Saturday, March 26, 2011



 Ah yes, spring, glorious spring. After all my whining about winter, March has been wonderful.This Blog is a spring tour with lots of photos.

route in pink

Went on a few walks this month. One was earlier in the month. We walked near Messanges, taking a route near Meuilley, then towards Villars-Fontaine and over to Sergois and back to Messanges. We had the two dogs with us, Flipper ( Marie T's dog) and Dols ( her father's dog). Walking along the dirt paths, the dogs are loose and run and play. We only have to put them on the leash when we are on major roads. Messanges is located on the side of a hill, so we go down, then across, and it is up hill to Villars and Sergois.

I have a couple more photos from this walk.

Vineyard - Villars-Fontaine
Sergois- small village

Mid month, I was excited about the arrival of spring. I took some photos of my garden.

My gardenMy flowersNeighbor's lawn

Now a little detour - our neighbor's cat. In the past I have mentioned Tim ( our name for him). He comes and goes as he pleases. He has made himself at home here. Keeps wanting food, but we refuse to feed him. It does not stop him from asking though. One day looking out the window towards the neighbors house, there was Tim. Next to it is a photo I took, just because he was here.
a sign of spring, or cat on the hot "" roof?                    So cute

Another walk with Marie Therese and Flipper. This time we went to Reulle Vergy and walked around the top. I will write a whole article this summer when I take a guided tour. The ruins of the chateau are on top, along with the ruins of the old abbey St Vivant. So more on that this summer. This walk was just for fun.

Église Saint-Saturnin  XII century
 Some people can walk near the edge! ! !
 And so can their dogs-  Flipper
 Must be SPRING

I took a walk this last week and decided to add a little lecture on grape vines. I know that you all are dying to know about grape vines, and I have not written much.
During the months of November through February the vignerons are busy cutting back the vines. After the excess is cut off, these branches ( sarments) are gathered and burned. In theory the time for burning must end Febraury 14th....hmm what was that smoke the other day? As stated, in theory ( or law that no one pays any attention to- whatever ).
 Before the vines bud in the spring, the branch must be attached to the wire ( think of this, bend over to cut, bend over to remove branches, bend over to attach branch---ouch!!)
Here are some photos I took this last week walking through Gevrey ( except the close up of hands-that was 2 years ago).

Vineyard plowed and ready 

Vines from above photos- branch attached 

Different vineyard- no plowing- each vignerons has a personal preference- branches tied 

Tying is done by hand 

 Tractor by cemetery
These old vines are done by another method

How vines are grown, cut , tied and generally cared for are all the choice of the vignerons. In practice, the vines on this side of the Côte are shorter than the vines up and over the hill in the region called the Hautes Côtes. Some plow, others leave grass or put in gravel. Some have gone back to the "old" ways.

Now if I have not totally lost my audience, onto other things.

Of course with the nice weather Keith has been out riding his bike. He is a biking fool, riding between 60 to 90km a day when weather and time permits. He is still going to Bligny to work on the trains on Saturdays. That will end on May 1st when they start running the trains on the weekends. Sure hope they all run! ! ! Still looking into the boiler problem on the one train. All donations can be sent directly to the Tourist Train ($60,000 or so) at Bligny ...JUST KIDDING! Do hope they find a solution. The one big steam engine, the Meuse, is working. And of course a couple of the diesels are working too. And then on the side, for his bike restoration, he is trying to pin stripe the bike. And someone from his french internet group is making some wooden handles. There will be photos of the finished product.

I have to get busy here too. I continue as treasurer of the history group, but now I have charge of the sub committee of Photography. We have added some new members too, and have some interesting outings coming up. There is no lack of historical sites here in the Cote D'Or.

Photoclub has its Expo on May 14th and 15th. A lot a focus on that the last couple of weeks. I think all is ready now.

Have been watching lots of news the last few weeks. So many tragic events going on ( Japan and Libya). It does make the mundane events in our daily life pale in comparison. One must be thankful for what one has.


Tabouli ( ah  maybe not what you think, this is the what the french call tabouli)
This is just a quick recipe idea. With the warm weather coming, I thought I would toss this in. Every french picnic or gathering, where everyone brings something, there will be a tabouli or two. It is couscous.

INGREDIENTS ( this is flexible)
  • 1 cup dry couscous
  • large tomato chopped
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 small cucumber diced ( not more than 1 cup)
  • 3/4 cup  parsley chopped ( or coriander )
  • 2 eggs boiled and chopped
  • 1 red pepper (small) chopped or jullianed
  • 1 clove garlic minced fine
  • [ other options- raisons, chicken, zucchini ....]
  • 1/4 cup Lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoon Olive oil
  • Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
  • Cumin or other seasoning can be added too -depends on your taste.

  1. Prepare couscous according to recipe (1 cup couscous to 1 cup water or 1 cup chicken broth -I prefer using vegetable or chicken broth for some flavor). 
  2.  Let set a few minutes then fluff with a fork
  3. Combine prepared couscous with all of the ingredients you have prepared.
  4.  Whisk together the dressing ingredients.
  5.  Pour dressing over the couscous a little at a time and mix well.
  6.  Serve 
You can prepare ahead of time and refrigerate.