Monday, 22 September 2008

Summer ends in the Languedoc



I've been utterly engrossed in my latest reading material of late. I've always got at least three books on the go but I couldn't put down the story of the love affair between Maria Callas and Aristotle Onassis. I've been reading snippets out loud to His Lordship. 'How romantic' I remarked, 'Onassis flew in on a helicopter when Callas was sunbathing on some remote beach, dropped a trinket into her lap, gave her a passionate kiss and flew off again'. That's because he could' he snorted. 'I bring you a cup of tea beside the pool' what more could a woman want ? continuing this discussion is obviously pointless and futile.

Where does the time go to ? it's supposedly the end of the summer, well I won't rub it in but it doesn't feel like it here with Sunday being a respectable 27 degrees. People have been trickling in and out for bed and breakfast for a night or two through Last Minute France which gives me some breathing space before the flurry in October. We're doing a grand feast on Sunday night too, our in-house catering seems very popular especially for celebration meals. I'm hoping they will have the Plateau de fruits de Mer because I love piling the shellfish onto heaps of ice and draping a bed of fresh seaweed onto the base.

Apparently we have appeared on Flemish television in all our glory. A couple featured and were looking for a 'dream home', a dandy little idea I thought for PR purposes but after saying how glorious it was they then ended by saying the place needed 250,000 spent on it. What ? am I dreaming ?, has the sun finally addled my brain or has the sound of my own voice impaired my hearing ? 2,000, 5,000, 25,000 could be trickled through my fingers at a push, but 250,000 ?? I received a wonderful letter from a viewer in Belgium who were apparently 'nailed to their sofa' as they watched the tour around the house, 'we adored every aspect of your home' they enthused 'and can't wait to come and stay'. It is precisely the fact that it is so 'untarted', so 'au natural' with its charming French Shabby Chic that makes us so unique. Rarely am I lost for words but flabbergasted sums it up nicely.

Dare I say it ? well I will anyway, but what with all the financial doom and gloom that abounds I was left wondering whether people's minds would be focused on holidays but next summer seems to be very much in the forefront of people's planning.

A holiday at Le Chateau could be just the ticket to look forward to, just conjure up the tempting vision of those luscious grapes pressed and bottled.

Of course there's always the option too of a little getaway prior to Christmas to do your shopping in the maze of individual shops at Carcassonne and further afield the cosmopolitan city of Toulouse to explore.

I can't believe I just uttered the Christmas word, I guess summer is over for another year after all.

11 comments:

lampworkbeader said...

I've just looked at 'Last Minute France' it's a very tempting offer....Hmm!
Can you take a mountain bike on a plane, 'cos he won't leave home without it.

Sally's Chateau said...

LWB, we often get people bringing their own bikes across but then you could always hire one here in Carcassonne and I guess you could borrow mine ? what are you waiting for :)

HER ON THE HILL said...

Well, I think we can safely say that summer's over here - NOT THAT IT EVER BEGAN!!!!! - the temperature guage hit a scorching 12.5 degrees yesterday and 18 is deemed almost excessively hot in these parts. Sigh. How I would love to be looking out over your idyllic view today...

Adore Toulouse - lived there for a year back in 1984/85 and swore that was where I was going to spend the rest of my life. Even fell in love, for God's sake, with my dream man (med student). Unfortunately both he and I were supposedly 'with another' so it never quite happened. He drove me to Carcassonne one evening. I was in 7th Heaven. More sighs. What went wrong???

muddyboots said...

Well, as someone who has been and stayed in Le Chateau, l can safely say that the property has been sympathetically restored keeping the wonderful charm and character of the place intact.

To propose to spend that much money l guess, would result in a total refurbishment, ripping off the ancient wood paneling, replacing the original windows and shutters with UPVC,adding air conditioning, and in general turning what is a delightful country property into what could only be termed 'mutton dressed as lamb'! Is the vendage in full swing yet?

Grouse said...

As someone known and loved by us both said yeterday: 'Breeding will out!'

You cant put class where it isnt and you cant make a silk purse out of a WAG.

£25,000!
How very DARE they!

Pondside said...

All you can do is laugh. What do they know, really?
I'd imagine that a pre-Christmas trip would be heavenly - the shopping wouldn't be a chore in the markets and small shops.

Fennie said...

It does just seem so impossibly beautiful. I love Carcassone and I did a 'chantier de jeunesse' at Lezignan in 1965. But never been back there since. Would be lovely to come though.

Frances said...

Whenever I read about the chateau, I want to just Be There. Not tomorrow, not in time for Christmas. No. I mean Now!

Sally, you are a wonder, and work magic every day, no matter which season it might be.

xo

ChrisH said...

27! Oooh, tell me how it feels. We did see a little sunshine but since it was accompanied by stiff breeze most of the time it was still pretty froid. Huh! And if Le Chateau is your viewers' idea of Shabby Chic they should have seen our place!

Grouse said...

OOps! I missed a nought off! Oh well.......what's £225k between friends...............

Judy said...

What a lovely vacation that would be. And I'm not near ready for the Christmas word.