Today’s guest post is by the ever-popular anonymous.
You’ll just have to trust me when I tell you that anonymous has a world of experience traveling around the south of France. He/She has wisely chosen to write about one of the best festivals in the region, the Fete de L’Oranger in Le Bar sur Loup. Enjoy….
Le Stuff has carelessly and foolishly revealed the name of one of the few remaining hill towns, as yet untouched by tourist hands, that hovers still high above the French Riviera.
At first I feared hoards of individuals bearing fanny packs and Flips would, upon receiving this intelligence, launch a destructive invasion leaving tacky detritus in their wake.
However, subscribers to Le Stuff are not drawn from the great unwashed but the intelligentsia, the elite. As such, these sophisticates would never sully the ancient streets of a treasured and historic French village.
So, for Le Stuff’s eyes only, the secret of Le Bar-sur-Loup and the Fete de l’ Oranger…..
Like Brigadoon, Le Bar rises magically out of the early morning mist one special day each year – Paques Lundi, the Monday following Easter. On that day, villagers decorate their quaint streets and squares with festoons of oranges strung like cranberries on a sunlit Christmas tree.
Revelers come from everywhere to celebrate the bountiful orange trees and their delicate white blossoms that perfume the air of this centuries-old paradise. Music, dancing and feasting are featured delights and indulgences of this unique medieval style festival.
Vendors’ stalls shadowed by white umbrellas offer typical Provencal specialties and every delicious and dramatically presented foodstuff one might desire. Would you like a whole roasted pig with requisite apple in mouth or a baguette the length of Long Island?
Perhaps you’ll settle for two perfect lamb chops cooked to your order by a man at a portable grill. His wife will add slices of french bread and salad greens seasoned and swished through one of several excellent locally pressed olive oils.
A cheese course?
Irresistible selections produced within a few kilometers of the village are yours to savor.
Delicate pastries, exotic candies, seductive macaroons and meringues are available in abundance, or get in line at the aged oven next to the Chateau and enjoy a sugar dusted crepe.
Watch colorfully costumed dancers twirl through ancient steps and formations of folk dances once performed by their ancestors. Visit the Cave of the Chateau and see an outstanding exhibit by local artists, the spiritual descendants of Renoir, Matisse and Picasso. Tour narrow cobbled by-ways that tunnel and arch back through time revealing vestiges of the Romans, and before them the cave dwellers, who once dwelt in Le Bar.
Stop at the large antique copper contraption devouring bunches of lavender, and buy a slender corked bottle of the valuable essence it distills.
Perhaps you’ve guessed the secret of Le Bar-sur-Loup.
Should you visit this enchanted village and sip the orange wine of its Fete de l”oranger, you might never leave.