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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

We’ve had a few quiet days, no concerts in the nearby square, just time with friends, Sunday morning church, work, market strolls…life in the south of France.
After church on Sunday Kirk returned to work – his office is set up in the study/second bedroom and oh is he using it this trip (as I write I’m listening to him talking on a conference call)!
Before coming home to make lunch I walked through the monthly brocante (vintage) market on Place des Prêcheurs….not to buy, just to look…at linens rippling in the breeze,

copper polished to a ruddy shine,

lots of art and books, and even an accordion offered by the relaxed vendors.

Monday morning, time to shop for dinner with friends tonight…would you believe I went to all three Monoprix grocery stores in town, several stalls at the daily market, Picard (the frozen food emporium) and the bakery?! Tried to get everything done as early as possible – today threatens to be the hottest day of the entire summer! The lions on the Rotonde fountain seem to enjoy basking in the sun.

and just across the street is the finally-finished Apple store, with requisite line out front. Looks much like the one in Reston Town Center, back in Virginia!

Xavier and Michelle are our guests tonight, and although it’s still 90 outside, we keep comfortably cool in our 18th century home – the thick walls (and a good fan or two circulating the air) do a good  job of insulation, unlike more recent construction.
Xavier, a good friend who owns, renovates, and maintains a couple of apartment buildings in the historic center, has been such a great help from the very beginning of our Aix home ownership. We’re thankful to finally have the opportunity to renovate the kitchen and bathroom so in between dinner and dessert we look at the rooms together. Tomorrow we have appointments with two contractors, and Michelle knows another whom we’ll also have come view the projects while we’re here. We’ve got the kitchen figured out, but the bathroom is a mystery….WHY was it designed and built in two levels? We’d like it all on one level – is that possible?

Kirk and Xavier pull out the measuring tape and measure inside and out, peering out the windows to see what’s what, and we remember that one of the huge old keys we were given when we bought the house opens a door on the common stairway that is “ours” and used to be a communal washroom/laundry. Maybe there will be a clue to why the bathroom’s designed this way….but they get the door open and it’s now all bricked up inside. Another mystery!

Tuesday’s a major market day in Aix, and although we don’t need a thing (lots of good leftovers from last night’s feast!), we have to at least walk through – it’s always a delight of sights, with a rainbow of colors  – light cotton Morroccan Foutas that can be used as beachtowels, shawls, tablecoverings, throws,

flavors – tender, smoky sundried tomatoes – so much better than what I find in the US

and smells – lavender crafted into pillows, dolls, and sachets

And we end up with a new rug for the bathroom – a deal at 5 €!
There are many lanes that get us to and from the markets, but we always like to walk by one of our favorite spots, Place de Trois Ormeaux, where the rosé’s always chilling in the summer,

and at the moment an adorable toddler’s chilling too.
Happy in Aix….