I was honoured to be invited on 12 april 2014 by Serge and Martine Poncet for an informal meeting of ‘bordermen’ or – mockingly in French – ‘bornés’ (freely translated as: stubborn on bordermarkers) who share a passion for the Pyrenean bordermarkers. Even a news-reporter was invited who wrote this article for the L’Indépendant-newspaper:
I felt happy to meet (again) Serge and Martine Poncet, Charles & Josette Darrieu, Alain Laridon, Cayetano and Jean & Carmen Iglesias while enjoying a delicious catalan-style meal. In the après-diner, I was lucky to sit in between the laptops of Serge and Charles, watching their pictures and listen to their stories, both testimonies of our shared passion.
Cayetano (living in Girona, Spain) started in 2013 to search and photograph the esfr-bordermarkers between the province of Girona and France (bm427-602). Starting from the east, he has covered until now bm601 up to bm528. We can read that on his recently published spanish website www.mojonesdelospirineos.com
Cayetono refuses to use a gps-device to find the markers. He prefers maps, delimitation-proceedings and information/pictures from other sources. I can appreciate his approach, that’s how I started and found most of the bordermarkers.
I like his website a lot. Apart from the pictures of the bordermarkers he provides
– the original (delimitation-)treaties in Spanish (!)
– a dictionary of related terms
– some curiosities
– and he is – very modern – connected with Facebook, Twitter etcetera
One of my most remarkable finds was bm531 in the Eastern Pyrenees, found on april 19th 2007. We had just met near Hostal de la Muga a local (Jean Iglesias) who happened to know the bordermarkers surprisingly well in this area. He told something about an ‘escalier’ (stairway) to reach one of the bordermarkers. I didn’t understand it until I reached the spot where bm531 was supposed to be. I saw a ladder lying at the foot of large boulder and then made the connection. I used the ladder to climb to the top of the boulder where bm531 is engraved, being invisible from the ground.
Cayetano from Girona sent me this recent picture of the ladder. When comparing it to my pictures, it’s the same ladder. According to Cayetano, it’s still in sufficient shape to climb it. And on Alain Laridon’s website we can read how this ladder was constructed on the spot itself by Jean Iglesias.
But do you really need the ladder? It seems so if you look at the pictures but the answer is: NO.
On the right side of the boulder you can also climb easily and safely to the top, that’s what I’ve been told by Charles Darrieu and Jacques Koleck.
And about Cayetano: he’s the ‘new kid on the block’, living in Girona he wants to find each and every bordermarkers on the Girona-border with France (= bm427-602). More about his project and website later on.