Sunday, June 16, 2013

Marie Maillot

As may click on an image to enlarge for better viewing......

I had corresponded with Marie (upper photo) for about a year before we went to France.  I dreamed and daydreamed about the the Gite before we left for Europe....How would it be to live in a troglodyte cottage?  A cottage built right into a cliff face high up in the Luberons overlooking the vineyards and villages of Provence.  This would be the most unique place we stayed while in France.

Marie was an ex advertising guru in Paris for several years.  She had visited Provence several times both on business and pleasure.  She had become bitten and infected with the romance, climate and hospitality of Provence and it's people.  She finally reached a point where she knew she had to give up the high stress metropolitan life of Paris and move to Provence.  The infection was spread so completely through her psyche that she even gave up her marriage to satisfy the call of Provence.  She found two cottages, three miles from Menerbes located at the end of a one lane rough rock road atop a mountain.  One cottage was built under an overhang of the a cliff-face and the second was built into the cliff itself.  She would take the stand alone cottage under the cliff as her own living space and rent out the cottage that was bult into the cliff.  The name of the cottage was "Le Refuge" which just as you might guess meant shelter or refuge.  The history of Le Refuge was what sparked my imagination to begin with.  This cottage was built in the 1700's in such a remote location in the hills of the Luberons in a sparsely populated part of Provence that it served as a refuge or hideout for the French Resistance Soldiers during WWII at the time the Nazis were dispatched throughout France.  The location was never uncovered by the Germans as they moved through Provence on the way to Aix and Arles during the war.  At 70 years young....Marie still rents out her Gite every year to seekers such as ourselves who want a unique taste of Provence.  The dates fill up by April or so each year and sell out everyday up until late October.

I will post more pictures of the Gite and Maire's cottage in upcoming posts.


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