The Cafe de l’Union was definitely open for lunch, but we didn’t really find the thought of sitting in the sun on plastic chairs, mere inches from trucks and tractors whistling past to be a terribly appealing prospect, and the weather was not yet warm enough for it to tempt us into the dankness within, so we gave it, as they say, a big swerve and hoped that it will live on despite our lack of patronage. Earning a living in small villages such as these cannot be easy, and many of the businesses which survive appear to be opened each day out of habit, their elderly proprietors unable or unwilling to retire, till death do they part.
The Chateau Châtillon meanwhile, which has no doubt been delighted to have us in its back yard for a couple of days is a world heritage listed property and is said to be open for inspection. It would we are sure, also have been delighted to welcome us within its walls as well, but it wasn’t open today, nor will it be open tomorrow, and there is a good deal of renovating going on involving scaffolding and builders working on the roof which means in reality that it won’t be open for some time to come either.
“If we were to return in July perhaps it would be possible”, but deep down we know that if we return some time in July, it will be closed on that day due to any number of unforeseen circumstances.
So we cycled down the tow path for a bit, ate our ham and fresh baguette in contemplative silence, taking consolation in the thought that at least the baker and the butcher will not go broke on our account.