2/28 En France, Mondays are part of Le Weekend

Both Paul and I are having a problem telling ourselves we are here for a month, we don’t have to cram everything into 10/14 days.

Today in Beziers, a beautiful town with a great history, this morning we had coffee at Cafe des Arts a favourite spot, I sketched un homme, have to be quick in France not many drink  cafe a longe, I was slow and didn’t finish him, must try harder.
I love wandering around French towns on a Monday morning most shops aren’t open, Monday being an extention of le weekend, you can really look at the buildings with less distraction from the shopping opportunities. (sorry chaps girl talk)
Having visited Beziers many times, I had an idea where I wanted to paint and we walked along the boulevard were the markets are held, I’ll be back to paint the flower market. People were sitting out in the marquees provided by the cafes on Allees Paul Riquet, the temperature now 18℃ a warm wind was blowing, a complete change from the cold of yesterday.

The Park with no name in Beziers 18x13cm  Oil on Board
The Park with no name in Beziers
Oil on Board

At the bottom of the boulevard between the city centre and the SNCF station there is a lovely park on a hill with statues and trees surrounded by buildings of instantly recognisable French Architecture, if not Haussmann inspired by his style.
Strangely enough I loved the colour of the tarmac the blue grey and the reddish sandy tile at the edge of the road running thro’, the hills around here are very high in ferrous oxide almost pure burnt sienna, there was some municipal planting of pansies which gave a bit of colour variety. THere being no great gradients in the Norfolk Broads I set myself the challenge of looking downhill too.
Not used to painting small I am still  getting used to amount of paint needed on these 13x18cm boards, I enjoyed getting down the information I need and it was getting late for lunch.

13x18cm Oil on Board
Oil on Board

Paul had meandered to the SNCF station to buy a railway magazine and L’Equipe the daily French sports paper, to improve his French, and I was conscious of him being with me, and after lovely sunshine it was threatening rain (it didn’t arrive)
I packed away and we had lunch in a small cafe bar, drove back to the house and I read a book in an evening, something I haven’t done for a long time.

I need to add some more detail to the painting I did, the lights on the benches and some figures. But over all I am pleased with the feel of it.


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