I thought the trees dotting the countryside over in the département de l'Allier (northern Auvergne) were amazing. Moulins, the Allier's main city, is only about a two hour drive from Saint-Aignan, but the landscape changes radically at least three times along the way.
Yesterday on the drive home I took some photos. Walt was driving. When you are a passenger you get a much better view of the scenery than when you're the driver. I probably have a lot of other photos of impressive trees in the northern Auvergne province, but I haven't yet had time to go through all the images I captured.
I assume these are oak trees. There's a big forest in the northern part of the Allier where oaks are grown and harvested to produce barrel staves for the French wine industry. We drove through the forest, but mostly we spent time on rolling hills and plains.
It's very nice to be back home. Tasha and Bertie were really happy to see each other again. When we drove in, Bertie the black cat was waiting for us in the garage window as if he somehow knew we would be arriving at that moment.
And I was happy to be back at home. As Walt says, our house is the nicest gîte rural we've ever stayed in. One of the greatest side benefits of going off for stays in vacation rentals is that you come back appreciating the comforts of home all the more.