A lovely sunny day saw us heading east for a day out in the Jura. Beyond Tournus we passed through the Bresse country with its patriotic chickens and half timbered farmhouses. At Louhans we stopped at the market where our neighbours go to get their chickens. There’s the small animal market (with large animals every alternate Monday) in an enclosed area but the rest of the market with clothes and baskets extends far into town along the Grande Rue with its 15th century Spanish arcades.
all sorts of chickens
and this fine fellow
The market was alive with chickens, rabbits and caged birds. Soon people were walking around with cardboard boxes that squawked and scrabbled. I was glad to see the animals were treated well, shaded from the hot sun with bits of cardboard and canopies. Chickens came in all sizes from one day old to ready to eat. Of course you could buy oven ready Bresse chickens complete with their heads and feet.
The famous Bresse chickens
Onwards into the land of Comté cheese and brown and white cows. The vineyards here produce the AOC vin jaune. Perched on a rock above the vineyards is Château-Chalon, one of the most beautiful towns in France.
Château-Chalon with its sheer cliffs
and the view from the town
Further east there is Clairvaux-les-lacs, which, as its name implies, has two beautiful lakes nearby. The beaches were lovely with clean white sand. Chris went for a dip and found the water surprisingly warm.
Swimming in the lake at Clairveau
The main reason for visiting Clairvaux-les-lacs was to go and see the Musée des Maquettes à Nourrir et Courir le Monde. Marcel Yerly (1915-2000) was an agricultural worker who had a passion for making working models of the tractors and combine harvesters he knew from his early days on the farm. The work is very accurate with moving parts. It’s difficult to believe how he made all the models when you see his simple workbench with drill and saw. He was also an skilled painter of landscapes and made his own brushes and paints.
Working model of an early tractor (photo website www.museemaquettebois.fr)
It was a lovely run back through Orgelet, Saint-Amour and Pont-de-Vaux, crossing the Saône to Fleurville. I always consider the other side of the the Saône as foreign lands so I was glad to be back home.