We set the alarm for 7 am since we needed to run, then have breakfast, then drive 3 hours to Beynac. It felt like the alarm went off too soon! I think that 9 hour time difference might be catching up to us. We headed out for a run towards le vieux pont, the old bridge, and we started running along the river. It was chilly, and it had rained overnight, but the little streets were so pretty we had plenty to keep our minds occupied. Then we went back to the hotel and showered, and went to the dining room where John had his first ever proper French breakfast. It was delicious! Apple Juice, coffee, yogurt, ham, cheese, pastries, jams, and butter. It was yum. The hotel had 2 big dogs and a cat, and we enjoyed watching them as we ate. Why is it that the pets here are so overweight, but the people are so fit? How does that happen? The old brown lab was so chubby he looked like two of my little Penny. But he was so pretty there on the steps. I had to give him an ear scritch.
We drove about an hour into Toulouse, where we walked around the old city and went to the market. It was so very beautiful. We enjoyed looking at all of the shops on the meandering streets between parks. I had expected Toulouse to be more modern, and I was glad when Samantha led us right into the middle of the old city, where we wandered the streets imaging what life would have been like 200 years ago.
Then we drove towards Beynac, but had a little adventure first. We saw a sign that said “Vin” and felt we needed to follow it. So we drove down many narrow country roads, following each sign, until we came to a little farm house and parked. We got out of the car and walked around, but were about to leave since we did not see anyone. Just then a woman came out and said “Bonjour!” She took us into her basement and let us taste some wine. We bought a few bottles then got back on the road, where Samantha begrudgingly “Recalculated” our route back to town.
The town we were heading for was Sarlat—a larger town about 7 km from Beynac. They were having their market, and we were surprised that we kept walking, and the market kept going! We walked and walked, checking out all the items for sale. Soon we left and went to Beynac, our home for 5 nights with Kirk, Corinne, Justin and Emma. We arrived into town, which was swarming with gaping tourists. You can understand why—the whole town, about 100 houses and a large castle, are perched on the side of a severe cliff overlooking the river. It doesn’t even seem possible that these houses can be here.
We walked up two steep footpaths to the entrance of our place, Mont Joie, and started to settle in. The property has a total of 4 flights of stairs. The first floor is the main living area, then the master suite, then the downstairs ensuite bedroom, then terrace 1, then terrace 2. So there is plenty of room to spread out. We unpacked, caught up, then went to dinner at the Restaurant Hotel du Chateux, where John and I shared a Prix Fixe menu of duck salad, venison, and cheeses.
What a lovely home, and what lovely friends to share it with. It’s going to be such a nice stay.