#243. In Provence, Postman Patrick Has a Sense of Humour

By pascaljappy | Travel Photography

Jun 16

Having returned from a long hike in the Gorges du Verdon in Northern Provence, I am working on several upcoming posts on the lovely villages of the area (not shortage of those) and the scenic hikes you can walk (your legs are the limiting factor).

But, before this, how about a little fun from the local mailboxes ?

A dangling wooden mailbox on a very beautiful stone wall with flowers in Provence

Dangling mailbox – Provence

Let’s begin with this postcard-worthy house ? Lovely stone walls, beautiful flower pots, great window and shutter and the obligatory mature climber for shadow.

And a wonky letter box.

This is funny for uber-administrative France because we are all supposed to own the same format letter box, with the same size opening and a lock that Postman Patrick can operate with his standard keys.

Standardising makes a lot of sense, but it sure looks better this way.

A letter box in Provence painted in violet with a witch flying on her  broom over a city at night.

No name ? Which is witch ?

Also strictly forbidden and quite entertaining for passers-by, nameless painted mailboxes. Can you imagine the summer guy being told “Mr Smith is the witchcraft box, Mr Jones is the pretty butterflies ..” ? 😉

And how about a slightly grumpy clown for Mr Lasserre ?

A faded red nose and plastic eyes make this old letter box look like a clown's face against a stone wall in a Provence village

Faded and grumpy ?

But this one has to be the funniest. Although set in a less picturesque place, this was turning heads and starting giggles every few seconds, when I captured it.

It was painted to resemble the speed cameras that have been popping up throughout France in recent years and have been driving people nuts (pun intended).

In recent days, the French government (one of the most unpopular in living memory) has been proposing to lower the national speed limit by 10 km/h, provoking the leaps of joy you can well imagine. So this particular mail box has been receiving a lot of attention.

A letter box in Provence is painted to look like a motorway speed camera

Politically incorrect fun

Possibly more ironic than amusing, this final image of a “Private” sign pointing to an open – but official – letter box, also reveal another interesting aspect of some villages in the Verdon: strong support for the Tibetan cause. We found prayer flags in restaurants, in the streets and even in the hills along remote hiking trails.

A letter bow with its door broken and a tibetan prayer flag against the stone wall of a charming Provence town.

A different take on authority ?

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