Saturday, 16 April 2011

Missing Markets and New Monuments.

As many of my blogs have gone on about markets, my trusty readers will know by now that I love visiting markets, but what I love even more than a normal market is an animal market. The smells and sounds take me back to my summer holidays in South Wales as a child at the cattle market in Camarthen with my maternal grand father. So when we heard that there was a cattle market in Charolles, still in the old style, we just had to go. It took some finding out which day it was on, but eventually we found reference to it being on the second Wednesday of the months January, February, March and April. We had missed the January and February days and I was in the UK in March, so this week was our last chance for the year. Off we went. On entering Charolles, a suspect building was sited just opposite La Maison du Charolais (a “museum” dedicated to this wonderful breed of cattle) but as there was not a farmer or cattle truck in sight, we dismissed it as the wrong location. We asked an elderly couple a little further along the road and they sent us back to aforementioned empty market building. Not one of the people wandering around the building knew anything about a cattle market and although the poster on the wall (dating from several years ago) said the market stated at 10.00 there was nothing there at all.

We went into La Maison du Charolais to find out the truth. The truth is that the market shut down years ago. Being so close to the market in St Christophe en Brionnais one of these markets had to go and it was Charolles. Ah well, it was a nice trip on a sunny day and it was almost time for lunch so we went in search of a restaurant. We knew of one in
Beaubery so that’s where we headed. The fondly remembered restaurant had turned into a café but we had a little stroll around the town any way. The main car park has a spectacular view over the countryside and as the sky had not yet turned hazy we could see literally for miles and miles. We had work in Beaubery a few years ago and had driven through the town on many occasions noticing that there was a monument to the Résistance. As the job entailed trailing a trailer, heading up to the monument was never an option, but today it was possible and as we had all the time in the world that is exactly what we did. What an impressive sight, a huge cross of Lorraine, the symbol of the Résistance dominates a summit way above the town so the views from up there are even more amazing than from the town itself. The names of the local Résistance fighters killed during the war are listed on the memorial along with the words: Croire, Lutter, Vaincre. Believe, struggle, succeed.

Our day was starting to have the theme “views”, so after a superb lunch in another restaurant just outside Beaubery centre, we went to Suin, a place we have heard about but never got round to visiting. Now if you are looking for a 360 degree view, this is it. It was quite mesmerising being that high up and yet still on the ground, it was almost as if you were looking down into the valley from an aeroplane. There is a little non-descript church just below the summit but on the summit itself there is a viewing platform and a very pretty Madonna. This is the place people come to fly in their hang gliders, it was too windy on Wednesday sadly as it must be a real sight when there are people literally just walking off the edge and catching a thermal.

Even though we didn’t see the market, we enjoyed some unexpected sites on our day out.

For details of our holiday accommodation see La Tuilerie Website

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