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Chateaubriand and Shabby

October 19, 2013  •  6 Comments

Although I've been out and about with my camera this week I had an urge to revisit my archives from the summer because I've been pondering detail in stonework- so today's post is one of an occasional  Flashback Feature.  Combourg in Britanny, France is a pretty town full of character. 

It's also the hometown  of Francois- Rene Chateaubriand ( 1768 - 1848 ) who grew up in the castle which looms above. Annoyingly the trees obscure the magnificent building.  So I looked elsewhere for the beauty instead.

I dodged the traffic to capture this statue of this writer, politician, diplomat and historian. My interest in him is that he's considered the founder of Romanticism in French literature. I have a love of French literature. 

I didn't know much about the background of this man but he lead a very interesting life with tales of nobility, the French Revolution,  exile, travels abroad  and well worth a quick google if you have the time. And, yes, he has a steak named after him! Not that I've ever tried it - I don't like steak!

Most towns have statues. On the whole I think we often rush past them as we go about our daily life but they're always worth a closer look.... capture the detail.The statue was carved by Camille Alphonse Terroir.

I like to capture simple shapes against a brilliant blue sky... not that I see skies like this very often! The Breton flag is a striking black and white - it can be seen all over Brittany. At one time this flag was associated with the more extreme separatist movement but no so these days. The people are very proud of their heritage and you can 'feel' it wherever you visit ...  this is what appeals to me about Brittany.

Although the town is most noted for the grand castle I like to take a stroll down the backstreets to capture what to me is the real France. A touch a shabbiness. 

I'm always attracted to window shutters. I loved to pull down the shutters in the flat I lived in whilst I studied at Heidelberg University in Germany - it felt so cosy. Except for really old cottages, shutters do not feature in English homes.... possibly  because we don't experience extremes of weather.

I like to spot old advertising sings and slogans on the walls. .. the older the better.

I like to spot the layers of age - imagine the history within the fabric of the building.

An uncomfortable seat! 

This dog at the hair salon made me chuckle. I wonder if she's had the 'L'Oreal' treatment?!

And the obligatory selife!

I couldn't end without showing you this adorable classic car. Just look at the vintage suitcase stapped on the roof and the neatly arranged sun hats! The French know how to do style! 

I hope you enjoyed my walk around Combourg. 


Have a lovely week. I'm heading for the hills for some relaxation and catch-up time!






Cathy H.(non-registered)
I love seeing these beautiful places through your eyes! Love the details of the statue. I need to be more aware of that. And love, love the old sign!
I love the selfie, you are getting closer to revealing more of yourself :) Love old signs, and the backstreets tell the real story.
I love your images even if you didn't know it was France just by looking at your photographs you can see that it is....Hopefully I will get mine up later
Pamela Grimaud(non-registered)
Lovely - my heart (and history) is in Europe - France and the UK in particular - though I'm born and live in Canada. Thanks for these lovely images of Brittany, including the lovely details of the stark black and white flag, the car and sun hats and the all around wonderful shabbiness and earthiness of the place!
Cindy Swainson(non-registered)
It's always fun to travel along with you to these out-of-the-way spots - full of history and culture. You have a good eye for interesting details!

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