We travelled up to Paris this morning to pick up my Mother and Marta from the Eurostar. As we the retraced our steps, we tried to explain what Maisse was like. That’s harder than it sounds because it’s just not a tourist destination – there’s no tourist offices, no web pages, Rick Steves doesn’t recommend it.
Maisse sits about 60km South of the centre of Paris. I think it’s functionally, if not technically, an outer-Paris suburb, but it’s like a little village of its own. In many ways I think the village is now the outer border of Paris. When you look North up the railway line you can see modern suburbs – a combination of semi-industrial wasteland and housing estates. But look South and the outlook changes.
Looking South-west from the train station you see a small French village with grey-stone houses. There’s not much to the village to be honest. A supermarket, a couple of boulangeries, a butcher and a bank. A brasserie and a pizza shop. That’s it for retail. There’s a pretty church and the river of course.
Go a bit further and you leave the city completely behind. Yesterday we went for a walk in the afternoon. We walked through the village and soon popped out the other end. Within ten minutes walk we were standing in a wheat field watching a combine-harvester through the heat-haze.
And why are we here? Use a search engine to find a large house, not too far from Paris and in walking distance to a train station and a boulangerie and what you get is… Maisse.