The Calissons d’Aix, made from a medieval recipe, are a traditional French candy consisting of a smooth, pale yellow, homogeneous paste of candied fruit (especially melons and oranges) and ground almonds topped with a thin layer of royal icing. Calissons have a texture not unlike that of marzipan, but with a fruitier, distinctly melon-like flavor. Calissons are often almond-shaped and are typically about two inches in length. Calissons are traditionally associated with the town of Aix-en-Provence, France; consequently, most of the world supply of calissons are still made in the Provence region.
Pleasantly surprised to be in the midst of their month-long theater Festival while traveling in Avignon in July. There were so many street performers advertizing for their show or play it feel like the whole downtown was a giant outdoor theater. The posters were everywhere on the streets.
Before I visited Provence this summer, I always thought sunflowers actually track the sun. When I was driving in Provence, most of times in the afternoon when the sun was on the west, I found that all the sunflowers were actually facing the opposite direction of the sun. I thought there was something wrong with the sunflowers in Provence….until I consult Wikipedia:
A common misconception is that sunflower heads track the Sun across the sky. This old and chronic misconception was debunked already in 1597 by the English botanist John Gerard, who grew sunflowers in his famous herbal garden: “[some] have reported it to turne with the Sunne, the which I could never observe, although I have endevored to finde out the truth of it.” The uniform alignment of sunflower heads in a field might give some people the false impression that they are tracking the sun, but the heads are actually pointing in a fixed direction (East) all day long. However, the uniform alignment does result from heliotropism in an earlier development stage, the bud stage, before the appearance of flower heads. The buds are heliotropic until the end of the bud stage, and finally face East. Their heliotropic motion is a circadian rhythm, synchronised by the sun, which continues if the sun disappears on cloudy days. If a sunflower plant in the bud stage is rotated 180°, the bud will be turning away from the sun for a few days, as resynchronisation by the sun takes time. The heliotropic motion of the bud is performed by the pulvinus, a flexible segment just below the bud, due to reversible changes in turgor pressure (no growth).”