Archive for June 4th, 2020

June 4, 2020

Church of St. Pierre et St. Paul ,Erdeven!

Another beach town in my lovely Morbihan breton , this is as well a town already has a post in my blog but feel missing something extra.  And I thought of the Church of St Peter and St Paul or église St Pierre et St Paul. Therefore here is a bit more on Erdeven!

Erdeven is located in the department 56 of the Morbihan, in the region of Bretagne. Located by the sea, Erdeven is a seaside resort with beautiful beaches such as Kerminihy, naturist beach since the 1970s ; Kerouriec, family beach by Roche-Sèche; and Kerhillio, the best known and favorite of us, for its flat bottom and waves that allow everyone to be in the water. The latter continues towards Sainte-Barbe beach (town of Plouharnel see posts). This beach extends to Fort Penthièvre on the Quiberon peninsula (see posts). These beaches are part of the largest dune cordon in Brittany which extends from the Pointe de Gâvres to the Fort de Penthièvre in the town of Saint-Pierre-Quiberon (see posts).

The name of Erdeven comes from the Breton An Ardeven and it means “the country on the dune”. There are several things to see here some already mentioned in previous posts such as the megaliths alignements de Kerzérho (menhirs); Mané-Braz Dolmens, and Mane-Croch. As well as the Run-er-Sinzen mound. The Narbon windmill, built in 1805 and restored after the storm of 1987. The Chapel of the Seven Saints, whose origin is unknown, but in ruins in the 19C, it was restored in 1899. The castle and park of Keravéon, which became a 4-star hotel (see post). The castle of Kercadio also private from the Middle Ages

The Chapelle de la Vraie Croix (or True Cross) in Breton Langroës. It is also called the chapel of the True Cross, Notre-Dame de Pitié or chapel of the Congregation. The south door is built in basket handle. It is adorned with a cabbage brace topped with a floret. Two pilasters decorated with circles and diamonds surround it. Above: a shield and a phylactery carried by two angels. We passed by it briefly.

Erdeven

However ,the main thing of the post is show a bit more about a wonderful monument the Church of St Peter and St Paul or église de St Pierre et St Paul.

Erdeven

The Church of St. Pierre et St. Paul ;which recognized the Lords of Keravéon for the founders of the town, was entirely rebuilt in the 18C. We owe this church to the Talhouët family, Lords of Keravéon. The date of 1755 appears on its curious bell tower entirely built in granite. Its shape is square at the base and then octagonal and ends in a pyramid dome capped with a skylight under a cross also in granite. The Latin cross Church of St Peter and St Paul has been modified several times, notably in 1833 where it was enlarged by two collateral. On the other hand, in the 1960’s, the expansion of the road D 781 necessitated to trim the apse and rebuild the sacristy.

Erdeven

Erdeven

The three altar altarpieces were destroyed. Inside the ceiling is panelled. The Choir now shows the statues of St. Peter and St. Paul on either side of a large wooden cross. The pulpit in carved wood is remarkable. There are various statues and an element of the old altar altarpiece, a Madonna and Child, facing the pulpit. The group of Seven Saints, in plaster, dates from the 20C and comes from the Chapel of the Seven Saints, restored in the 19C. The set of 12 stained glass was entirely made in 1896. These stained glass windows are mentioned by the generous donors, the families of the village and the clergy, who have financed them. Most of them are portraits of Saints such as St. Michael, St. Joseph, St. Peter, St. John the Baptist, Sacred Heart of Jesus, Blessed Virgin Mary,St. Anne, St. Louis, Ste. Germaine , and St. Francis de Sales. The two stained glass windows of the Choir show the martyrdom of St. Peter and Saint Helena discovering the true Cross.

Erdeven

Erdeven

Again the church is not mention in the tourist sites tant pis, unfortunately but it is worth the detour for its architecture and history at the least.  Here are some webpages to help you plan your trip to Erdeven just south of me.

The town of Erdeven on tourism practical information! City of Erdeven on tourism information

The tourist office of the area Bay of Quiberon on ErdevenTourist office Bay of Quiberon on Erdeven

And there you go another nice tour on a lovely town which combine with the church and the beaches you have for a wonderful weekend in Erdeven, indeed. Hope you enjoy the tour.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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June 4, 2020

Church of Saint Patern,Séné!!!

So on a sunny day let me bring back a town close and dear with a monument seldom mentioned if briefly in my previous posts. I like to tell you a bit on Séné, and then the Church of Saint Patern of Séné.

Séné is located in the department 56 of the Morbihan, in the region of Bretagne. It is at the bottom of the Gulf of Morbihan, bounded to the west by the city of Vannes and to the east by the town of Theix-Noyalo  from which it is physically separated by the Noyalo river. There is very nice roads here and for public transport (not taken) you have the Bus served by line 7 of Kiceo network of Vannes as well as 3, 5 and 10 (Poulfanc) passes by as well. On arrival at Vannes train station (from Paris Montparnasse for example), take bus line 7 “Saint-Avé – Le Dôme / Séné Ajoncs” in the direction of Séné-Ajoncs.

I have written on some of the things to see here so will just recap now ; the dolmen of Gornevése (megalith stone), smaller castles and Crosses, and the national nature reserve of the marshes of Séné: the reserve protects 530 hectares of a diversified natural area: mud flats, meadows, salt flats, and especially the largest marshes in the region. Also the lovely Port-Anna ,it is the last fishing port of the Gulf of Morbihan . The beaches of Moustérian, Pointe du Bill, Montsarrac and Barrarac’h , and two picturesque peninsulas ,the Séné peninsula and the Villeneuve peninsula.

The city of  Séné on its remarkable sites not the Church unfortunately here. City of Sene on best things to see they think

The city of Séné with several tourist brochures you can print here: City of Séné on tourist practical info

The tourist office of the Gulf of Morbihan on things to do and see at Séné in French: Tourist office Gulf of Morbihan on Séné

What I like to write on this post is on a nice monument seldom mentioned but worth the detour me think for its architecture and history I like. Info translated taken from Church brochures and books on it. I like to say, there is same name church in Vannes  (see post) of which this is the diocese as St Patern is one of the founding  bishoprics of Brittany and first bishop of Vannes.

The current Church of Saint Patern was built between  1878 and 1886.  The belltower is a bit truncated at 50 meters and a lot of granite stone in construction of Gothic and Roman traces . The Church of Saint-Patern is located in the heart of the town of Séné. It is in the form of a Latin cross, measuring 45 meters in length for a width of 30 meters at transept. Preceded by the bell tower, the nave develops into three bays. On the wings of the transept are grafted two apsidioles or small chapels on the south side and the heart, flanked by two sacristies, ends with a polygonal bedside.  The Church of Saint-Patern presents under its domes adorned with stained glass windows, one of which restores the episode of the miraculous fishing, two models. The first is a very nice three-mast boats from the beginning of the 19C under great bulwark, the Guardian Angel boat.  The second ex-voto is a Sinagot, a boat typical of the Gulf of Morbihan, offering a black hull with a red-winged tapered line, registered in Vannes, the Saint-Louis.  This boat of Séné, of type Querrien, is the latest evolution dating from the 1920’s. There are very few votive models of this kind, if not two others, older, preserved in Sainte-Anne d’Auray. A stained glass window under a dome of the Church  of Saint Patern restores the scene of the miraculous fishing  with Jesus and his disciples.

Sene

Sene

Sene

And there you go another nice monument in my wonderfully beautiful Morbihan breton and very near me and go often to Séné. Enjoy the tour!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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June 4, 2020

Going to Punta Brava!!!

And here I am again in nostalgia lane going back to my roots. Indeed I have been lucky enough to travel the world, 81 countries last count. However, it all goes back to one.. Ah well where is Punta Brava, well there is quite a few towns in various countries with the same name even back in my grandparents land of Tenerife, Spain. However, we were later and my Punta Brava sits in Havana, Cuba. 

Let me tell you a bit on my Punta Brava town of about 2K folks where I was born and left 49 + years ago.

Punta Brava is a town part of the agglomeration of La Lisa nowdays under the new administrative arrangement after the Cuban revolution. Before , it was alone just inside the city limits of Havana. It is about 21 km (about 13 mi) of city center/downtown Havana. Nearby settlements include Machurucutu to the north, La Lisa city to the east, Bauta to the southwest, and the University of Information Sciences to the southeast.

Punta Brava

There is lots of confusion as to its origins as my family claims it was around 1870 when the point coming from the Tabacco plantations and its wealth in Vuelta Abajo Pinar del Rio province passed by here on its way to the port of Havana and onwards to Spain. However, around this point bandits always ransacked the convoy so it became a punta brava or hot point. The other is that the origin of the town baptized as San Vicente de Punta Brava, located on the banks of the Camino Real de Vuelta Abajo (royal road of vuelta abajo or downward road) ,but with no mention of the bandits. In Punta Brava, at the time of its appearance as a town, there was a tile manufacture factory who made bricks. Its producs were famous for its quality, and were considered then, as the best brick tile in Cuba. In this town there were also large pineapple packers ((and as boy it was gone and we played baseball!), destemming, packing and tobacco picking workshops, cart and car workshop, and Maidenform women undergarment (my mother worked) as well as other establishments that show the economic development reached by Punta Brava at the end of the 19C.

A major event that was celebrated nationally until the revolution stopped it took place on December 7, marking the death in combat of Cuba’s greatest general. This was on the San Pedro farm, loma or hill of Cacahual, near Punta Brava, on December 7,1896, General Antonio Maceo y Grajales fell in combat. It has been the scene of different military encounters during Cuba’s fight for independence, and is most notable as the site where Maceo died at the hands of Spanish troops. For the anecdote the revolutionary dictator Castro’s father, Ángel Castro Argiz,was happy of this event as his company was the one involved in the killing of the General Maceo on this day. Angel was born in Lugo, Galicia, Spain. Fidel’s father.

 Nowdays, Punta Brava is currently like an empty, abandoned, lonely space. The splendor of yesteryear has disappeared in 61 years of socialist revolution. Of the old traditions and rituals, little or nothing remains. Without a doubt, its inhabitants are trapped in the middle of nowhere. As if they were lost in time.

Punta Brava

outside Ford 1954 inside ??

During the missile crisis,1962, the Soviets reportedly built a missile site in Guayabal near Punta Brava. By Punta Brava, passed the old Central Highway, which connects with all of Cuba, going to Arroyo Arenas, Lisa, Marianao and Havana and beyond to Pinar del Rio, and the other way going by Bauta and into the Matanzas and the rest of Cuba. It was connected by rail with its own station from at least 1909. There are several airports in relatively close proximity to Punta Brava including Playa Baracoa Airport which has been mostly used by the military and some permitted passenger service. The Havana Jose Marti international airport is at Rancho Boyeros not far at 15 km (about 9 mi).

With my mom and aunt (her sister) we used to go a lot to El Salado beach not far from Baracoa beach and airport. This was a sandy beach and some huts nice family getaway , now they have more stones… but some tourist services there.

Punta Brava

Another favorite beach of my family were Guanabo ,Santa Maria del Mar ,and of course Varadero. Do not have pictures of the first two but did visit Varadero again in 1998.

Varadero

my native town Church is the Iglesia Nuestra Senora de la Caridad ( Church of Our Lady of Charity,) which is also Cuba’s Patron Saint  located at Ave. 249  betwen  42 and 44 streets, I grew up at Ave 247 in Punta Brava. Again not much on it just for the memories. When Pope John Paul II visited Cuba shortly after the Virgin of  Charity (Virgen de la Caridad del Cobre) or the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary , patron Saint of Cuba was brought all over and passed by Punta Brava! My family sent me the photo.

Punta Brava

While in my last visit in 2012, , I asked my assigned driver to take me to my native town of Punta Brava, visiting family aunt and cousins (which by now left Cuba too) , I ate at a typical Cuban casa paladar in pesos nacionales (for the locals as tourist have the apartheid convertible pesos), a dish of roast pork,moros black beans,yucca, tostones in garlic sauce (green plantains) , salad of tomatos and lettuce, plus coffee and four beers for two persons at about 260 Cuban Pesos Nacionales. The place was just in Calzada (main street Avenida 51, aka Central Highway) before turning left to Guatao,if coming from Havana. It was nice as was there with my remaining family at the time.

If you want to see my pictures as a boy in Havana/Punta Brava I have a post in my blog with these old photos; here: Paris1972-Versailles2003 blog on Punta Brava Havana child days post

As said , the time passes by and all we have is blurred memories of always. A time, a place, a dot in my world map, that is in another world. Hope you enjoy this personal post on my always Punta Brava, Havana, Cuba!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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