Tuesday, November 23, 2010

spending a week in ventenac

there is a growing popularity in low budget tourism and the use of websites like wwoof.org and workaway.info that allow travelers to connect with people all over the world and arrange to come and live in an area and work in exchange for food and lodging.  we used helpx.net and found an opportunity to work at a petite chateau in a tiny village called ventenac en minervois in the south of france resting beside the canal du midi.

we spent 7 days at the house, working a few hours each day with our afternoons free to explore the region.  our hosts, sundara and david, were a couple of scottish expats that had bought the house several years ago and began hosting classical music recitals several times a year in the large salon on the main floor.  they were kind enough to loan us one of the cars during our days off and we were able to visit some of the neighboring villages and beaches.

the mansion is called la fontenille built in 1880
our room was on the second floor of the house overlooking the garden

the house is comprised of three floors including a full apartment with kitchen on the top floor

part of our job during the week involved cleaning and maintenance of the grounds

we ate three meals a day with our hosts

this is murphy

and he is probably the best cat we've ever met
there are vineyards blanketing the countryside all around the village

the canal du midi stretches 240 km, connecting the city of toulouse to the mediterranean port of sete
we helped prepare for one of the soirees held at the chateau.  a classical trio of cello, harp, and oboe were the night's entertainment

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