A taste of home and a bit of culture

Although life here is about as good as it gets, what I really miss are my friends and family, so I was seriously excited about the arrival of my great friend Gaby and her lovely mum – my first visitors since I arrived.  After all the photos and  weeks of hearing about where I’m living, what I’m cooking, who I’m working for (and, let’s face it, the pool I’m scrubbing), it has been wonderful to actually have somewhere here so they can experience it for themself.  And I think Le Manoir did itself proud – I certainly hope so, especially as Gaby was hear to write an article about us for the Telegraph.  So, as well as feeding them to within an inch of their lives, we thought it was essential to fit in a bit of local culture, too…
First stop was Albi, to visit the huge, brick cathedral and the Toulouse-Lautrec museum, as well as lunch at Epicurien, a wander around the old town (confusingly reburbished in the mid-80s) and a browse of the shops.



 




The next day we visited two of the prettiest local bastide towns: Cordes-sur-Ciel in the Tarn and Najac, in the Aveyron.  Amazingly deserted, we had the place to ourselves, which made for an eerily quiet, but very peaceful stroll.











A visit to Le Manoir wouldn’t be complete without a lounge by the pool – and then came the only miserable part of their stay: it was time for Gaby and Dixy to leave.  Rather appropriately, it didn’t stop raining for 24 hours after they left…