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Autumn crocuses in the meadows...

Monday, October 01, 2012

It took me a while to get ready for my hike yesterday... I had been feeling very much 'under the weather' on Saturday, probably made it worse by receiving a letter that upset me too. I hate how my emotions can ruin my day sometimes!

So I was badly in need of a good workout! I finally got ready and drove to La Ferté-sous-Jouarre, a little town East of Paris on the way to the Champagne area. I had passed by it when I came back from my 'mini vacation' a few weeks ago and thought it would be a nice place to come back to. I was right!

I parked near the Marne river and crossed the Charles de Gaulle bridge.

It was such a gorgeous day! It really would have been silly not to make the most of it! Then I went up the hill to reach the forest... I loved the path leading to it!

I passed by a park which had gates that looked ancient! :)

And then I was in the forest! Can you see the signs painted on the tree? This shows that you are on an official hiking path.

At some point, the path was going down, and there were lots of rolling rocks. Not my favorite kind of path! But it was beautiful.

Then I reached the Dhuys aqueduct, on which I walked for about an hour, first through the woods...

... and then through the fields...

Honestly, if I hadn't seen regularly on the way these little 'houses' which give access to the aqueduct for specialized staff... [EDIT: No, nobody ever lived in those! They are tiny and don't have any windows. They were built especially for maintenance of the aqueduct. I think there must be stairs leading to the aqueduct structure and the river flow... This enables staff to check everything is OK and to do repairs if needed.]

... I would sometimes have forgotten I was on an aqueduct!
Especially when there were autumn crocuses (colchicums/meadow saffrons) to look at! ;-)

"Colchiques dans les prés fleurissent, fleurissent,
Colchiques dans les prés, c'est la fin de l'été."

[Autumn crocuses in the meadows
Are blossoming, blossoming
Autumn crocuses in the meadows
It's the end of summer.]

It is a French children's song. You can find it on YouTube if you want to have an idea of the melody I had in my head for the rest of my hike! :)))

Autumn crocuses are actually often well hidden in the grass. If you aren't careful, you could pass by them without seeing them (I know I did at first!).

Indeed, there were lots of interesting things to look at in the area, like this poplar grove in the distance (I later crossed it)...

... a tractor working in the fields...

... beautiful shadows...

... and friendly cows!

I have heard that it isn't a good year for apples. But it looks like it might be a good year for pears!

Although dry flowers make me a bit sad because they definitely say summer has ended, I cannot help but think that some are truly beautiful.

These were incredible! They grew horizontally!

I got a bit tensed when I entered the poplar grove as I saw a car parked on the side of the path... I was scared it was hunters! But no, it was just friends sharing a picnic, phew!

After walking through the woods for a while...

... I reached a wall and had a look through the gates... Hmmm nothing much to see! :)

I followed it for a while through the woods, then passed by a cemetery...

I crossed Reuil-en-Brie and followed the Marne river...

... all the way back to La Ferté-sous-Jouarre...

... seeing the town hall appear in the distance...

... and looking at pretty houses on the way...

Then I was back at Charles de Gaulle's bridge,

and crossed it in the other direction a little over 4 hours after the beginning of my hike!

How has your weekend been? Where you able to go on a hike/run/bike tour?

I am sorry I have been a bit MIA these last few days, it was chaotic after I came back from England! It should be better this week! Have a sparkling week!!!

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    1064 days ago
    So lovely!!
    2065 days ago
    If you aren't a professional photographer, you should be. Amazing photo's in all your blogs. Great talent!
    2076 days ago
    I always enjoy your blogs. With all your photos it is like a relaxing mini vacation for me. The French countryside is beautiful. Thanks so much for posting!
    2077 days ago
    2077 days ago
    2082 days ago
    Claire, I want come on your hikes with you. You always choose the most wonderful areas to walk.

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    2083 days ago
    What a variety of colors you saw. Don't you love this time of year? The picture with the sun peaking through is real nice. It almost looks like a big snow flake. The little building for the aqueduct reminds me of a troll house. The Cows looked so curious. They are the same everywhere. Looks like another fun hike!
    2083 days ago
    I can't wait to go on our forest hikes soon! That was a very pretty forest...loved the gates! And the crocus! We saw lots of wild flowers on our last hike and the water hyacinths were blooming at my fave pond at the park! That is what we did last weekend. We always get out and enjoy a short walk or more if it is cool enough. Hope you feel better now! Hope all is ok! emoticon emoticon
    2084 days ago
  • JACKIE542
    I almost missed this blog, very happy I didn't. I may need a new computer and new service I have been having so much trouble.
    Beautiful hike. I have crocuses in my garden right now but mine are white. Loved the song.
    I am also happy you were able to enjoy your hike and not run into any of those hunters. I can't wait to see Fall color in France. I am waiting, but still no color here, where I am in California.
    I will be going on an 8 mile hike, when it get cooler, I hope to get some Fall pictures of the mountains up here.
    Take good care, I hope you are doing better, sounds like you are, because you had a great dinner. emoticon emoticon
    2086 days ago
    Oh I love the photo of leaves and berries, #6 from the end, I think. Such lovely colors and such clear focus. And I enjoyed the song very much too. Wish that all the words had been published there, I could understand some of it but not all! Glad you are back and hiking again...I've been so busy...finally catching up a bit.
    Have a wonderful October and I hope there are no more upsetting communications... emoticon
    2087 days ago
  • YIWEN39
    Good for you that you didn't skip your hike :-) Good for you, body and soul, and sunshine is great too, as is good scenery. Thanks again for sharing your discoveries and beautiful pics with us. Here, way too much rain lately to go anywhere...
    Have a great week :-) emoticon emoticon
    2087 days ago
    Gorgeous place for a hike!! I am glad you were able to get out and enjoy it. I am so sorry that you received a letter that upset you.
    I hope this week brings you peace and happiness. Just remember that you are loved.
    2087 days ago
  • RAMONA1954
    Claire, thank you for another incredible journey with you on your hike. I enjoy them thoroughly. Your photographs are so beautiful.
    I was sorry to hear you haven't felt well. I'm hoping you will feel much better soon. Take care of yourself. Have a fabulous week!
    Ramona emoticon
    2088 days ago
  • BAKER1009
    Sorry that you hadn't been feeling very well, but glad you got out for a hike. We had a lot of rain here over the weekend, so most of it was spent indoors, except for some shopping that had to be done.

    Thanks for sharing the pictures from your hike, they are absolutely beautiful!! Love the flowers, oh, and the cows. I grew up where people raised cows, but now living in the city you rarely see them.

    Big Hugs,
    2088 days ago
    How gorgeous! I love reading about your travel and seeing your pictures.
    2088 days ago
    wonderful as always - you give such vicarious pleasure to the rest of us, thank you!
    2088 days ago
  • AGK3112
    Beautiful place and your photography is also wonderful. Loved your pictures..
    2088 days ago
    What gorgeous photos!! Sunday was a beautiful day, and I spent it shut up inside singing... oh well, i had my run in the morning at sunrise. the colchicum are lovely, and now thanks to you, Claire, I have the song in my head. My kids sang it often at school.

    Hope you're feeling better now!

    2088 days ago
    what a beautiful hike! i hope it improved your mood a lot. Sunday was a gorgeous day.
    2088 days ago
  • BEWELL48
    Oh what spectacular pictures! The serenity is pure pleasurable! You are certainly a wonderful photographer! Thank you!
    2088 days ago
    Thank you Claire, absolutely fabulous. It always seems to be very remote in the forests you walk in, I am sure I could not walk it alone I would get lost. Your forests anr light and airy Maine forests are very thick and there are very few paths that the animals have made.90% of this State was covered in Forest when we came here and it still has large areas untouched but logging is always going on and so is treeplanting.
    HUGS Thanks for showing us your lovely corner of our world. Pat in Maine. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    2088 days ago
    C'est fantastique! J'aime le photo avec les ombres; très artistique!
    2088 days ago
    What an absolutely beautiful area! The song is adoreable. The crocuses beautiful!! Thank you for sharing such beauty. HUGS!
    2088 days ago
  • HOLLYM48
    Lovely as usual! So glad you were able to get out and hike and hope you are feeling 100% again soon. Sorry to hear about the letter that upset you but my guess is the hike and the beauty that surrounded you made you feel much better. Thanks for the look into the country side once again! emoticon
    2088 days ago
    A long hike with beautiful scenes and I hope you felt better when you returned home. As always love the beautiful photography.
    2088 days ago
  • LINDAK25
    From your pictures and descriptions it looks like a perfect day. I'm not sure I would be able to hike for four hours! Good for you. The poplars are almost done losing their leaves, ours are, too.

    As always, your pictures are spectacular. You asked about my weekend. I sat outside and read a book. I usually exercise indoors away from allergens (it's ragweed season), sun and humidity. Sunday, however, was a lovely day without high humidity. Here in North Carolina, near Charlotte, September and October days can be hot and humid or really wonderful, sometimes even both!
    2089 days ago
    I feel like I was walking with you, love the pics.... emoticon
    2089 days ago
    Another glorious hike! You certainly have a way with both words and imagery, Claire! You're awesome!!
    2089 days ago
    I love the little song Mom & I listened to it . The partially opened gate at the park with the ivy climbing up is charming to me.I can just imagine walking through them in Victorian times with fog swirling around. Did people live in the little aqueduct houses? I think they are so cute.I never knew they had fall crocuses Mom ask if France has different colors of them. You always bring so many beautiful sights to your blogs. Mom & I enjoy them. Thank You
    2089 days ago
    What a great place to hike, and thanks for sharing your scenery with us. I also took a forest hike on a bike path. Not nearly as long or things to see, but the foliage is beautiful, especially as the foliage are all starting to turn the colors of fall. Hope you're feeling better. Have a great week, Clairienparis!

    2089 days ago
    I love walking through the woods the best, but sometimes you have to come out of the forest or you miss some of the others incredible parts. It probably would have taken me longer, I would have stopped to chat with the cows, had a pear break and collected some of the dried flowers....

    Another wonderful walk and I'm certain we will sleep good tonight!!
    2089 days ago
  • MILLIE5522
    I so enjoyed that! Thank you for sharing your wonderful hikes! emoticon
    2089 days ago
    Claire!! What a beautiful, beautiful post!!! Thank you for taking us along on your wonderful walks. Makes me want to hop on a plane and come join you!!! [Don't I ust WISH!!!]
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    But your pictures are fabulous, and it's awesome you take us with you virtually!! Thank you!!!
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    2089 days ago
    What another great visit I had along your beautiful countryside again today. I think it is wonderful that you share your adventures with us. Those little houses were a mystery to me. I have never seen a cement house shaped like those and with no windows. It makes me think that they would be damp and moldy inside. I wonder what they are used for? emoticon emoticon
    2089 days ago
    I so look forward to your journeys. You are a gifted writer and photographer and am so grateful emoticon that you give us the opportunity to share your talents and adventures. I hope one day to visit France again and would love meeting you.
    2089 days ago
    I listened to the song. It's very beautiful and sounds actually very ancient. I can imagine it coloring your thoughts as you hiked along.

    I'm amazed that you hiked for four hours! Well done!
    2089 days ago
  • KAREN91
    Thanks so much for sharing your pictures with us! You are such a talented writer and photographer I felt like I went on your hike with you! Your blog is always a joy to read! I hope you have a wonderful week. emoticon
    2089 days ago
    Oh so beautiful!
    I also loved the little video from youtube... sweet...
    have a great week sweet friend! emoticon
    2089 days ago
    Claire, once again thank you for sharing your beautiful hike. I loved the photos! they make me feel as though I am there with you. The crocuses were lovely, as were the woods and the ancient aqueduct. You are a truly gifted artist with your photography.

    Hiking helps calm me a lot when I am stressed, it reconnects us with the joy and beauty in nature. Let's keep hiking! emoticon emoticon
    2089 days ago
    Such beautiful flowers! I'm so sorry that you had such a rough day on Saturday. I know sometimes it's so hard to get out and get moving at times like that but once we do it is so worth it!
    I stubbed my toe a few days ago and either badly bruised it or cracked it a little and so haven't been able to go out hiking. But I hope to next weekend as fall is a great time to hike around here when things are greener from late summer rains, and until it freezes some wildflowers and also cooler temps. I'm itching to get out there. Thanks for sharing your beautiful hike to brighten my day!
    2089 days ago
    I learned so much about autumn crocus from this blog! I just love the photos of the fences and gates and the way that you frame your photos with tree branches! You are such a gifted photographer, transporting us with you on your hikes!! This is a beautiful walk....

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    2089 days ago
  • DMF2012
    Once again, such a beautiful blog. Thank you for sharing!

    2089 days ago
    I think this was your prettiest forest blog yet! Loved the crocuses. I'm sorry that a letter upset you so much. I've had sudden bad news or mean spirited-ness upset me for days sometimes, but getting out into nature is a wonderfully therapeutic way to move past it. Our troubles always seem much smaller out in nature don't they? Beautiful pictures! I hope your excitement over Africa outshines any negativity!

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    2089 days ago
    My emotions ruin a lot of days for me! So I can totally relate with you on that. I am trying to be better about it though. Sorry that you received a bum letter.

    Thank you for your blogs. I adore France, even though my adventures living there were confined mostly to cities, so I didn't get to spend much time in the beautiful villages. So your blog brings me back to those memories, and I always smile.

    Hope you have a great day.

    Merci pour votre blog encore!!

    2089 days ago
    emoticon emoticon emoticon LISE

    2089 days ago
    So sorry you had an upsetting letter. As always your blog was THE best! You are so adventuresome, I wish I could go on a hike with you but of course I feel I do everytime you blog. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    2089 days ago
    I realized you must have been back from England by your pictures. What a gorgeous walk! Long, too, no doubt. But great exercise and good mentally and emotionally!!! emoticon
    2089 days ago
    You have such & beautiful eye for capturing things - truly!! Just know that there's a gal in Northern WI that lives vicariously through you & your lens! Thank you, thank you, thank you!
    2089 days ago
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