We might see a little bit of sun today, but that will be the exception to the rule. I've decided to post some black-and-whites of our village in honor of the season. Actually, these photos are slightly sepia-toned.
We are spending our 11th winter here in this little hamlet outside Saint-Aignan. Last winter was long and dreary, and this one seems to be competing to see if it can outdo the last. The newer looking house in the photo above is ours. It was built in the 1960s by people who planned to retire here from Paris.
The house in the photo above is distinctly different in style from the others in the hamlet. It's built of gray stone, with battleship gray metal shutters. The people who own it (I assume) come in fairly regularly but for short stays. Last summer they did a good amount of work in the yard and around the house.
The house above has bright red shutters now. Its owner also comes to the hamlet fairly frequently for short stays — except that she spent a whole month here last summer. She's been having a lot of work done on the house, including putting in a new kitchen and a new bathroom.
The vineyards come right up to our property lines. The tall tree in this photo is in our yard, and it's the tallest tree in the area. The smaller tree on the left is an old apple tree that's being taken over by mistletoe. There's Callie running down a row of vines. The ground is absolutely slushy right now — not with ice and snow, but with splashy mud and slippery muck.