Picture yourself sitting on a cafe terrace having a grand cafe au lait in the town’s square surrounded by buildings going back to 1200 with a church even older than that. Narrow cobblestone streets. Shops, bakeries abound. Women shopping, the men chatting, smoking and cursing, laughing as well. You would be in the centre of St Leonard de Noblat, a medieval town restored in all its medieval glory and patina. Only problem for a hiker like me is that the town centre is at the crest of a hill. Closer to god than thee – so the saying goes. And that is why I had to climb a 2.5 kilometer hill to arrive at this scene. If only I had me a donkee.
But before all that I have to play this son:
Did you know that this song was not written by Cat Stevens but by a religious brother sometime in the 1800s.
The house is similar in design to Canada House, Juno Beach, Normandy.
There is a town to the northwest of here called Tours. Tours is also the beginning of a camino. But Tours is also famous for a world changing battle during the medieval times. You see, the Muslims had just conquered Spain and now had their eye on France. So a large Muslim army marched into France to kick some French butt. The French were forewarned and this French dude whose name was – I kid you not – Charles “ The Hammer” Martel gathered all of the French peasants, trained them and set off to meet the Muslim invaders. On October 10, 752, the armies met at Tours. Charles was a medieval military genius who held the high ground at Tours. And like an arch angel he came down on the Moors from on high and kicked serious Moorish butt and won the day. The Moors fled back to Spain never to return that is until the 21st Century. But what a name: Charles “ The Hammer” Martel. Like something out of Wrestling, don,t you think. True story. I researched this so you don,t have to.
Milestone: today, while walking, as I looked down, I could see my belt buckle for the first time in 17 years. Wow!
15 km today of which 12 were uphill,including the 2.5 km hill coming into St Leonard de Noblat. Tomorrow Limoges, a place of which I had some serious concerns about before I left Canada. Seems like yesterday but also a long time ago.
5th day on my own. I sure do miss the Von Trappe family and Berry the Dutchman. We had some good laughs with da banker and his famille. Good luck kids. Like good ole Charles the Hammer, kick some serious studies butts.
Thanks to Mike and Jean I had 150 views yesterday on this blog.
Cheers and have a great medieval day.