Sunday 18 October 2009


Apologies for the lack of posts, we've been on holiday and with all good intentions I took the laptop, but you know how it is - the Internet cafe was shut, our lunch with friends ran over to five hours.... and, and.

And besides, other people's holiday snaps can be, well a little dull. That said we did manage to find some interesting traditional boats while we were away, like this handsome and immaculately kept cutter. The picture doesn't do justice to the cabin sides which are each cut from one piece of what looks like a local pine, wonderful grain pattern and superbly varnished.

Traditional rowing is still very popular along this coast, all the local towns seem to have variations on this type of rowing boat, and in the summer competition between the teams is very fierce.
We were staying in Marseillan, a small port on the Etang de Thau, one of several, large salt water lagoons along the Languedoc coast of France. These large shallow lagoons are perfect for oyster culture for which the region is justly famous.
The commercial boats long ago converted to engine power, but there are more than a few traditional boats like this lanteen rigged dory. I spotted it under sail, but sadly it was too far away for a good photo, but we were lucky to catch up with it in the "Port de Pechers" on our way home.
We didn't spend all of our time looking at old boats, the Mediterranean is literally "just over there", separated from the Etang by a sandy spit, twelve miles long, just a couple of hundred yards wide and almost deserted. Joe thought it was great.

Now we're back in Bursledon, the garden's covered in leaves and it's decidedly cold!!

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