On Day 2, Patricia very kindly took me on a tour of the Jardin Botanique de Marnay in the morning. For such a small town (Marnay has 247 residents), the garden is surprisingly large - 2 hectares - and contains a wider variety of plants than I would've guessed, as well as a small greenhouse. It really is quite beautiful. She also took me on a tour of the village, which is so tiny that it has no shops at all. A woman drives a van through every day except Wednesday to sell bread - a mobile bakery - but otherwise all shops are to be found in neighboring towns. The local attractions are the Jardin and CAMAC, which is another artist residency. It's an older, much more expensive, fancier (i.e. residents have private bathrooms and are provided food) residency; from both a fiscal as well as a focal matter point of view, I'm pleased with La Maison Verte.
That evening was Paula's residency exhibition, despite it being Wednesday and not the final Friday of the month. (I inquired as to why, and was told the garden's director had another obligation on Friday so it was moved.) Paula is a Professor Emeritus from the University of Mississippi and does a wide range of work in a variety of media, with figurative gestural work being the main focus though other subjects are also explored. The event was nicely populated, and I met many of the other people who make up the main group of friends and neighbors involved in La Maison Verte. Unlike many rural towns, a large portion of the residents here are actually international transplants, which I found really interesting.
On Day 3, I took another trip to the Jardin Botanique and also make a trip down the road to see a stork nest that Paula and Adrian had told me about. Then it started raining, so I broke for lunch and then started some work. I'm using 3P Quick Cure Clay on this residency, so I put a a little down and went to cure it... and I killed my heat gun. Every other electronic I've ever used internationally has worked just fine with a standard adapter, but apparently my heat gun required a voltage converter as well. Since I didn't use one, I fried it. I panicked a bit, as I really need a heat gun ASAP in order to progress artistically with what I'd like to do on this residency and am not even sure where to acquire one around here, but after talking with some of the locals, it appears that one of the other people who helps run the residency, Kinga, has two heat guns herself and will lend me one. And this new one will natively function with the outlets, so I shouldn't have any problems. Fingers crossed!