I apologise for not having been around for a while. I have just come back from a holiday in France and Spain.
An excellent holiday. On the way down we stayed in Parthenay in France with a friend. Parthenay is a very nice town and the friend has a house in the medieval quarter. The houses there are all timbered and very attractive. It is even better now because the council has stopped parking on the street and so it is safer to walk and looks much more attractive without modern cars cluttering up the medieval streets.
The town is built on a hill and many of the houses have caves for wine storage cut into the hill at the back. I suppose in the meieval times, they could also be used to store perishable foods too.
Many of the houses have interconnecting doors. The area was a protestant one in the past, and during the times of conflict between the Catholics and Protestants, the doors were used for people to run through the houses to escape the catholic soldiers who came to persecute them. There are also little windows about 20cm wide and 30cm deep in the walls that people could peep through to see the soldiers coming without being seen themselves, and thus run through the houses to escape.
From Parthenay we went to Salamanca. I will describe that city in a further blog.
I am going to add another extract from the Wolf Pack later this week, so if you have been following it, look out for that.