Monday, 31 August 2015

The industrial, the non-descript and the faded - a walk around Dompierre-sur-Besbre

From a walk around the outskirts of Dompierre-sur-Besbre, a town in the Allier Department of the Auvergne, within a few kilometers of the River Loire, capturing the mundane, non-descript, faded and industrial.

Unusually, I captured all images on my mobile phone. Firstly I realise that I now own a phone with a top class camera (for a phone), secondly I was expecting rain and did not want to carry anything more than the phone and finally if I carry anything more I have a dismal record of making any money from serious photography in France. Besides which I am on holiday and my serious gear needs a holiday too.

All images added to the new Auvergne - Allier gallery at my site.

Bains Douches
Besides the canal - on the right a circular structure the use of which was a mystery
The bins out

Couple fishing at the Dompierre canal basin
Do not urinate here
Backyard breeding of rabbits for food?
Backyard truck
The PSA-Citroen factory at Sept-Fons
The PSA-Citroen factory at Sept-Fons
The PSA-Citroen factory - on the Canal Lateral de la Loire
Abbaye de Notre Dame de Sept-Fons
Abbaye de Notre Dame de Sept-Fons
The PSA-Citroen factory at Sept-Fons
The PSA-Citroen factory at Sept-Fons
Besides the PSA-Citroen factory at Sept-Fons - temporary worker accommodation?
Paradise is a dead end

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Return to Loiret, France - Briare and Chatillon-sur-Loire

I have just read that Loiret is a river, a tributary of the River Loire itself, and I only mention this because I have not knowingly encountered it - although I have passed through the Loiret department of France often in my travels from Dieppe to locations further South in France.

On this year's journey, from Dieppe to the Haute-Loire,  we were to pass through Loiret yet again. The river we encountered was again the Loire itself, not necessarily through choice because we followed several other tributaries of the Loire on our travels, but because it just happened to be there on our route. As was Briare, a town that I had not previously heard of, but as a stopping off point for a couple of nights on the way South, it certainly fitted out needs.

A dutch barge in the attractive marina connecting to Canal de Briare and the Canal Latéral à la Loire
At the junction of two canals and with the River Loire itself flowing through it, Briare turned out to be a relatively busy tourist destination. And with the local festival about to arrive in town, we were catching it at a busy time, but it still seemed quiet compared to proper touristy towns in France.

A popular restaurant in Briare - photographed on the day of the local festival - lots of German flags - and kilts - in town, and we never figured out why!
Waterways in Briare - the Canal de Briare links the River Loire with the River Loing and through that the Seine.
We took several walks along the banks of the Loire
This Loire River sunset was photographed from our camper

We took a drive to the nearby town of Chatillon-sur-Loire. Arriving just after noon, we discovered just how sleepy French towns could be, with practically everything shut for three hours from noon until 3 o'clock.
Every French town seems to have a public toilet somewhere. In Chatillon-sur-Loire there were also murals of figures including past inhabitants scattered around the town.
A fine Citroen DS parked conveniently in the centre of town.

 This is a mural of Robert Louis Stevenson. Apparently he died in Chatillon-sur-Loire.

This is a roadside border of wild flowers - such a change from the usual more formal presentation
A darker image - and still pulling strong - a horse butcher's shop
Finally, back to Briare for another riverside walk and a modest meal out.

Shirley striding along the Loire - if it seems narrow then that's because the main flow is on the other side of that island
A Cidre de Breton - served de rigour in the appropriate cup!
These and other images from yet another visit to France in the campervan can be found on my site - Photos from Loiret, France