Thursday, February 02, 2006

Rock Star!

Clannnnggg! Man, you can just about hear the power chord this grrrl's just hit! Actually, it's Erato, the muse of Music from the front of the Jules Scalles Gallery, the municipal art museum in Nimes, where I spent the better part of last week. This building was right across from my deeply funky hotel, but wouldn't you know? I never had time to walk in the front door.

Starting a magazine is every bit as time-consuming and nerve-shredding as giving birth (although, to be honest, I've never given birth), and Thursday through Sunday, Laurence, Jackie, and I zig-zagged around the Languedoc delivering the newly-printed copies of the Languedoc Sun to the places that agreed to distribute them, most of which were very excited to see the magazine. In the process, I got to see a lot of the countryside in the northeastern part of the area, known, after the river that flows through it, as the Gard, as well as return to Montpellier, mooch around Avignon, and see a number of small villages.

The bad news, though, was that it rained nearly the whole time, and even snowed in Alès and Uzès, which is a rare event. On Sunday, as we headed down to Pézenas to drop some copies off at the tourist bureau there, the rain was particularly severe, with police trying to persuade truckers not to hit the motorway as we left Nimes. Actually, it wasn't too bad, although there were strong winds and there were vineyards completely under water past Montpellier, and rivers overflowing their banks all along the way. Some villages were cut off from the main road by the flooding, and all of the water was weirdly tinted with pink mud. And, in a final irony, I wound up with publisher Laurence Boxall's cold, which has had me down ever since Monday. Lots of fun doing those 12-hour train rides with your head feeling like it's going to explode.

I'm going to attempt a more thorough post about this trip -- although it might not happen, depending on how the work schedule lines up in the next couple of days -- and I'll definitely post some of the 66 pictures I took on Flickr and provide a link.

Meanwhile, ever unable to resist cliches, here's another photo from Nimes, of the Maison Carrée, the remarkably well-preserved temple from 5 AD that was built so people could worship Julias Caesar's kids. It's quite amazing to see it looming up just down the street like this, but it's gorgeous lit up at night, which was mostly when I was able to walk around Nimes, usually in search of food. Which I found.

Anyway, maybe tomorrow; the residual blah feeling from the cold has me still, and I want to do this justice.


dumneazu said...

From an old time lurker, congrats! Sounds like a great project, definately beats returning cans for the deposit money (as an ex-ported Yank freelancer I been damn close to there, and done a lot of things like that....) But most importantly, what did you eat?

Daniel Rubin said...

What are you eating, drinking, what's on the radio? Sorry - missing the life.

Marie Javins said...

It's good to take the train when you have a cold. It might be 12 hours but think how horrible the pressure in your head would have been if you'd flown.

Ed Ward said...

Oh, the eating and drinking will appear soon, no worry about that. And Marie's right, with the addition that, often, if I don't have some ghastly disease before I get on the train, I'll surely have one by the time I get off.