Sounds and Sights of AixFriday - Sunday, May 6-8, 2011
Interested in a Music and Markets Tour? We'd love to hear from you!
The film crew has moved on, and the square next door is back to normal, with bistro tables set up around the fountain.
Yesterday we greeted a neighbor across the street, whom we had not yet met, with a 'Bonjour" from our window to his, and after chatting a bit, invited him for an aperitif this evening. Those gorgeous hydrangeas did not last the week plus that the vendor said they would, even though we followed his directions for care. Too bad - they were such stunners!
So we'll make do with some fragrant peonies, which should last at least until we leave.
We spread a tempting array of appetizers (mini caprese on toothpicks, a few puff pastry bites, prosciutto and melon on toothpicks, and endive leaves filled with gorgonzola and mascarpone) on the petite bureau, and enjoy a few hours of interesting conversation with Jean-Claude, who has owned a Paris antique shop for decades. His specialty is ceramics, and we can see the wonderful collection he has through the windows of his apartment across the street. He invites us over to his place for tomorrow evening so we'll continue getting to know each other then.
We have just enough time to walk to the Hôtel de Ville, where Medecines et Musique are offering a concert, including a Tchaikovsky trio (piano, violin and cello, the only one he wrote). In the historic Salle de Etat (Hall of State), we enjoy the beautiful trio, then improvisations by a young composer - beginning with some really lovely music he had composed as a soundtrack for a film, then arrangements of Nutcracker and Swan Lake pieces. Last of all, a trio he just completed a few days ago for piano, violin and cello. Really enjoyed his work, enough that I'd buy a CD if there were one for sale. Tired - it's almost midnight! - we walk home and fall into bed.
Saturday - another market day. Although you can buy produce and flowers every day on one square or another, the big market days are Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.
We've been tempted by the cherries, and this batch glowing in the sun is irresistable! "Are they sweet?" I ask, knowing that's it's still a little early in the season.
Yes - taste! And although it's really not as sweet & flavorful as I'd hoped, I buy a handful or two.
We've been watching Monsieur Martin paint since we first moved in to the apartment - when he was sitting at the end of our little lane, painting the adjacent Place - and love his delicate and detailed portrayals of the beautiful squares and fountains of Aix.
We choose one we've long admired, that lovely Place beside our apartment, and he carefully signs the back.
We'll proudly hang it, enjoying the view inside as well as out.
It's the first weekend of the month, when artists set up their work in front of the law school nearby.
And now, Sunday - Bon Dimanche! Bells peal from the Cathedral, echoing through our little lane - we open the window and welcome them in.
And on the first Sunday of the month, Cours Mirabeau is lined with antiquaires, so after church we peruse the booths, their treasure laid out on tables and cloths.
We've been looking for aperitif knives, and have only found large dinner knives in previous markets.
In a booth shining with polished silver, I find them - 2 perfect little knives.
"These would make a perfect Mother's Day gift " I hint, and Kirk pulls out a few euros. Merci, mon amour!
Later in the day, while Kirk is working, I walk over to the Cathedral Saint Saveur, where an organ concert fills the glorious space with music of Bach - inspiring!