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A summer day at the Sabranenque

A calm early morning start

The sun has already risen, it is 7:15 and the early risers take stone walkways to the kitchen. There, the breakfast prepared by a staff member awaits them. It is a breakfast in the French style with coffee, milk, cocoa, bread, butter, jams, and fruit set on a big table on the terrace.  Each one takes a seat, more or less talkative, more or less awake, but the song of the birds accompanies everyone.  Fortunately for the late risers or those who had a late night, breakfast is served until 8:15.

A morning of activity and sharing

At 8:30 the sound of pails, of shovels and other tools and the chatting of wide awake participants announce the departure for a morning of work which keeps everyone busy until noon.  During this time the kitchen team undertakes the preparation of a lunch to delight fellow participants with typical Sabranenque dishes.  At the outdoor worksite lead by Ginou and Walter, participants find their place, discover the pleasures of cooperative manual work, and see the results of their efforts to beautify the place.

A well earned meal

Lunch comes at just the right moment with regional dishes made from fresh produce, mostly local and organic, served on an airy shaded terrace.  Now is a great time to continue morning chats and to get to know folks around the table.  We are new acquaintances but we know each other because we are part of a team which has just shared work together to promote beauty in a special place.  Meals are always a strong moment which tie together our activities and experiences.

A peaceful afternoon of discovery

Afternoons are free for participants to take time to stroll in the sunshine, to relax in the shade of the nooks and crannies of the old village, to explore the local rocky scrub forests filled with the perfume of thyme and aromatic plants, or to discover the region either by automobile or by the regular regional bus service.  The village is located between Avignon, Nimes, Arles, and Uzès.

An evening of conversation

At 7:30 everyone gets together for a delicious, satisfying dinner after an active day.  Things are relaxed, and we talk about our day, plans and life.  As dinner continues we discover different cheeses (there are 365 different varieties of cheese in France) enjoyed with local wine. Our region of the Côtes du Rhône produces high quality wines (to be consumed in moderation).  We linger on the terrace where the late setting sun sheds golden rays on ancient stones. After the meal, les participants organize their evening as they wish.