Bonjour mes amis. I'm back from almost a month in France, having visited with our dear daughter and Creative Consultant. (Perhaps it should be Dear Daughter; after all, that's the really important title.)
France is still a beautiful country. I must confess to having a bit of withdrawal. However, if we look at this minor ennui from the Japanese philosophy of wabi-sabi, what this really means is that I had a terrific visit, embraced the French lifestyle, made some lovely friends, had time to take walks, cook, shop at the marché full of fresh fruits, vegetables and beautiful cheeses and got to slow down, a lot.
The October weather was fine, not too cold or too warm, sometimes a little overcast, but great for walking and exploring. And the countryside - even this mundane field - was awash in a golden light and became a living Van Gogh. See for yourself.
You can see the side mirror of the little car we rented in the lower left hand corner. We took advantage of our mobility, and followed little roads just because they looked interesting. Here are a few things we found in Bretagne:
Around each corner was another surprise. We didn't worry about getting lost, and we didn't worry too much about "making good time." We felt sad when we heard the male half of an American couple in the Breton town of Dinan say: "There's nothing much to see in this town. There's only two churches and we've already seen those." Nothing to see! This little town has a fortress high on top, and is filled with half-timbered houses that date from the middle ages. It's a port on the River Rance, and it has been designated a "Ville d’Art et d’Histoire" (Town of Art and History). Here we met Sam, a handsome 13 year old "Mr. Heinz" mixed breed, and his lovely owner Kathy, who had retired to France from the UK with her husband.
I"ll choose to look at my return through the lens of wabi-sabi. If my nostalgia is directly proportional to the grand time I had in France, then aren't I a lucky woman?