Thursday, 9 June 2016


Day 3 - Arles
Thursday, June 9th, 2016

The word for today is in honour of the Mistral Winds which blow in this region of Provence about 120 days per year.  They blow from the north and offer a lovely cooling breeze on a warm day.  They have also made it difficult for the folks who wanted to sit out on the sundeck this afternoon and more than once Paul has had to go running after his hat as the winds took it off his head.

We had a very enjoyable dinner last night and I think most of our group was in bed by shortly after dinner and fast asleep.  We woke up refreshed this morning and ready for another great day
The ship left Avignon early this morning and sailed to Tarascon which is about a 25 minute bus ride to Arles, a town famous for many things including the Dutch painter Vincent Van Gogh who lived there and painted many scenes which became famous paintings.

This is a copy of the painting of the courtyard of the hospital, in the courtyard of the hospital,
where he went when he cut off his ear.

Arles has amazing architectural highlights and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site (WHS). The city’s vibrant colours and striking quality of light that have inspired many artists. Arles is also the site of some impressive Roman ruins, including Les Arènes - an arena that seats 20,000 and is still in use; and the 15th century Church of Saint-Trôphime. 

Some folks came back to ship for lunch while quite a few chose to stay in Arles for a few more hours and enjoy this quintessential French city.  Paul and I enjoyed meandering the quaint streets and sitting at a table at a sidewalk café where we had the most fascinating “conversation” with an elderly man.  Our French is limited as was his English but through a few words and sign language we found out he was originally from Portugal, had lived in Arles 34 years and he strong views that religion could be very destructive.  

My lost luggage has returned and tonight we will enjoy the captain’s cocktail party before dinner.  I am very happy to have something different to wear!

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