For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel's sake. The great affair is to move. ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Yenne Interlude

I climbed up to the chapel of Saint Romanus...


... where I encountered these three pilgrims...


They didn't have much to say, so I bid them 'bon courage' and moved on...


On the other side of the chapel I began a steep, slippery descent down to the river valley. I was glad I had my walking poles. The views were simply breathtaking...



The pathway cut through fields of maize...


... leading me to the delightful small town of Yenne...


... where I spent the night at the Clos des Capucins, an ancient abbey dating from the 17th century. Nowadays it's a residential seminary with meeting rooms, excellent bedrooms and a canteen. I paid just over €40 for demi-pension accommodation which included a large, individual bedroom, en-suite, with a power shower and a peaceful view overlooking a grassy courtyard, a superb four course dinner with wine (it was actually more of a restaurant than a canteen, with waitress service) and breakfast the next morning. Not bad, don't you think? And, ah, the cuisine! It seems the French are genetically incapable of producing a bad meal. I ate at a table with two other pilgrims, and we had a great time. The photo shows the old part of the seminary. There's also another building - modern but sympathetically constructed - out of sight on the left, joined to the abbey by a connecting corridor...


I liked Yenne very much. Here's a collection of roofs which caught my eye...


... and here, at a café table in the centre of Yenne, I'm enjoying a beer with four other pilgrims...


There were lots of pretty corners like this in the backstreets...


... and in the church I found a coquille, carved in wood, under a seat in the choir stalls...

13 comments:

The Weaver of Grass said...

Robert, it all seems to be so peaceful - hardly another person to be seen and wall to wall sunshine.

sunny said...

Hi,your this post is really refreshing,keep it up

Dominic Rivron said...

Thanks to the internet, I now know what a coquille is. The thing over it looks strange. By the ears I would have said it was a lapin.

Did you know that there is a superstition that one should not utter the word "rabbit" on Portland Bill? (Chas and Dave do not go down well there).

Ruth said...

This is a place that lodges in the heart (like Vézelay for me). The valley with the river and cultivations is breathtaking. The abbey’s accommodations really do sound rich for the price. I think something happens in your heart when you stay in a place like that and the price is low; something is released in you to treasure it more. Those happy pilgrim faces are beautiful; too bad we can’t see yours though along with those pretty corners.

Ruth said...

Oh, and the coquille is well spotted!

George said...

Once again, the countryside is just stunning, made all the more lovely by a wonderful meal with fellow pilgrims in delightful accommodations. While I wish I had been there with you, I remain grateful that I can at least share the experiences vicariously.

am said...

Especially like the three pilgrims sculpture, the radiant fellow pilgrims, and the little carving under a seat in the choir stalls. I thought it might be a deer, as in "The Deer's Cry" and St. Patrick. Is that possible? In France?

Friko said...

the road goes on . . .
What a wonderful way to travel, your pilgrimages have opened my eyes to a world about which i knew nothing.

Goat said...

Yup, not much to add, EXCEPT THAT I'M INSANELY JEALOUS. Having given up the booze early this year, I don't know if I'd be strong-willed enough to resist a nice glass or two in such surroundings.

The Solitary Walker said...

Thanks Pat and sunny for your comments, and Dominic for your intriguing factoid about Portland Bill. Why, I wonder?

Ruth - thanks for your lovely comment. Yes, it was special, there in Yenne. It somehow makes it all the more special - and rather poignant too - knowing one is constantly moving on, and can only spend one evening and night in such a place...

George, it would have been great for you to have been there ... but, anyway, I'm glad you are enjoying some vicarious glimpses of the experience.

am - the carving is fascinating, isn't it? Not sure what it represents, whether it's a rabbit or a deer or another creature. Must investigate further...

Friko - isn't that one of the wonderful things about blogs! That they can introduce you to different worlds...

And Goat, my friend - I give up booze all the time. It's a habit of mine. Symptomatic of my weak-willed and hedonistic nature.

Kiwi Nomad 2008 said...

Robert, yet again you enthrall me with your photos and descriptions. I caught a glimpse of this kind of countryside once on a train trip out of Geneva to the south of France. I was attracted then by the views. I hope I follow in your footsteps sooner rather than later!
Margaret

Dominic Rivron said...

Re the rabbits, the answer is here:

http://www.eportland.co.uk/Content/the_quarry_superstition.asp

The Solitary Walker said...

Thanks, Margaret (Kiwi)! I'm sure you'll be there before long.