Friday 12th Maury and Bugarach

A brilliant mountain day — deep blue sky, warm sun, birds cheeping –   what more could one want –   well a fresh baguette delivered to the door and a pain au raisin.Some lovely Bach playing and Soph has checked in and is safe and happy.

Some of you may recall back in December that the catastrophic apocalyse was forecast by the Mayan calendar.Sadly they did not survive to witness this non event but here in France there are odd things afoot. One forgets it is an old old culture and these people, despite various invasions, are the aborigines of the land. Thick layerings of whakos or”esoterics” from around the world made Bugarach and its famous mountain the centre of mass visitations last December –  from New Agers, interested bystanders, and journalists from as far away as Tokyo. The police and powers that be took it all very seriously, closing the village to all traffic from the 19th onwards. Seems there was a real concern that there might be mass suicides!

The mountain is the highest peak in the Corbiéres,  ( 1230m) and is geologically fascinating in that the higher layers are older than the lower ones, due to an “overthrust”. The top is millions of years older than the base,  so it is known as the “upside down” mountain. And within its bowels are a race of aliens living in space ships, who were supposed to come forth on Dec 21st last year and save all the Bugarachians. Well it didn’t happen – but the odd balls are still about, awaiting the next catastrophe.

ImageBugarach is dead centre –  taken along from near Maury.

Maury is the town on the main road through to St Paul, where you turn up the goat track to Lesquerde. The drive down on a sunny morning is wonderful with good light emphasising the weathering on the opposite side of the valley. I don’t seem to be able to stop taking photos of Canigou –  and she changes her attire and presents a different face every day.

ImageImageImageImageMaury is a mess at the moment with road works making the narrow main road almost impassable. I had a coffee there –  nice little restaurant that warrants a visit but the French really dont do coffee well –  invariably cold and weak. There must be an artist in Maury who specialises in trompe l’oeil –   the painting of murals that trick the eye. Our pretty little bus stop boasts a special example of this art.

ImageImageMaury in the valley with Queribus Castle visible. Turn off here for Lesquerde.

Finally a couple of the village from up near the Co-op in the morning sun.

ImageImage

My place is at the extreme left, below the line of the mountain.

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