Monday, 13 July 2015
Saint-Paul-de-Vence: Chocolate and cats
After the success of the Grasse and Gourdon excursion I decided to go on another group visit, this time to Saint-Paul-de-Vence, a famously beautiful village in the hills.
The way Antibes for me is light blue/turquoise and Menton green (as illustrated in their world-clouds), Saint-Paul is most definitely purple. It wasn't that the colour was particularly present apart from the typical lavender merchandise.
I suspect I have synaesthesia as for me a colour is more than just a visual shade or tone, it is an identity; I can taste, smell, hear and feel it. And Saint-Paul-de-Vence was purple in every sense.
We entered through the door which was once the only way in, set in the old town wall. We admired a cannon with a fun legend attached - soldiers from a rival town tried to steal it and the guards of Saint-Paul fired cherries at them!
Within the town we saw the boules area frequented by Picasso and other artists.
There was also a chilled black cat on a well, beautiful jasmine and lots of artists' studios.
There were endless touristy shops and in one I heard "Sensualité" by Axelle Red on the radio.
I'd seen it performed on "N'oubliez pas les paroles", the French version of "Don't Forget the Lyrics". (It's still going strong there; I wish we still had the British one.) However, the original struck me with its catchiness and I couldn't get it out of my head for the rest of the fortnight!
A quiet little highlight of the trip was visiting the artist Marc Chagall's resting place. Like many Jewish tombs it is covered in stones rather than flowers and was very elegant. Seeing it was a sad but special moment.
I went on to visit a luxurious chocolate shop, enjoy yet another ice-cream (can you tell I'm a fan of ice-cream yet?) and buy some postcards for my collection and some pretty soaps as gifts. I left Saint-Paul feeling that I had really connected with this very purple town.
Thanks for reading,