Posts Tagged ‘France’

Just as Moses came down from the mountain, so did we (although not with any commandments), following a winding road that looked inviting.  As I previously mentioned, just as we were ready to turn around, we spotted a sign for “Lautenbach.”  As that’s the maiden name of my s-i-l (the one married to my brother, not the one I was visiting), I asked to stop so I could take a photo of the sign.  Then we spotted an attractive church steeple and another beautiful detour was begun.

Lautenbach is a very German name but this part of France, the Alsace, has been part of Germany more than once.  The town is beautiful and in the center is St. Michael Collegiate Church.  Although the church looks old, as tourisme-alsace.com says:

“The former collegiate church of Saint Michael-and-Gangolphe underwent many transformations over the centuries. The nave probably dates from the 11th century, the transept, the choir and the flat chevet from the 12th century. Its vaulted porch is one of the finest in the region. The building is, however, completely restored in 1859. Decorations and additions, such as the towers, implemented by the architect of the 19th century, are questionable although they do not alter the overall aesthetic. Guided tours for groups all year round on appointment at the Guebwiller Tourism Office.”

No matter when it was built or that is was restored, it’s beautiful and worth a visit.  The pipe organ has been classified as a historic monument.  Let me share a few photos and let you decide.

© janet m. webb

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Finally!  It’s lunch time.  We’ll eat at Chalet-hôtel du Grand Ballon, (you can view this in English by clicking the box on the upper right), but first we have to make a stop at the Famille Riche store, filled aromatically and beautifully with all things honey-related.  The family raises the bees, using the honey in a variety of products.  My s-i-l gifted me with a jar of honey, almonds in honey, and a beeswax Christmas candle.  I bought several trios of honey-based soaps as gifts. If you have a minute, take a look at their website.  You’ll find beautiful things.  The almonds in honey taste wonderful on chèvre or foie gras.  You can take my word on that!  🙂

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2017 was a good year for roses. Climbing roses were everywhere, some climbing two stories.  They were gorgeous!  This spray was somewhat smaller, but it was beautiful and in a place where we could stop so I could get a photo.  🙂

© janet m. webb

We wandered down from the mountains and just as we were ready to turn around, we came upon a sign the caught my attention because its name, Lautenbach, was the same as the maiden name of my s-i-l in Arizona.  After a stop to take a photo of the sign, we ventured into the town, which turned out to be a small jewel.  But this is Thursday Doors, so let’s take a look at a few doors I sighted while near the church (upcoming post).  Arches were in force here, just as they are in the Franche-Comté, and I know many of you love arches.

© janet m. webb

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Flying below the fog but not below the rain, the damp chill eventually found its way into our bones.  That meant time for a hot drink, but it was mid-morning Wednesday and the few places we saw were closed.  Although Le Paquis des Hautes Fees didn’t appear to be open, it was and we went in, thankful to get out of the wind and cold.  The view looked decidedly better from inside.  🙂

© janet m. webb

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© janet m. webb

Many villages in France have wonderful floral decorations and there’s even a designation for those with the most attractive displays.  But sometimes you find beautiful flowers tucked into corners or off to the side.  I saw these in Mélisey as we walked back to our parking spot after yet another wonderful lunch at Chez Mimi.  What a glorious sight!

© janet m. webb

If you’d like to read more about the towns awarded the Ville Fleurie designation, go to France This Way by clicking here.  The author says:

The ‘towns and villages in bloom’ award (ville fleurie) is given to French places that make a special effort to create a pleasant natural environment for both residents and visitors by focussing on plants, flowers and open areas within the town.

Even if a town doesn’t have this designation, you’ll find plenty of flowers and arrangements in many places and of course, you can always keep checking on my blog.  🙂