As I chugged up the street toward the end of my morning run one day recently, I noticed the delightful water dancing in the sunlight.
|In spite of the joy it brings me each day when I run past it, this fountain doesn't make the map.|
Number 1 of course is the fountain at "La Rotonde" that's a roundabout at the end of the Cours Mirabeau, a famous street in Aix.
|Earl ventured across the road to the construction barriers to pose with this fountain.|
We moved up the street to number 2, "Fontaine Des 9 Canons" which is the oldest on the Cours Mirabeau, built in 1691 for nearby nuns to use.
|The nun's fountain.|
The third fountain on the street is known as "Mossy" and has always been covered in moss. It brings in water from a hot spring and was built in 1734.
|This fountain is famous for its warm water and its moss.|
artist. I think, although he was never King of France, he made sure that Provence would join France after his death. In the statue he's holding some muscat grapes that are grown in Provence.
|Earl sitting at the king's feet|
|Me examining what might be behind those wrappings.|
|Earl stands manfully at the edge of the fountain. Okay, from this angle it doesn't look much different than the mossy fountain|
|We almost missed this fountain|
|Me perched on the edge of the fountain. Good thing part of the railing had fallen off.|
Earl encouraged me to keep going so we went to Fontaine des 3 Ormeaux. When I searched for the word ormeaux, the translation said "abalone." But that makes no sense.
|Earl and the empty fountain|
Then we had to traverse to the other side of town to find the next fountain, "Fontaine des 4 dauphins." Okay, the name and the fountain for this one made sense to me.
|Dolphins, of course.|
There were two more fountains to find and they were far.
"We don't really have to find those do we?" I asked Earl, who had joined in with the whole treasure hunt idea and wasn't ready to give up. But keep in mind that I had already run five miles that morning.
If I had looked at the explanation on the map, I would have known what we were looking for, but I only looked at the dots on the map and went traipsing toward the bus depot.
One of the main ideas of this fountain hunt was to see new parts of Aix and to rely solely on a paper map. Too often when end up using GPS on our phones so our map-reading skills have suffered.
And it was on this grumpy and hot stage of the journey that we had a few spats about which direction to go.
We cut through an unfamiliar street that had some enormous book covers stacked up like books for the Giant in Jack and the Beanstalk.
|Oversized books -- not for coffee tables|
|The wall of water "fountain"|
|Earl posing with the wall of water in the background.|
|22000 plants growing on a wall|
Look, I was whipped.
Finally, we went for lunch to help rejuvenate me for any further fountain hunting that might come my way.
But I was disappointed that some of my favorite fountains weren't included, especially this one:
|What's not to love about this wild boar spurting water?|