Monday, May 30 I left Martine's mansion in Cantarel with the intention of visiting the abbey of Beaulieu-en-Rouergue after having done the administrative work not done on Sunday. Alas when I arrived on the scene what was not my disappointment to find that the abbey was under renovation and that at best safety shoes were needed to enter the site. I found a parking lot on the D926 at the Caylus exit.
Tuesday, May 31, I visited the magnificent Collegiate Church of St-Martin in Montpezat, the highlight of which are the sixteen tapestries from Flanders from the 16th century, in perfect preservation, describing the life of Saint-Martin. A file gives the visitor a detailed description of each of them. A photo exposes the page of the apparition of Christ in a dream at St-Martin. The tapestries are protected from light by heavy automated curtains. The side chapels have statues either in polychrome or in alabaster. This visit was a delight. I continued my journey to Lauzerte, a medieval village perched on a hill. Alas, the steep course got the better of my physical condition, I threw in the towel at Place des Cornières. I found a bivouac near the waste containers!
Wednesday, June 01 I will travel through the Pays de Serres, recommended by the Green Guide, from Lauzerte to Lauzerte. The first stop was in Brassac to see the 12th century Château de Brassac. Alas, it is at the end of a dirt track with a single track, long reverse, fenced by a gate with the mention Private Property, circulate there is nothing to see. In addition a sign indicated that the renovation was supported by the Ministry of Culture, well see the hillbilly taxpayer is only good enough to pay taxes! The Michelin Green Guide is obsolete, 2019 publication. In Bourg-de-Visa, a Baltard-style iron hall, a good one! Near the church a dovecote-tower that the natives of this lost hole do not know of its existence! In Montaigu-de-Quercy a 19th century church whose bell tower is not in line with the church nave, interesting, isn't it! Finally, in Pervillac, the Romanesque church contains 15th century murals. Arriving in Touffailles I parked the truck in front of the town hall where I bivouacked. The day was beautiful on bumpy departmental roads. In Touffailles there is an Internet connection but not very fast, rurality of deep France.
Thursday, June 02 at 9:00 a.m. I began the visit of the Saint-Pierre de Moissac abbey which is almost a thousand years old and whose cloister is the oldest in Christianity. The southern portal of the 12th century presents a tympanum illustrating a passage of the apocalypse. The chapels have preserved polychrome wooden sculptures, a Virgin of Mercy, a Flight into Egypt and a remarkable Entombment. Then I walked through the cloister whose 76 capitals are historiated with the Old and New Testaments as well as the lives of the martyrs. It took me nearly three hours to inventory the treasures of religious art. Certainly I took my time with many rest stops. Fortunately it was not the horde of tourists, but probably pilgrims on the way to Compostela. The day was pleasant. I bivouacked on a rest area near Sérat, D813.
|Church abbatial St-Pierre in Moissac|
Friday, June 03 I visited the historic center, the medieval city, of Agen as well as the Saint-Caprais cathedral and the Ste-Foy church. Unfortunately, a mistake during the transfer deleted the photos of the two places of worship. I still had to visit the Museum of Fine Arts exhibiting, in particular, paintings by Goya, Courbet, Corot, etc. Alas the spiral staircase put me off. Many monuments are still unsuitable for people with motor disabilities. I found a bivouac in the parking lot of the Estillac cemetery.
|Medieval quarter of Agen|
Saturday, June 04 two Romanesque churches are on the program of the visit on a rainy and foggy day in the Brulhois. The church of Moirac is representative of the Romanesque style of Occitania of the 12th century with ornate capitals as well as carved woodwork including a panel of the decapitation of Holofernes by Judith cephalocope like Salome from the biblical tradition. The church of Layrac is less imposing with its single nave and the canopy of the choir. However the upgrade of the chancel unearthed a Romanesque mosaic of Samson wrestling with the lion. The reader can refer to the documented articles of Wikipedia.
|Église de Moirax|
Sunday, June 05 was a convolution of about 83 km in the Pays d'Albret, former duchy of Albret, from Nérac to Nérac, capital of the eponymous duchy. Jeanne d'Albert was the mother of Henri de Navarrre, future king of France, under the name of Henri IV establishing the Bourbon dynasty. It was a hunt for old medieval houses, Romanesque bridges, Romanesque style churches and fortified bastides. The central square of the villages was occupied by the local fruit and vegetable market escaping the vertiginous rise in prices. The weather was overcast and the temperature cool. Back in Nérac, I set up my bivouac again in the deserted car park, on this Sunday, at Intermarché.