One of the sights I saw last week with our visitors from California was the château at Chenonceaux, which is called « le château de Chenonceau » in French. I don't know why the name of the village is a plural form, with a final -x, but the name of the castle is in the singular. I think it's just one of those things designed to trip up foreigners.
I hadn't been to Chenonceau in 5 or 6 years. It's one of those places about which you might say: “Nobody goes there any more — it's too crowded.” It was crowded last Wednesday, but it wasn't mobbed. I enjoyed the visit. We went through all the rooms in the château that are open to the public.
I have a lot more pictures but today I'm posting only two. I noticed there were a lot of swallows' nests under the ledges on the upper sections of the old tower of the château. The gift shop used to be located in this tower, but now it's closed and a new bigger, more modern shop is located at the entrance to the property, in the building where tickets for admission are sold. You can't stop progress. The old shop had more charm.
Swallows were swooping all around the tower, catching, I assume, insects to feed to chicks in the mud nests you see here. There are many nests like these on the walls of buildings in Saint-Aignan and other towns and villages too.