the bustling organic produce market just outside under les arceaux.  We bought juicy dried (not an oxymoron in this case) fruits and nuts, some apricot nectar, chevre, and fresh pears. Vendors were extremely friendly and helpful. After sitting for coffee for Debby and tea for me outside a cafe booth in the market, we ran up our two flights of stairs to our room to enjoy some of our purchases for breakfast. They will also serve as dinner tonight and breakfast Wednesday.

Then we hoofed it back into the historic district to meet Francoise. We followed les arceaux east to the promenade de Peyrou, which is a long, tree-lined path, to an arc de triomphe, and then further east along Rue de la Loge, a main street lined with shops. Every few shops, cobblestone alleys branch off to the sides. Some have other tiny shops, some cafe tables, some not much at all. Most wind around and eventually open onto a place, an open area with cafe tables and sometimes musicians. This morning, however, we headed straight for Place de la Comedie, where we met Francoise near the steps of the Opera. First order of business: relax at Cafe Le Riche (dating to the 1890s)  for an iced tea.
After a frustrating you-can't-get-there-from-here session at the tourist office where Francoise determined it's highly questionable whether we'll be able to canoe tomorrow, we explored more of the Montpellier maze and had a delightful lunch outside Toast' Tea Cafe in the shadow of Eglise St. Roch, which had a lovely rosette window. We went in some book stores and dress shops. And we hit Ortholan ~ twice. It's a guess what? Pastry shop that sells macarons and breads, including Debby's croissant and praline macaron for tomorrow's breakfast and my mint and apricot macarons for who knows when ~ maybe dessert after my canned tuna tonight. I liked this photo in Ortholan.

1 comment:

Karen Vigmostad said...

Okay, now I'm officially VERY jealous! So glad you are enjoying Montpelier. Love to hear of your adventures and I can taste the macaroons. Most Americans don't know what they're missing.

These are some photos from my trip to Montpelier a few years ago (I started this blog for "work" but didn't continue it-long story): http://transboundary.org. After Montpelier I spent week in Nice. Boy I must go back...enjoy!!!