Wednesday, January 27, 2010

May 31, 2009 - Rosans, France

Mooching along the D994 road on the way to our next destination we spied a tiny village on a hill and promptly swerved off the road into a narrow lane to check it out. Turned out that this was Rosans, a village dating back to Roman times, with a current population of just over 500 souls. The area is known as The Baronnies and is thought to have been populated, in large part, by retiring Roman soldiers who were granted small parcels of land - an early form of a pension one supposes. Until quite recently, the area population had been in decline for several centuries due, it seems, to harsh winter weather and a paucity of economic opportunities. Its recent "rediscovery" by holiday home buyers has possibly stopped or even reversed the depopulation trend, as the Mercedes set move in. By and large, Rosans is quite rundown although the stone buildings have survived the lack of maintenance remarkably well. There is an active church in the surprisingly large main square and a bustling cafe in another corner, populated by wine quaffing yuppies. Like other locations in this rustic area of France, Rosans enjoys an average of 300 days of sunshine each year while the altitude of 2500 feet or so, keeps the temperature pleasantly cool in summer. Click here for a quick tour.

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