There is a sun, a light that for want of another word I can only call yellow, pale sulphur yellow, pale golden citron. How lovely yellow is!”
-Vincent van Gogh
He left Paris for the colors of Midi France, Provence, and Arles. The color is gorgeous. The first capture is the early morning light, and the second, from the previous evening. His yellow!
“Normality is a paved road: It’s comfortable to walk, but no flowers grow on it.”
Walking around, following my iPhone map deep in the ancient, hidden, narrow and winding streets, there it was. Look familiar?
Le Café de Nuit/The Night Cafe
When I attended van Gogh Alive! last summer in Denver, I purchased a van Gogh yellow t-shirt with this image. One year later, I am here! Love how the Universe does that.
🌻 🌻 🌻 🌻 🌻 🌻 🌻 🌻 🌻
So happy and thrilled to live it! Couldn’t believe I was standing in his creativity. I sat down at one of the cafe tables and looked at his drink menu…
So I ordered his drink, L’absinthe van Gogh. I really really don’t care for anise-flavored spirits, yet, it’s van Gogh’s drink, like Hemingway! The drink of creatives. :)
It is served with lots of l’eau and some sugar to add as needed. Added almost all the l’eau and it wasn’t enough sugar.
I must not be a creative. So I ordered a [real] Coca-Cola.
Loved so much. Stayed a long while…didn’t want to leave! Yet, it was time to find the Arènes d’Arles, the Arles Amphitheatre. The ancient construction from the year 90 A.D.
Think gladiators and chariot races and 20,000 spectators. I re-watched Russell Crowe’s ‘Gladiator’ (one of my favorite films) before I travelled to Arles.
Touching 2,000 year old stone. Incredible. Took lots of pictures. Of rocks. :) Ancient stone, and vibrations, and energy. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, along with other Roman and medieval buildings in Arles, the Roman and Romanesque Monuments. Extraordinary. Roman ruins without traveling to Rome, only a 200 mile bus/train ride from Limoux.
The arena was inspired by the Colosseum in Rome, built in 72-80. The Arles arena hosted gladiators during four centuries.
Spending time there my mind kept traveling to those times, the violence and gore, the cruelty, the enslaved people…for sport…the animals that were brought up from below, like was depicted in the film. I could post about 50 photos. Here’s a few incredible captures.
A remarkable experience. I was there a long time, and at one point I was the only human in the arena. Truly profound. Apparently, bullfights continue there today.
So happy I traveled to see it, to experience it, van Gogh’s light (!), to walk the ancient Roman streets.
I stayed overnight in a small, quaint hotel, once an old museum called the Hôtel du Musée from the 1600’s. About a 12 minute walk from la gare, the train station. It’s right across from the Musée Réattu. Quite basic, small single rooms. Very clean. The best attraction is the proximity to many beloved attractions, like the Constantine Baths, The van Gogh Foundation, and the ancient arena. It’s just steps away from the the river Rhône. Left my large window very open as I slept because of the heat, and when I awoke, about 45 new mosquito bites. Pas bon. Even two on my face. That’s a first. Drag. Worth it!
In the morning, they serve a lovely little breakfast on their garden patio.
Then it was time to head back to the train station and make my connections for the return to Languedoc and Limoux.
Wonderful random art spotted next to the Arles train tracks. From the photo, it looks painted, but it’s actually thin wire tubing.
Van Gogh. Or as they say in France, van G O L F .
mercimercimerci, for your your passion, your dreams, and your yellow.