Rocama-very-dour

Many apologies to anyone following us real-time as we’ve been unable to post for some days. In fact an email has flooded in from a Mrs Trellis of North Wales asking when we’re going to stop enjoying ourselves so much and get on with some blogging. Well Mrs Trellis, we’re very sorry but we were struck by a combination of poor signal, no wifi, and several large glasses of red wine. We’re sure you’ll understand. We intend to make up for it now but rather than give you one large one we plan to send you three smaller ones as we wouldn’t want to block your pipeline. IT support can be so expensive.

A rainy arrival
A rainy arrival

We’d just arrived in Rocamadour as we finished our last post, in torrential rain. In fact this was our first view of the town; still dramatic but a bit washed out. I didn’t even get out of the driving seat for this one! After a nice cup of tea the clouds lifted for a while and allowed us to explore. The setting was amazing, the town looks as though a child has scattered their toy houses down a rocky slope leaving some of them hanging on for dear life. Sadly the combination of poor weather and the fact we were there on a Sunday meant the tour itself was a little underwhelming as everything was closed. Rocamadour has been a place of pilgrimage for centuries. We walked up and down the same flight of marble stairs – le Grand Escalier – as King Louis, King Louis, King Louis and King Louis had done before us. I can’t remember which order but I think it went VII, IX, XI, XIV. We visited the chapel of the Madonna Noir, to see a small black statue of the Virgin Mary said to have miraculous properties. We found it quite moving to sit in a chapel carved from the rock, very ornate with candles burning and a white-robed priest kneeling in prayer at the altar.

vImg_4023Bringing things back to their usual secular level I’m afraid we banked a pic of the town (in case the weather continued awful) by swiping a postcard from a stand and photographing it! We did put it back after guv, honest! Sharp-eyed readers may have noticed the Autumn colours so we thought we’d better come clean. Thankfully the weather improved dramatically the following day so we were able to get the shots below. Our next overnight stop was to be in Najac on the Aveyron River so we went via Figeac for lunch. Figeac is another town with a medieval centre packed with half-timbered houses. I seriously impressed Gill by pointing out that the upper floors of the old houses didn’t seem to have windows, just gaps where windows should be. I explained that Figeac was a leather-producing centre in the Middle Ages and the hides would have been hung from these galleries to cure. What I didn’t point out was that I had just read it in the guide book over lunch…

Figeac - a replica of the Rosetta Stone complete with inscriptions in slate
Figeac – a replica of the Rosetta Stone complete with inscriptions in slate

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Rocamadour
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Rocamadour
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Rocamadour
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Chapel of the Black Madonna, Rocamadour
About Ken Tomlinson 207 Articles
Semi-retired biker, blogger and world’s best grandad. Doesn’t take life too seriously. Discovered motorhoming in 2015, sold up and downsized to fund more travels. Now with added Yorkshire.

2 Comments on Rocama-very-dour

  1. Sue and I rode around this area a couple of years ago staying at the Riders Rest (central Massif). Lovely places to see and some great places where the French holiday by the river. Enjoy!

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