How could one not like a town called “La Charite” ?  La Charite sur Loire more precisely, was the site of our most recent family foray into “la France profonde”.

I love this kind of trip:  a few serious pretenses for being there, but mostly lots of downtime for exploring, reading and stitching. And lots of delicious food.

We were there on a quasi business trip and found people very friendly. Except one really nasty guy at the post office.

La Charite has about 6000 residents, the nearest “large” city being Nevers. The countryside is dotted with quite a variety of chateaux, although this is not the famous part of the Loire Valley.

chateau la doucette

Not too shabby for a family abode. (Hopefully though, recent  french presidential elections won’t have property owners like these moving their money to higher ground).

And we took rides into the charming tiny hamlets around with their little streams and “lavoirs” (washing huts). Everything was so green! Everyone goes crazy for the south of France, but I think I like the green much better.

 


Back at the castle we had a great time too. Two of the four boys (13 year old twins) are budding pastry chefs and we were treated to cannelles, cream puffs, cocktail cakes (savory rather than sweet) and financiers! One of their older brothers is in chocolatier school, what’s not to like about this family?? 

 

 

And one rainy afternoon (of the fifteen rainy afternoons we were there), Delphine, la chatelaine, as she hates to be called, took me to a thrift shop where I got some fantastic embroidered sheets for a song. 

 

There will always be Paris, vive La Charite !