By Veronica

Fabric riches

Off to Bordes de Graus yesterday, to spend a few days with G and A. A seven-hour drive on a hot day; by the time we got to Llavorsi and stopped to pick up groceries, we had to buy a bag of frozen peas to wrap round my ankle. Dinner in the restaurant and bed.

Today everyone else went out for walks in the morning. Proper walks; meanwhile I walked 400 metres along the road and back. It took me half an hour, and the ice pack had to come out again when I got back. So in the afternoon S and I went for a drive along the Vall de Cardos (Cardos = thistles). We stopped in Ginestarre, a hamlet high up a mountain where A had told us there was a weaver. Her workshop was open but no-one around; eventually a passing guy called her in from the garden where she was collecting eggs.

Rosa Maria was happy to have a good long chat. The hamlet has precisely three residents: herself, her husband, and their son. They've been there for 35 years; the attraction for them was that the last resident had just died, so they were alone. There wasn't even a road then, just a dirt track. "We love it," she said happily. "People think it's hard in winter but we're on a south-facing slope. Even when there is snow, it melts quickly. I tell them August is the worst month -- too many people about!"

Her workshop is lovely, as is her work, heaped in colour-coordinated piles, most of it in silk or cotton. I bought a blue speckled scarf, and then she got out the church key and took us to see the murals in the tiny Romanesque church.  The originals are in Barcelona, La Seu d'Urgell, and ... New York, but there are faithful reproductions. I'd post some extras but I'm hanging off S's 3G connection on his phone as the flaky wifi has flaked out altogether. So I will add them later.

See also Sunday's backblip.

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