by Brenda W. Clough
A rainy day means museum. The museum at Millau is pretty small, but because the Romans had a famous pottery works here they have more pottery than you would believe possible. The factory shipped all around the Med and seems to have produced at high volume — molds, a standard set of shapes and decoration. The little cups in the photo are mass-produced offering cups, for use in temples. Millau is surrounded by the most startling crags, very dramatic and steep, but otherwise seems to be the most ordinary French city I have been in yet.
It quit raining long enough to explore Severac-le-Chateau a little more. There’s some amazingly well renovated medieval buildings here; people have garages, satellite dishes, gardens — quite a lived-in space. Have a look at that narrow little domicile in the angle of the other buildings. Three new windows of the utmost magnificence, double-glazed, and with iron balconies.
This surely must be a great town for writing novels. The Marquis de Severac not only built the citadel, but he set up a monastery lower down into which he immured female members of the family who annoyed him. And there were two later changes of dynasty, the third set were the people who decided to renovate by adding a huge 17th century wing. They light it up at night, with great golden halogens which make the entire citadel look like ET is descending into Averyon. The novel practically writes itself, doesn’t it? I am tell that the elder Dumas did write about le seigneur de Severac, but there must be more gold in that mine.