Monday, May 3, 2010

May Already!

The past six months or more have been spent preparing for our departure in April, and now it's May. It is like seeing an expiration date on a container of yogurt and knowing that by that date you will have given birth or Christmas will be over. We are in France and now the time is passing too quickly.

We went to mass on Sunday in the church up the road. It was neat to be at a service in a different language and in a place that seemed out of time. To think how long people had been worshiping with the same words in this same place, almost 900 years, gave a certainty and reverence to the mass. People were friendly and it was a great morning.

Lunch on Sunday began with a mushroom salad, then pork roast with deep-fried egg-plant. The pot roast is gouged all over and stuffed with half-cloves of garlic in the holes. Then it is rubbed with oil, salt and pepper and baked until tender on the inside, browned on the outside. The egg plant is sliced, dipped in a flour/egg/milk batter and fried in sunflower oil. Easy as pie, and you can use corn oil, if you don't have sunflower.

The agenda for this week is three days here, (in our little town) then off to Toulouse to visit old friends for several days. One of them is having a party for us, very sweet, so if you are reading this and you are in Toulouse, and I have not yet invited you, send me an email! I would give you my phone number, but they just put the phone in and I have no idea what the number is. While we are there, one visit we have decided to make this time is to Carcassonne. It is a magnificent medieval walled city with a real castle keep. "The Name of the Rose" and one version of "Robin Hood" were filmed there. I think, with Mont St. Michel, that it is one of the coolest man-made spots in France. I would also like to show them the Chateau de Foix and the Pont de Diable, along with a few other favorites while we're in the region, but I know that in the car is not the best place to be with five kids, and there are dear friends to see and reconnect with after so many years.

The weather has gone all springish on us; nothing but rain and cold temps. This would be fine knitting weather, but it is NOT fine "stay in an apartment with five children" weather. I had them all ready to go out this morning, from shoes to jackets, and as we stepped out the door it began to pour. We spent some time outside anyway, most of it under a tin-roofed structure housing all sorts of interesting treasures; an ancient lawnmower, a workbench, paint, a box full of dishes, flower pots and spiders we can only imagine from their webs.

We're reading, at least, with the rain. We read "Puck the Gnome" last week and we are back to "Anne of Green Gables" this week. Lily and Aragorn are coming along well with their reading in French. Lily has almost finished a novel and Aragorn is devouring Papy's comic books. Alienor has been busy doing some math lessons in French with Daddy. Arthur is becoming a fine artist, covering sheets and sheets of paper with horses and other animals, knights and castles too. Puck has developed a great love of Legos, both large, for castle-building, and small, the really tiny, intricate ones of which battleships are made.

Now I get to drag myself out the door for my daily outing with Pierre. We are both dreading it, it's still raining, but we need milk, bread and something for dinner tonight. Besides, I can't resist my daily tour of the village, one gets to thinking that things could not get on without one in a village. Time to check in on them all; the grocer, the baker and the newspaper seller. Ciao!


  1. Great to have that feeling of history, New Zealand is such a young country, only the Earth here is old, cheers Marie

  2. So on the very other side of the world, you understand what I feel here, that's kind of cool!


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