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tedgale trip report on se and sw france

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This is the start of my trip report, typed by someone too tired at this point in a long day even to manage capitalization in his title. Already today we have been in Toulouse and Paris and Montreal, before reaching home in Ottawa.

Wonderful weather for most of our trip (low 20s C. or low 70s F.), though we had 3 or 4 days of cloud toward the end.

Though we flew to Toulouse via Paris, we ended up mostly east of there. Long story, to be recounted in a subsequent chapter of this report.

Our base for week 1 was Uzes -- a jumping off point for the Alpilles, the Drome and the gorges de l'Ardeche.

We rented a house through French Connections(www.frenchconnections.co.uk).

This was a very happy choice, through which we met Maggie Oliver, who handles the 3-storey property we rented.

Maggie also does occasional B&B in her own "drop-dead chic" townhouse in Uzes.

She recommended, among local restaurants, a new one called Les 80 jours -- a recommendation we fully endorse. The restaurant is in the old town, in a stone building within whose ground-floor arched rooms they have created a smart bar and a good, not terribly splashy but very professional restaurant.

We also enjoyed L' hostellerie provencale and its restaurant La Parenthese. This is in the newly classified district of the Bourgades (grande bourgade, petite bourgade) where we were staying.

What we most enjoyed in Uzes was the practice of holding open houses, vins d'honneur and gallery openings -- a chance to meet and mix with the local denizens of this perfect, cosmopolitan community.

(Imagine any community having an Andre Gide parking garage...!!)

More details and complete references tomorrow, when my brain clears.....

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