the day goes on...

storm clouds and downpours come and go

We stop for lunch in Chatillon-sut-Seine...


...drive a ways across the countryside in this most northerly part of the Département de la Côte d’Or, dodging downpours...

Storm clouds lifting

...and searching for Paris, and the source of the mighty River Seine.

Then all at once we’re there, at the veritable Source de la Seine...

La Source de la Seine

... where the goddess Sequana lolls atop the spring itself in a grotto. This is a little outpost of Paris, administratively as it is aesthetically, in the depths of the northern Côte d’Or, no more than about ten miles east of Flavigny.

In these pictures Ruth ambles across one of Paris’s least-known bridges, the Pont Paul Lamarche (1902-2003),

Le Pont Paul Lamarche,

and poses alongside La Reine de la Seine herself, seemingly assisting her in her riparian endeavours!

La Source de la Seine, Paris, Bourgogne

Then it’s back to Flavigny.

The sun finally breaks through over the town as we descend towards the Vignoble de Flavigny-Alésia in the valley below


and repair to the Maison du Vigneron to break out a bottle of “Demoiselle de Laizan”, the Vignoble’s not-half-bad Vin Effervescent.

For we still have a birthday to celebrate!!!

Birthday Glow

farewell to Flavigny

on a misty morning

we awaken to find the valley hidden from view from our windows

Flavigny : Mist in the valley (1) >>>>>>>>> Flavigny : Mist in the valley (2)

we wave goodbye to Flavigny, to Jean-Luc and Marte Tahon who’ve been our excellent hosts here, and to Françoise, Philipe and Leonard who were our neighbours and fellow-visitors. While they head south for their home in Hyères, we head north.

It’s a little sad to open our door and see Flavigny and the église Saint-Genest for the last time

Farewell to Flavigny

but on we go, and Ruth for one seems happy at Larrey (ho, ho, ho) as we near the northern perimeter of la Bourgogne...

Ruth : Happy at Larrey

We thought maybe we’d find a lakeside campsite, and checked out the Étang de Marcenay and Lac d’Orient (pictured). After all, as noted previously, Les Francais aiment leurs Lacs. But thinking about it, we live in the land of lochs, and of course Argyllshire has more coastline than France, so maybe we’re just a bit picky when it comes to lacs, lochs and lakes.

Lac d'Orient

Anyhow, after much nosing around, we ended the day in Champagne, in the Côte des Blancs vineyard area, in the village of Vertus, and the Hôtel Thibault IV, a ** Logis de France, and not one we’ll want to revisit. Along the way we passed through Troyes (which looked worth a visit - we may go back) and Épernay (which didn’t. The Rough Guide likes it, and gives a seriously misleading picture of a quiet little market town. We didn’t find that.)

This is Vertus:

Place de la République, Vertus, Champagne

Note the grey sky...

the day begins...

...with a birthday breakfast for a birthday girl

Never divulge that certain age, but it’s a big birthday!!!

Birthday girl

a rainy day in Flavigny

is an opportunity to explore indoors. Starting of course in the church.

And as we can, we start by going upstairs in the church
Église Saint-Genest : interior

Église Saint-Genest : interior, upper floor

Downstairs, virgin and child appear
Virgin and child in l'Église Saint-Genest

The weather does not improve, but there’s a wonderful stormy light in the sky, which deepens as the hours go by.

This is 4 o’clock:
Flavigny : Street scene

By 9pm the light is further enhanced by a rainbow, seen here over the roof of our neighbours’ house
Rainbow : Leica M8 with CV 15mm lens

And as the light starts to fade, we walk back up to the church, still louring over the town as the sun sets over the hills
Flavigny : a damp evening light on the church

nighttime in Flavigny

as dusk descends, l’Église Saint-Genest lours beneath the “blue hour” sky

Flavigny: l'heure bleue à Flavigny ...a gargoyle leaps in the last rays of day... Flavigny : gargoyle at dusk

...and ghostly children lurk outside the walls Flavigny: La Porte du Val

Flavigny : La Porte du Bourg until at last night falls Flavigny : l'église by night

around & about Flavigny (2)

down the road apiece....

The search for a supermarket had already led us to Semur-en-Auxois on the way up to Flavigny yesterday, and now was a chance to look around this scruffy but interesting and history-laden town.

Semur-en-Auxois Semur-en-Auxois

Semur-en-Auxois Semur-en-Auxois


So quiet, for a summer Sunday afternoon.

(The new Tuscany???)

around & about Flavigny (1)

settling in to having a roof over our heads and a kitchen to cook in

and this to look out on while eating our breakfast

View from the kitchen door

A day to begin to explore the environs.

Some pictures of Flavigny’s streets may give an impression of the feel of the village:

L'Église Saint-Genest, Flavigny, from our doorstep Street scene with reflections, Flavigny Doorway, Flavigny

Street Scene, Flavigny La Vielle Chocolaterie, Flavigny Flavigny-sur-Ozerain, Ville Fleurie


to Flavigny-sur-Ozerain, and "La Maison du Vigneron"

if our 2010 holiday had a centre, this was it

After exploring some new parts of eastern central France, we headed today to our gîte in the village of Flavigny-sur-Ozerain, towards the north of the Côte d’Or Département in Burgundy. Is Burgundy the new Tuscany? Wait and see...

Not too far from Cluny to Flavigny, but we ambled along, checking out campsites at Beaune and Savigny-lès-Beaune for future reference along the way. The Beaune site (“100 Vignes”) looks to have potential, though we’re not sure how long we’d want to spend in the bustling wine town itself, and it’s a fairly urban site. Savigny - also not sure, though nearby Pernand-Vergelesses looked pretty, and would make a good centre for a slurping-tour of the Côtes.

First view of Flavigny was the best known (from pics on the web) view, across the valley from the N9 up from Pouillenay:

Flavigny at First Sight

On arrival, a quick look round the village. All was pleasingly quiet - aside from the racket out of this wedding party. Can’t you just hear that confetti?

Wedding party in Flavigny