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A Working Holiday
Chapter 1: We Leave for France
Chapter 10: Looking for Mr. Goodstone
Chapter 11: A mission to la Clape
Chapter 12: Dinner at Château de Lignan
Chapter 13: Antiques and plunder
Chapter 14: The vintner next door
Chapter 15: The rooftops of Nézignan-l'Évêque
Chapter 2: Comes the crusade
Chapter 3: The 13 colonies
Chapter 4: Our curtains are dreadful
Chapter 5: Naked beaches
Chapter 6: A visit to Château des Estanilles
Chapter 7: A pilgrimage to Toulouse
Chapter 8: Remembering Collioure
Chapter 9: The priest and the mayor
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A Day Trip Itinerary...print this out   print the content item
A Taste of Provence: Climbing Cézanne's Mont
Time to destination: 2 hours (but it makes a lovely weekend away) Every student of art history will recognize the limestone bulk of Mount Ste-Victoire, made immortal in the paintings of Cézanne. The mountain is austere, dramatic, thatched with herbs and wildflowers -- and surprisingly easy to climb, with well-marked trails.Puyloubier backs up to it. Just outside town, Domaine St. Ser makes superior wines. The tasting room out back offers a breathtaking view of the mountain while you sip and judge for yourself their seven wines. I left with a case of the most expensive red, which I think will mature nicely. It was already interesting, if still a bit loud. The Michelin one-star restaurant in nearby Beaurecueil introduced us to St. Ser.

Honeys at the huge Saturday morning
street market in Aix-en-Provence, a half
hour from Puyloubier.
We made a weekend of it, staying at Villa Chapelet (04-42-66-34-78; cell 06-24-49-20-00). Joséphine Coutrot's charmingly restored old home turned B&B features a terraced swimming pool, bicycles, and classic shade-dappled French breakfasts including her own preserves. She works the land herself (grapes, olives). French-born, she perfected her English during many years living in Ghana. Her Web site: http://villachapelet.monsite.wanadoo.fr/
From our house, go to the Autoroute, the A9. Head toward Montpellier. Stay on the A9 towards Nimes. Just before Nimes, take A54 toward Arles, then Salon-de-Provence, then Aix-en-Provence. A54 turns into A8 at Salon-de-Provence. Take the A8 to exit 32, follow the N7, take either the D57 or the D12 to Puyloubier. At our house in France, see the R18 map.
Also in the vicinity, but by the sea: the Villa Heliotropes, a truly outstanding B&B we've stayed at. It is well situated for exploring the Provencal coast. Near Toulon, midway between Marseilles and Saint Tropez. Luscious rooms overlook the Mediterranean. http://www.villa-heliotropes.com/
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