Monday, April 7, 2008

Spectacle Equestre de la Camargue

Even tho the title is in French, I think it needs no translation. After a dreary winter where we hardly ever went out, we've now been out twice in 2 weeks (remember our Jazz concert last weekend). As we approach summer, there will be even more to blog about, something which I'm looking forward to - to introduce more of this area where I live.

Camargue is a region in the south of France, just west of Marseille, that is made up of wetlands, pastures, dunes & salt flats. It provides grazing for sheep, cattle & horses (there is even a breed of horse known as Camargue) - cowboy country. When we were there 2 years ago, the regional park blew me away. It's unlike the rest of France. The land is very flat & you just drive past ranch after ranch & all you see are horses, bulls & flamingos - I've never seen so many flamingos in the wild before.

The fair in Aubenas is a yearly event & this is the first time we're attending. There are tents of booths, play area for children, many exhibits & drinking stations (very much a social event) but we were only interested in the horse show. The arena is within a big tent with a restaurant occupying half the space. I was surprised at how crowded the restaurant was, X figured most of the patrons were probably out of towners (we did notice a lot of "foreign" license plates in the parking lot). I mean why would anybody want to have a meal next to an arena with sand flying as the horses gallop past ? Well obviously not everyone thinks like me.

The children really enjoyed the show - we went with X's niece (she was particularly thrilled cos one of the performers, a feisty lass handling the horses, is her age). The Girl who loves horses was just mesmerised . I have a feeling we may be paying for riding lessons as soon as she is old enough to ride. Overall it was a competent show & I left with a new found respect for horse handlers.


Beau Lotus said...

You forgot to mention the mosquitoes :-).

But I like the region very much. Like I do everywhere else in France. Beauty of this country, every region is different and beautiful.

meng said...

thought those pinkish birds only exist in the tropics!

petite fleur said...

I don't remember any mosquitoes. Maybe because we were not there in the summer.

Camargue has a wild sort of beauty.

Meng - haha just because you see them in the bird park.