Summer in Aix 2014

Interested in a Music and Markets Tour? We’d love to hear from you!  How about an unforgettable holiday with us at  New Years’ Jazz in Italy

Our overnight at beautiful Hotel les Lodges Saint Victoire put us the closest we’ve been to Cezanne’s mountain, and an afternoon drive and walk got us even closer.

We continued to be surprised at the depth of the countryside feel – just minutes from bustling Aix. Loved this vintage road sign directing us back to the city.

And just down the road, an old 2 Chevaux – we do see more of those in the country than in the cities.

We got a lazy start Friday – enjoying a lavish continental breakfast on the terrace of the hotel, then driving southeast to the Bandol area for lunch at Mary Lou and Ken’s.

Mary Lou’s latest novel in the Verlaque and Bonnet Mysteries  series featuring an Aix lawyer and law professor will be out in a few days, and we heard juicy details of the next one in the works. When we first met, Mary Lou and Ken were living in Aix, but have settled in happily to life in the country – who wouldn’t love this vineyard – surrounded beauty?!

On our way back to Aix we stop at Suffrene, a recommended Bandol vineyard tucked beneath the hilltop village of Le Castellet

to pick up a bottle to bring to our neighbors this evening.

We get back to Aix just in time to climb the stairs to the Oordobadis, with whom we hiked last week. Ali leads us to the table, describing the apertif feast as “Colors of Provence”  – gorgeous, and delicious too!

We’ve been blessed with such wonderful neighbors in Aix – thankful!
Saturday finds us back at the market, picking up all that we need for lunch with friends. Walking under the clock tower, where a mime entertains, we pass through the flower market,

where a table of flower children begins their fun early in the day.

Fresh flowers on the mantel, lunch all ready, we await our guests…

and soon we’re sharing stories  with Jean Marc and Kristin (whose French Word a Day is a favorite of all of us francophiles) and Anne and Aldo.

JM and Kristin brought the most delicious ice cream we’ve EVER tasted for dessert…6 glass pots of pure and intense flavors – passion fruit, pistachio, dark chocolate and more. What a treat!

Thanks, friends,

for traveling from hours away to join us!
Tonight is the first night of Aix’s last festival of the summer, Musique dans la Rue, and Anne and Aldo stay a bit longer to catch the first couple of concerts with us  – first, medieval tunes in the courtyard of the Hôtel de Ville,

then a lively and colorful chorale in the Place de l’Archveché – with an impressive Star Wars rendition.

Each half hour from 6 to 9 pm there are two or three choices in some of Aix’s most beautiful squares, cloisters, and courtyards.
We say goodbye to Anne and Aldo and finish our evening with a Beethoven Quintet in the St. Catherine of Sienna courtyard, a new venue for this year,

followed by a Soirée Ravel by one of the best pianists we’ve heard – glorious music! And all just steps from Ambiance d’Aix!