Sunday, May 31, 2015

Fêtes des Mères 2015

Here is one of my wife's Amboise "babies" wishing her a happy Mother's Day (which is today in France).

Friday, May 29, 2015

arch-itecturally speaking

This is one of my favorite doors in Amboise and on this day I was lucky to catch it without a car parked in front.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

stopping to smell the flowers

That's just what I did on this sunny day in May along the bike trail in Amboise.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

the grape press

This old grape press has been retired and put out to pasture, or in the case, out to the vineyard.  It's along one of the wine routes in the area and is next to an informational map of the area.  It's also along one of my favorite biking routes and so I have passed by here many times.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

the golden field

These little wildflowers make for a nice golden carpet in front of these cedars.  And here is a closer look at them:

Sunday, May 24, 2015

the backroad

Even when there is not a bike path, there are many backroads in the area like this.  There's very little traffic and the scenery through the many vineyards is wonderful.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

a nature reserve along the Loire

I visited this area (espace naturel de L'Île de Bondésir) a few days ago for the first time (a 45 minute ride by bike from Amboise).  It's a magnificent undeveloped area along the Loire and open to the public.  Here you can follow trails and discover wonderful views of the river as well as a wide variety of plants and birds.  In today's view, you see an area that changes dramatically with the water level of the river.  When it's high, this is mostly under water and the trees on the right are on an island.

Friday, May 22, 2015

trumpeting spring

I found these happy campers next to the bike path in Amboise.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

the wood pile

After zooming past this nice pile of firewood on my bike, I did a quick turn around.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

they're back!

I've been anxiously waiting the return of the coqueclicots (poppies),  I found these next to the bike path in front of this field of wheat.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

first bike ride of the year

It's been an extraordinarily busy year for me so this was the first real venture out.  It was a beautiful day and the locust trees were in magnificent full bloom.

Monday, May 18, 2015

hold that thought

The vineyards are waking up and soon there will be little flowers and then the grapes.  I spotted this beautiful vine on my first real bike ride of the season yesterday.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

climb every mountain

It's great to find flower beds on the side of the levee, so I don't have to squat down, or lie down, to get the sky in the backgound.  With respect to the title, look closely.

Friday, May 15, 2015

la fleur de ciboulette

Not only do we love having fresh chives growing on our terrace, but at this time of year we also enjoy seeing their tiny little flowers.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

flying high over rue Nationale

Recently, 22 of these fantastic colorful banners were installed over the length of  rue Nationale.  They not only welcome the tourists to stroll the length of this pedestrian street but also add to the celebration of the 500th anniversary of the coronation of François I in 1515.  They look wonderful fluttering in the breeze,  Even their shadows add interest to the overall effect.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

farewell to the tulips

Earlier this week, I had to say the same for the wisteria.  Spring is somewhat winding down but there will always be new flowers planted here thanks to the town of Amboise.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Monday, May 11, 2015

la glycine, au revoir

The show of wisteria is pretty much over for this year in Amboise, but they had a good run.  They'll be back.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

the window for Anne de Bretagne

This beautiful window in the state room at the Château d'Amboise honors the queen who lived there while married to the King Charles VIII (from 1491 to 1498).

Saturday, May 9, 2015

the old factory

I found interesting these patterns made by this old factory next to the train station.

Friday, May 8, 2015

La Fête de la Victoire

Today, France remembers the end of World War II in Europe. It was 70 years ago today that Nazi Germany signed the unconditional surrender to the Allies.  La Fête de la Victoire is a National Holiday.

I happened upon this perfectly restored jeep right around the corner from our home.

Thursday, May 7, 2015


Crinkly is a stabile-mobile created by Alexander Calder in 1969.  It stands at 3 meters 30 (10 feet) and was first installed in Amboise in 1970.  Calder himself chose the location which is next to the high school.  It's a hike from downtown but it's a nice ride on a bike.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

a royal door

This enormous door is to entry of the tour Minimes (its exterior seen here).  It's one of the two spiral ramp towers that allowed horse drawn carriages to ascend from street-level to château-level.  The door is, I'm guessing, more than 4 meters / 13 feet in height.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

an iris spring

My spring postings would not be complete without the royal iris photo.

Monday, May 4, 2015

suit up, it's Monday

OK, maybe your job isn't this rough but for the fellow who wore this type of suit in the 16th century it was necessary.  His job was to defend the entrance to the château d'Amboise.  Although happily in retirement, I can remember work days when I wish I had had one of these.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

the chapel

The chapel at Chenonceau is still magnificent even on a heavy overcast day like this one.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

le muguet de mai

In France, the lily of the valley symbolizes international Labor day.  On the first of May vendors are everywhere selling these wonderful smelling little flowers.

Friday, May 1, 2015

City Daily Photo Theme Day - "Revolution"

On the grounds of Clos Lucé, many of Leonardo Da Vinci's inventions have been realized as models that kids can explore and operate.  In this example, these energetic and charming* kids are turning the wheel to make the screw above rotate.  Leonardo's design for a helicopter was not implemented in his time and, according to engineering analysis, it would not have flown.  In any case, the first helicopter to fly in 1936 can still point to this 500 year old design as its inspiration.

Many of Da Vinci's designs and inventions could be considered revolutionary.  And this one actually revolves so this photo has several connections to today's City Daily Photo Theme "revolution".  To see how the other CDP bloggers interpreted this theme click here.

*OK I confess.  These are two of my grandkids.