Posts tagged ‘Renoir’

Summer in Essoyes

Essoyes on a summer evening. Photo by Phineas Rueckert.

I don’t really think of Essoyes as a tourist town, but it is, among other things, a wonderful place for tourists to visit. This is partly the legacy of Alain Cintrat, who has just ended 20 years of public service as our mayor, and partly the legacy of his mother. Of course there were many other people involved in making their dream of memorializing the history of the Renoir family in Essoyes come true; but if not for their dedication and determination over a period of many years, it would probably not have happened.

In any case, it did happen, and as a result Essoyes has become a lovely and very interesting place for tourists to visit, along with the many other lovely villages in this part of southern Champagne, very near the Burgundian border.

So it was that, just before the quatorze juillet, I noticed that the village square was suddenly full of cars, the physically distanced lines outside the bakery and in our little grocery store were longer, and there were lots of tourists strolling through the town. (You can tell which ones are the tourists: they are the ones wearing sporty casual vacation wear, walking at a very leisurely pace through the streets of the town, rather than on the sidewalks. This is irritating only when you are trying to drive a car through those narrow streets, but it is irritation tempered by the knowledge that having tourists come here is a good thing for Essoyes. It is…)

The rate of COVID cases has begun to tick up in France again, and France is responding. Everywhere you go there are signs reminding people what they can, and in some cases must, do to help protect themselves and others, and slow the rate of infection. In Essoyes, starting in August there will be testing available once a week in the community center. And everyone is hoping that, if everyone continues (or begins!) to follow the recommended guidelines for containing the virus, we can avoid a second wave that would be worse than the first. I suspect health care workers are hoping that more than anyone, let’s try to help them out with that, everyone, shall we?

And so, life has returned more or less to normal–well, to the “new normal”–at least for now. For our family that means raspberry tartes for July birthdays–and we celebrated two of them in our home this month.

Happy Birthday, Phineas!

The tartes at lunch were followed by a delicious meal at La Guingette des Arts, on the banks of the Ource River, which flows through the center of Essoyes. (The photo at the top of this post, by the way, taken by “the birthday boy” that night, is not retouched. Believe it or not!) And here’s a photo of him enjoying his escargots at La Guingette.

There will be an organ concert in the church in Essoyes this weekend. How exciting is that? (After nothing happening in the churches for such a long time? Very!)

Wishing everyone a safe, happy continuation. Stay well. Stay safe. Prenez soin de vous.


Janet Hulstrand
 is a writer, editor, writing coach, and teacher of writing and of literature who divides her time between the U.S. and France. She is the author of Demystifying the French: How to Love Them, and Make Them Love You, and is currently working on her next book, a literary memoir entitled “
A Long Way from Iowa.”

July 29, 2020 at 6:01 pm 2 comments

Summer in Essoyes: Vernissage a la Maison Renoir

An exhibition entitled “Evocation de l’exposition Renoir de 1934 par Paul Rosenberg” is on display at the Maison Renoir in Essoyes through October 30…

Continue Reading June 26, 2019 at 1:53 pm Leave a comment

Springtime in Essoyes (2019)

With the opening of the Renoir home to the public two years ago, the village has been able, for the first time, to offer visitors to Essoyes the pleasure of seeing original works of art.

Continue Reading April 18, 2019 at 11:21 am Leave a comment

Back Home in Essoyes…

Well, after six weeks away–nearly a week in Paris in February, followed by five weeks in Washington–I am back home in Essoyes….

Continue Reading March 26, 2019 at 1:21 pm Leave a comment

Spring AT LAST!!!!

…I think I can (cautiously) announce that spring is finally here. At least in Essoyes,  and all over France…

Continue Reading April 25, 2018 at 11:24 am Leave a comment

November in Essoyes (2017 Version)

The month began, of course, with Toussaint,…Then there was Armistice Day…

Continue Reading November 30, 2017 at 1:38 pm 2 comments

Interview with Bernard Pharisien, Local Historian (in English and in French)

An interview with the man who probably knows more about the history of Essoyes, and the Renoir family in Essoyes, than anyone else…

Continue Reading August 18, 2017 at 3:30 pm Leave a comment

Essoyes à la Belle Epoque…a magnificent success!

“As part of the department-wide Year of Renoir, the village of Essoyes hosted a weekend-long return to the year 1900—to celebrate and showcase what Essoyes was like in the height of the period when Renoir and his family would come to the village, to paysanner (enjoy the countryside)…”

Continue Reading July 24, 2017 at 7:20 pm Leave a comment

Et voila! La Maison #Renoir is open to the public!

…yesterday, the Renoir family home, which has been under an intense process of renovation for the past year, was at last ready for visitors–and right on schedule!…

Continue Reading June 3, 2017 at 2:02 pm Leave a comment

A very special spring in Essoyes

“Springtime is always a busy time in agricultural communities, and this year is no different in southern Champagne, as local farmers tend to their crops–primarily wheat, rapeseed, and of course grapes for champagne…”

Continue Reading May 24, 2017 at 4:05 pm Leave a comment

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